8 minute read
The Formula to Successful Digital Transformation
For the moment, digital transformation has encountered a standstill. While the initial assumption that continual growth, development, and scaling despite present circumstances would still forge on even in a limited fashion would hold true, the reality is quite the opposite. There’s no time, space, or capability to follow through on any meaningful digital transformation ambitions, leaving businesses to batten down their own hatches rather than invest themselves fully into a sensible move that has, under duress, become more risk than its worth.
While digital transformation for business of any size is no longer an option in the fast-paced and ever changing environment we currently live in, the concept as a whole still holds merit depending on the application. There are certain rules or secrets that must be taken into consideration in order to have a successful innovation project from start to finish.
The ever-redeemable quality that innovation possesses is the ingenuity to flourish under any circumstances. Innovation is best seen when resources are limited, time is short, and the environment is chaotic. The greatest results are delivered under the most dire of moments. Innovation is about leveraging the right technology across the organization in a collaborative manner. You may not be able to digitally transform your business as a whole right now, but you can apply the same core principles on an individual project basis for massive results.
What’s the Formula to Successful Digital Transformation?
Any identifiable formula in nature has a corresponding building block design that enables the concept as a whole to function as intended. From something as basic as a math problem to a structure as complex as a vaccine, all things are a final derivative of their formula. Digital transformation is no exception. There are specific things to take into account in order to achieve digital transformation goals in the long term.
Solve the Right Problem
You can’t afford to be plugging every leak in your dam indeterminate of severity or priority. There simply aren’t enough fingers to go around, and eventually if you don’t address the important cracks you’re going to find yourself overwhelmed by a wave of work you should have tackled earlier. There’s always going to be small-time busywork you can find that could be “innovated”, but overall wouldn’t affect the well-being of your organization.
Prioritization is key. Look for what can provide the greatest value deliverable and requires the most attention, capturing the largest affected group through its innovation. What can impact the function of your company positively? The right problem to solve would be the one whose solution delivers high value for the business but also for its customers, because that would be the starting point of innovation.
The process is all about determining the most pressing pain points of the end user, engaging at a deeper level with them, delivering a better experience, and then deciding if solving that specific issue will give the business an advantage. The finalized experience of transforming these given projects should result in a better experience, increased functionality, streamlined efficiency, and so on so forth for any number of keywords that directly corresponds with a more successful business-customer relationship.
This all essentially boils down to prioritizing the most important problems, evaluating the level of effort required and the possible reward. What kind of risks are bearable? Which risks can lead the company to long-term success? While no successes are ever truly guaranteed, when you’re weighing pros against cons, the pros level should outweigh the cons in every situation. Will the final result be worth the risk of failure?
Are your clients and your company going to receive a net benefit from an innovative solution for this problem? The projects that deliver the greatest dividends vs. risk are the ones worth your trouble.
Instill a Culture of Innovation
Innovation is fundamentally about change. The problem with that, however, is that human beings tend to be opposed to change. It means a deviation from what is familiar, comfortable, and easy to work with. Once you start changing aspects of how your company works, you’re going to find some resistance with both your employees and customers in response to these alterations. Some may say, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
While that may be true, just because something is working doesn’t mean it’s working as well as it should. Everything is capable of improvement, and even the most functional assets can be worked on to be better than they were before.
Addressing that fear of change has to start within your company. This culture driven by innovation must be taught from the top to the bottom of the organizational chart. From your CEO to your office worker, everyone must be onboard the same boat if you want to get the most out of transformation projects you’ll have underway. Resistance to change can slow down digital transformation processes and make your business fall behind by letting go of the right opportunities for growth.
Adequate leadership is pivotal for this cultural adaptation. It’s important that top level executives unanimously share this vision of the business and transmit the importance of moving forward and adapting through new technologies. Unifying your approach establishes a company-wide mindset more easily than progressively expecting each individual to arrive at it on their own. Lead by example, and adaptation to a new ideology will proceed much more smoothly.
Partner With the Right Vendor
Digital transformation projects can often fall outside the boundaries of your company’s core competencies, making them a necessary but challenging obstacle to overcome. While you’re free to attempt tackling these challenges on your own, your mismatched skills and resources may very well wind up with a failed transformation project, leading to losses, not to mention embarrassment, you can’t really afford.
When your company’s core services are not related to the skills, technology, and expertise needed to carry out your digital transformation projects, you need to take a step outside your company. The market is full of outsourcing partners willing to offer their services for particularly this niche of work, augmenting your company with a competent team filling in where your expertise is lacking.
Partnering with an experienced vendor through extended teams, whether it be locally, nearshore, or offshore, is the right way to go. Compensating for your weaknesses isn’t a show of inadequacy, it’s a show of wisdom that you understand where your boundaries are. You don’t need to specialize in every department available on the market, just on what you do best.
Once you’ve established a working relationship with a fitting vendor, your resources are freed up to pursue projects more up your alley. This way, your team can keep focusing on your business’ core competencies and delivering value for your customers. Delegating appropriately geared projects toward teams prepared to deal with them provides much needed support and productivity for your organization.
Of course, an internal team should be appointed to collaborate directly with the vendor while they’re engrossed in your outsourced project. Their participation is vital to the success of the strategy, which means establishing effective channels of communication and cooperation is a vital step to take.
Upskill Workforce as Needed
Change is a quantifiable effect on your company. It’s intended to have a lasting impact, altering how you do your work for the better, how productive your workforce will be. With transformation come new technologies and processes. As these new assets are incorporated into your company’s infrastructure, your workforce will have to adapt, learn, and integrate unfamiliar changes into their work day.
Your talent must learn and upskill accordingly in order to handle the new tools in the right way. Growing accustomed to how things used to work means that any new changes requires a modicum of effort to shift over to new means of productivity. Most technologies don’t work identically to competing methods. Everything is unique, no two programs will work quite the same, and processes will have to be learned from the bottom up to effectively accomplish what they’re designed for.
It’s important to invest in education and training, ensuring that your workforce will be up to snuff when the new changes come rolling in. Comprehensive training will help iron out any wrinkles your employees may experience with new technology or processes, reducing friction as these new inclusions alter the way you do business. The more you prepare your talent, the easier it will be to smoothly return to normal after your transformation.
Like we said, change isn’t easy to deal with. However, while our comfort zones may make us feel secure, they could also be holding us back by preventing us from pursuing new, better technologies and processes. Massive, company-wide digital transformation isn’t feasible right now, and may not be achievable for quite some time, but that doesn’t mean that standing by and allowing businesses to grow obsolete is acceptable either.
Incorporating new innovative methods into your business’ infrastructure paves the way for constructive growth without the need for structural remodeling. All that entails is carefully choosing what can be improved and then devote the requisite amount of time and effort into accomplishing that small-scale digital transformation. This involves identifying the right problem to solve, instilling a culture of innovation from the ground up, partnering with the right outsourcing vendor that suits your prospective projects’ goals, and upskilling your workforce to effectively contend with the new changes.
When you’re looking for guidance in a sizable undertaking like digital transformation, you want a company with the expertise and real-world experience needed to deliver the best results. Improving is a leading firm across the United States and Canada for digital services and outsourcing, now also including operations in Mexico with a Nearshore delivery model service offerings through iTexico. If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you, visit us at our contact page.