The coronavirus pandemic has accelerated many digital transformation initiatives throughout various different businesses over a much shorter period of time that is usually expected for such technical endeavours. This kind of digital transformation however is not just about supporting the workforces that have been sent to work from various bedrooms and makeshift offices.
This acceleration of progress has found many businesses not just using the new advancements as a stop-gap to replace existing processes; it’s actually starting to replace those and create a “new-normal” for businesses across all different industries – of all sizes. And while the original elements were largely to help businesses survive throughout the pandemic, they are now using it to promote agility and strength in order to grow.
How are businesses looking to completely transform many aspects of their operations into a more digitised model whilst trying to nurse them and their employees, clients, customers and other stakeholders through continually uncertain times? The answer to this lies in organisations’ willingness to enhance and replace existing processes to try and get the most out of the current situation. For many heads of IT and CTOs alike, this has been a completely new challenge; of which not very many businesses have had to deal with before, but has been something of a blessing in disguise for many who now have firepower behind those digital projects that always seemed to be pushed to the back of the pile by the rest of the board.
There are a few things that should be taken into consideration though when it comes to the ways in which you can start to change what you do and understand the ways that these changes will affect the very makeup of your business now, and in the future:
What appears to the be overall objectives for many businesses that are looking to secure some form of digital transformation? On the face of it, it seems that businesses are mainly going to use digital transformation in order to help them gain competitive advantage. The pandemic has acted as a driving force that has disrupted businesses into change but it has also helped them to realise new ways to work and better ways to do things. Customer demands have also shifted as a result of the pandemic and this digital disruption has been felt across the entire spectrum of people that interact with an organisation.
Many of a customers needs have also; however, stayed the same, but new ways of doing things have enabled businesses to apply those methods to satisfy customers needs.
Being digital first has extended beyond different product-to-service models and one thing that was apparent at the beginning of the pandemic was that service based businesses such as typical SaaS organisations; actually fared better with the disruption because of the nature of the business – many of their services were online or remote anyway. But now these extra demands on the market have pushed the smaller and mid size companies to rethink the ways in which they do things.
Launching delivery services for example that goes alongside your normal activities will impact your customers but also your entire supply chain in the way that you now have to concentrate on coordinating and collaborating with other businesses to ensure the correct service for your customers. This could cause various unforeseen problems and bottlenecks in processes and this is why digital aspects should be carefully considered in this particular example. This also then goes for any element of your business that you change or create as a result of transformation.
Identify important business outcomes
This is always usually an incredibly important step when it comes to maneuvering in your industry’s landscape; but it is now more important than ever to identify what your business outcomes are specific to any digital transformation that your business needs to adhere to ensure success. It is suggested that one of the most important things to look for in choosing objectives is to make sure that they work with innovating the business at their core.
Can you leverage digital innovation to improve your business experience for customers, partners, suppliers or employees? Are there existing processes that are currently taking up a load of your employees times that can be streamlined to ensure more efficiency across the organisation? Put these things into your mind when you are considering your objectives and outcomes. They could be anything from improving the customer experience throughout onboarding, streamline credit control processes to reduce payment issues or even using marketing automation to get more leads through the website. The list is endless but that just means there’s less of an excuse to not properly give objectives!
Listen to those people in your business that matter
One aspect of digital transformation that many businesses get wrong is simply forging ahead with various changes and initiatives without properly listening to the people in your organisation who will be affected most. Are you implementing a new cloud-based CRM that your sales teams will need to work from? It is important then, to get those people involved. And by involvement, we don’t just mean the heads of department or sales directors – the very staff who will be using the system. You will be surprised just how much you will find out from those people!
Ensuring that you leverage any digital transformation in these ways ensures that you get the most out of any project that comes the way of the IT leaders in your organisation. This is incredibly important because digital transformation has been one of the winners from the pandemic and something that businesses should embrace for the future to come. If you are looking to try and get the most out of your existing processes or have a project that you would like us to take a look at to understand how bespoke software development can enhance the way that you do things, get in touch with us now.