Digital transformation has been on everyone’s lips for some time, but it can be confusing and unclear: what should you do, and why? We walk through the five reasons businesses should rethink and accelerate their digital footprint.
- Drive business efficiency - Today, life moves fast.
- Customer demand - Because they want it.
- Competitive threat - If you don’t provide it, someone else will.
- Becoming agile - Flexibility is your friend.
- Future-proofing - It pays to be ready for the next technological paradigm shift.
Change is a constant and digital technology is not only driving change, but causing a rapid increase in the pace of change. Businesses today need to stay on top of changes in business processes, culture, and customer experiences to meet business and market requirements. Failure to do so will scupper any plans to develop or maintain leadership positions in their industry,
And yet, change is a frightening prospect: deeply ingrained culture, an ‘if it isn’t broke’ attitude, confusion about new environments, languages and platforms, and, most of all, a critical shortage in key tech skills all act as a brake on taking action. These challenges can all be addressed, however, if only you start with the right strategic vision for transformation, and that means knowing why digital transformation is a must in the first place.
1. Drive efficiency
Your customers live in an always-on, digital first world. As a result, stress and pressure to get things done are universal. At the same time, many business processes have remained static and even paper-based. Moving to digital-first will drive greater efficiency in any business by reducing pain points such as manual intervention, as well as unlocking the benefits of new, hybrid working practices that help with staff retention and productivity. It’s the simplest reason to review your digital transformation journey, but it is all the more crucial for it.
2. Customer demand
Whether your market is B2C or B2B, and whether you produce a product or a service, customers’ expectations have been revolutionised. Armed with smartphones and tablets in their daily lives, today, people want you to go ‘technology first’. Whether the demand is for self-service, access to data, or to replace physical and manual systems with modern, digital alternatives. Expectations today are set by Apple, Amazon and Google. This raising of the bar is universal, and the contemporary user is no longer satisfied with the default options, whether your market is finance, transportation, retail or business services. Putting technology at the heart of your business and products means you can meet your customers where they already are, as well as stay with them on the journey ahead.
3. Competitive threat
Whatever product or service you produce, in whatever industry or sector, one thing is for sure: competition is heating up. The competitive threat is the factor driving most dives into digital. After all, if customers want something that you cannot or will not provide, you can be sure that someone else will soon fill that gap in the market, whether an incumbent on its own digital transformation journey or a nimble start-up that can afford to take all the associated and inevitable risks. But it is also a threat in its own right. Done wrong, a digital transformation will fail. Study after study, including from Deloitte and Everest Group, has reported that, on average, 70 per cent of digital transformations fail to produce positive results. This can be avoided by planning projects with purpose, so that digital transformation has a concrete and measurable impact on your business.
4. Becoming agile
More than just a development methodology, agile is an approach to business that pays concrete dividends. Agile businesses benefit from flexibility, internally and externally. Embarking on a digital transformation means delighting customers with the everyday experience of being extraordinary, and supporting staff in a changing world, marked by new technologies, working practices and deep collaboration. Being agile also means you can scale up – and down – as demand ebbs and flows, or with testbed-type projects that allow you to dip a toe in the water, whether it is a new market or product.
5. Future proofing
Keeping up with current technology is important for its own sake, but it should also provide the foundation for tomorrow’s. With technologies like artificial intelligence, machine learning, and computer vision and extended reality set to become important and entirely new paradigms like the metaverse eagerly awaited, it is important to future-proof your business.
Truthfully, there is no end to digital transformation as technological change is not a one-time event. Instead, it is a case of the journey being more important than the destination. From apps to the cloud, and from virtualisation to containerisation, new technologies now routinely force changes in our technological, business and social environment, and the next change is always around the corner. Having digital at the centre of your business means that no matter which way the winds of change blow, you will be in a position to rapidly adapt.
Digital transformation can pay real dividends for any business, provided it is done with the right strategic vision: one that leads to a concrete and actionable plan. Transformation done well will mean your business can take advantage of technologies and techniques like big data, DevOps, edge computing, and artificial intelligence, but the real goal is not to harness the technology but to deliver projects of purpose and take your next steps to becoming extraordinary.
Developing projects with purpose will see digital transformation shift from a distant dream to the new normal, while avoiding the pitfalls of failed IT projects and paying lip service to the latest trends while remaining mired in the past. At Mobica, we truly believe that digital is a new world of opportunity, and we want to help shape and accelerate that journey to extraordinary.
To find out more about how your business can develop a strategic vision and practical plan for digital transformation...