May 20, 2020

5 Simple Steps for Building a Digital Transformation Strategy that Works for Your Business

Digitalization is everywhere around. IDC investigation a year ago revealed that  85% of business decision-makers believed they have 2 years to make a shift into a digital transformation to remain competitive and avoid financial losses. 

With COVID 19 the processes have sped up and every single business entity now is clearly seeing the necessity to implement digital solutions internally, for their staff, as well as externally, for their clients. Each company chooses its own way to implement innovations and start the journey to becoming digital. 


However, it’s a challenge, which is not only associated with serious risks but requires sensitive investments. So to reach the finish successfully, one should have a sound strategy and digital transformation then will go smooth and ensure positive outcomes.

What is a digital transformation strategy that works

According to Gartner investigations, in 2016 more than 125000 organizations plunged into digital initiatives. By 2020 they all anticipated their revenue to increase by more than 80 percent. Yet, only 27% of businesses had a clear strategy to follow. Digital business transformation strategy should be formed with a clear image of the sought after results in mind, so it should ground on thorough analysis, detailed budget calculations, and clear goals set. Deloitte and MIT Sloan Management Review’s  investigation, demonstrated the difference between mature companies and less mature ones, while the first mostly focus on how to incorporate digital technologies and utilize social media, mobile opportunities, analytics and cloud most efficiently to transform their business operations, the second concentrate on solving particular problems with specific knowhows. 

Besides, retail firms create online sstores, enhance consumer service, web and mobile presence, even craft virtual assistants, production meanwhile goes high-tech. 

Some companies, Amazon for instance, have managed to reinvent their whole business and craft digitally native Alexa or Kindle. 

However, there are companies, which have failed digital transformations. Some of the best-known ones to mention are General Electric, Ford, Nike. The major mistake done by GE was that they decided not to focus on separate digital projects and initiatives in different company parts, but initiated a new business unit -GE Digital. Yet it failed to effectively compete with rival services being focused on short-term goals and unable to prevent overall GE stocks collapse. Current CEO John Flannery  states: “We are still deeply committed to it [digitalization], but we want a much more focused strategy.” 

In 2010, Nike Digital Sport was launched by the Company to lead digital initiatives. 2 years later a ground-breaking wearable FuelBand was released and became popular among the users. However, instead of becoming a leader in wearable devices, Nike announced it was unable to exploit data generated by the wearable and faced difficulties in hiring engineers skilled enough. 

In 2014 Ford planned to become a “personal mobility” business with innovations at its center. But pioneering mobility solutions and digitally-enabled cars were developed in a new section - Ford Smart Mobility, miles away from the company headquarters The digital transformation was too slow and Ford share price fell by almost 40%. In 2017 Bill Ford Jr the executive chairman Underlined at a press conference that with digital innovation you must “have clarity of strategy”. 

That why we insist that a business should have a crystal-clear digital business transformation strategy in place before taking actions. An expert consultancy may help to set realistic and achievable target for transformation and prompt the effective strategy of long-term value creation for your company.

Ideal digital transformation is a complete refurbishment of an enterprise and its tech foundations. To reap the benefits of the process, businesses must be responsive to tech advances, yet keep in mind that the welfares of digital transformation are dependent not on the strength of the individual technologies but on howthey are integrated and how their disruptive aspects are taken advantage of. So, this article is aimed at developing a strategy for your very business digital transformation, with all its aspects well-thought-out and aims made clear. We suggest doing it in 5 simple yet productive consecutive steps. 


How to make a strategy and a roadmap to digital transformation

1. Define the end objective of your transformation

One of the greatest errors businessmen make on the way of their e commerce digital transformation is taking on pioneering technologies, which have been already adopted by the competitors or advised by the IT department without having a final goal in mind. Such an approach can, on one hand, result in difficulties with integration, on the other with scalability throughout the entire organization. It’s vital to get the global vision of the future in your business after transformation and come up with the strategy. You have to take long-term goals into consideration and at the same time, the vision should deal with reality. So, your strategy should base on the resources you have at the moment and the short-term objectives you set meanwhile. It allows you to set the reference point for specific actions determination and roadmaps implementation. It’s essential to stay critical at this stage and accurately analyze your current business tools and digital infrastructure against the up-to-date know-hows and trends of the future. In such a way, prioritizing the efforts and investments to cover the gaps of the current structure you would optimize and upgrade it in the most efficient way.

2. Design the experience

Defining the end and short-term objective is just the beginning, after that, you should concentrate on the experience you intend to create for your consumers and workers. According to the Actual Experience study, about 90% of business front-runners believe that their business prosperity depends on the digital experience of their customers and employees. So, think whether you want to provide better access to your goods and services to your consumers, improve your customer support, or some other value for your users to build the truly intuitive UX allowing them to reach their goals round the clock. Then define the technology you may use for the purpose. You may need a complete redesign of your corporate website, a new application, or possibly a chatbot. Our company will gladly provide a digital transformation strategy consulting for you in these aspects. The same works for the employees – thinking about how to simplify their work, improve collaboration within the team, enhance workers’ engagement, and facilitate interaction; you may define what technology or platform to implement. For this, you will possibly need to explore the success stories beyond your domain and set goals that are even more detailed after that. 

3. Take stock of the existing innovations

While the first two steps of digital transformation design are about your business, your goals and your vision of what you want to achieve, the third stage is about the comprehensive consideration of the software, digital technologies, vendors, tools, and products existing and workable for your sphere and purposes. It will help you not only figure out which solutions need to be retained, improved, automated, or left behind, but match the innovative tech solutions with the outcomes they provide or problems they solve.

4. Prepare the ground

As soon as the available solutions assessed, you need to select the ones to meet your objectives and cover the gaps of technologies you currently use. Make sure the vendors you choose have a verified track record and deliver the due and timely after-sales support. Besides, prepare your infrastructure. You will most likely need to form a dedicated team of experts to ensure effective transformations, prepare employees, and upgrade their skills accordingly.

5. Create an implementation timeline

This is the stage when all your previous investigations and effort are brought together into an actionable plan to match the business objectives, anticipated UX, chosen technologies, and solutions. Since the digital transformational processes are always time-, resources-, and financially- consuming, they are split into milestones. Some companies make digital transformation strategies pdf available for everyone concerned. 

Besides such an approach helps to guarantee seamless and smooth implementation of the innovations giving also the stake-holders and the management of the company the opportunity to evaluate the actual results and compare them to the planned outcomes.

Conclusion

Embracing digital transformation is nowadays a requirement for every business eager to develop and thrive in the hyper-competitive surroundings. With the 5 steps above you will manage to create an effective strategy and a solid foundation for the quick and effective transition into a progressive business. Keep in mind that big businesses cannot be transformed instantaneously, it’s vital to move in set milestones in an unrushed manner. However, if you need assistance or consultancy Axsbits has the due expertise and insight to facilitate your business digital transformation. Don’t hesitate to contact us.

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