Traditional change is difficult and time consuming for businesses. Now that digital transformation appears to be settling in the labor market we notice that more businesses seem to make an even greater effort to adapt to this new type change.
Digital transformation will completely shape the world of industries and the worldwide market. Over the past five years, more and more companies appear to be making the change, trying to turn to digital transformation. A substantial amount of them focusing on large-scale changes.
However, and although we seem to be moving to an era of massive digital literacy, the success of the digital transformation process for businesses still appears to be missing. The percentage of successful implementations does not appear to be rising which ponders a lot of questions. The most common one “Is the world ready for digital transformation?’’
The answer appears to be easy to answer. Yes, the world is ready for it but only after following a set of practices that have proven to have a success rate, much higher than expected. 21 best practices have been reported to work, falling under the following five categories:
- Capability building
- Empowering workers
- Upgrading tools
- Upgrading communications
By following these categories, companies can pinpoint the most important factors that they will need to work on to increase their chances of successfully going through digital transformation.
Over the past decade, more and more efforts are being made towards massive collective efforts to adapt digital transformation. It appears that the actions are being taken and are somewhat successful. The percent, however, remains low. The reason is not so much the success of the actual effort. It is their unsustainable nature.
Although we would expect to see exceptions, tech, and digitally savvy industries for example, even there the success rate does not seem to be able to go over 30%. It also appears that companies employing less than 100 employees have a higher rate of successfully implementing digital transformation actions than companies with more than 50.000 employees.
Explaining digital transformation
There appears to be a gap between understanding digital transformation and applying it. Before thinking of ways to integrate into it one must first understand the very anatomy of the concept. What is digital transformation?
Digitizing a company’s entire operating system appears to be the go-to line for anyone who is trying to explain the digital transformation. And in a way that is what digital transformation is all about. However, the scope is much wider, and digital transformation if affecting a plethora of other functions within the business.
From digitizing services and communications with customers to launch new products through digital channels, the adoption of the 11 new technologies plays the most important role in the integration of digital transformation in businesses. These technologies are:
- Traditional web technologies
- Could-based services
- Mobile Internet
- Big Data and big data architecture
- Internet of Things
- Design Thinking
- Artificial Intelligence
- Advanced neural machine-learning techniques
- Augmented reality technologies
- Additive manufacturing
Integrating digital transformation
Change might be difficult but it is necessary. In a world driven by technology and mass information, companies need to keep up the pace. From small businesses to big industries digital transformation appears to be a one-way street.
The current technologies are making integration easier but more is needed. Changes need to be made in the business to just be able to support these technologies aiming to differentiate successful digital transformation from others.
Some factors can affect integration more than others. Companies need to have the right, digital-savvy leaders in the right place. The company needs to focus on building capabilities for the workforce and empower people to work in new ways to prepare the ground for digital transformation.
The integration needs to start gradually. Adding a few tools every day to initiate a digital upgrade. Last but not lease communication needs to change and only happen through digital methods.
The overall financial value of Digital Transformation in businesses and society is estimated to be $100 trillion by 2025, globally. The majority of enterprises and public sector bodies around the world are riding the high-way lane entering this new era. There’s no doubt that it seems to be a one-way route, in terms of expanding forward their businesses, goals, and accomplishments.
This is not just another buzzword. It’s a process that makes companies agile and ready to address future challenges, more customer-centric, and more effective. Operational agility comes as the result of a shift in organizational culture.
It is a journey rather than a one-time project. Depending on the culture and the business model of each organization, different paths can be used to enable the organization’s transformation and in the next step to innovation.