70% of digital transformation strategies do not reach their goals.
In adopting digital technology into an organisation's strategy, companies tend to overlook the "transformation" aspect of digital transformation instead of merely the "digital". Technological solutions, such as social media and online tools or software, while necessary, is not enough to successfully propel a brand into digitisation. Beyond the latest technological innovations, companies should fundamentally transform their culture, establishing this first in a digital vision.
Change in any organisation has to begin with its leaders. To fully undergo transformative change, executives and senior management have to capture this in the digital vision. According to Capgemini's "The Vision Thing": Developing a Transformative Digital Vision report, 82% of respondents among the Digirati agreed that their senior leaders shared a common goal for digital transformation. The Digirati, also known as the cyber elites, are the firms that excel in both digital and transformation management. Having a clear and shared vision, in addition to a digital awareness, can be what distinguishes Digirati from its less advanced counterparts.
A digital vision will set the basis for a transformative plan. We could look at a few ways of going about it. Typically, firms set out on their digital transformation journey by digitising operations, customer experience, or both. This highly depends on the nature of the industry and business objectives. The motivation behind these initiatives usually ranges from productivity/efficiency through operations or building closer relationships with customers. Having established a clear digital vision, these drivers will help provide direction for a company.
Part of radical transformation in the digital age is introducing tools to speed up processes and boost productivity. But, an avalanche of digital tools would not help if employees continue to resist it. This could be due to fear of being replaced or unfamiliarity with technology. A CNBC/SurveyMonkey study found over 27% of respondents were worried that their jobs would be eliminated due to new technology. In any case, understanding the needs of an organisation's people is crucial to transformation. For instance, marketing teams may face a low adoption of digital marketing tools. Having a digital vision that encapsulates the need for change can communicate the importance and benefits of these new solutions. This can avoid misconceptions that digital transformation ends up with obsolete human skills but instead aims to enhance the quality of work.
Upskilling the workforce is imperative to a company achieving its digital transformation initiatives. Most companies invest in the latest tech software, which provides a platform for growth but lacks method. Senior leaders should do more to set targets and engage within the organisation's culture to grow.
For companies that want to start on a digital transformation journey, it is essential to remember that change begins with a vision. In the age where things are constantly moving, businesses must adapt, evolve and grow to keep up in the digital world.