Digital Transformation ... where does one start?
Many companies are undergoing digital transformation to stay current in today’s world. Digital transformation is a challenging journey that encompasses cultural change and requires leadership engagement. However, setting up the right rigor, using the right tools and software lead to improved business operations for the company and its customers. Addressing the below three steps will ensure a successful digital transformation:
Define business problem … It is critical to define the vision for the digital journey i.e. what is the company trying to accomplish? Is it looking to reduce cycle time, reduce downtime, drive preventive maintenance etc. In one of the projects, the client was submitting numerous proposals for a certain product but did not see any increase in revenue. On review of the process, it was observed that the time to tender was significantly long and, in some cases, by the time the customer got the proposal they had already procured the product from another vendor. The client decided to implement digital solutions, automate the proposal process with a focus to reduce cycle time, which was reduced from 3 weeks to a few hours that lead to improved productivity and increased revenue.
Cultural transformation … Is the business ready to disconnect from how things were done in the past? There is a learning curve with new tools, change in KPI’s, change in accountability – all of which might seem disruptive to the business. However, getting across the initial phases will lead to better business outcomes. There are examples where the business outcome did not improve despite implementation of an IoT solution. In most instances, it was found that the IoT system was good but old processes still exist making cultural transformation and adoption of new systems or processes impossible. Even though its hard, having only one solution i.e. the new digital solution will drive the necessary cultural and business transformation.
Leadership engagement … digital tools enable doing things smarter, simpler and faster but will be adopted by the entire organization only when the leadership team uses the new systems and processes. People-Assetz provided consulting services to a client that implemented Salesforce.com for tracking commercial deals/opportunities but did not see any improvement in data quality. The reason for the poor data quality was not the software tool, rather the leadership team still requiring the information in Excel, a format they had used for years. However, once the leadership team requested to conduct reviews using Salesforce.com it led to improved data quality. Using one tool for the entire organization drives a consistent message and furthermore drives digital transformation.
More recently, with the spread of Corona Virus, many employees are working remotely, customer meetings are virtual, and companies are creating new business models based on digitization of workflows, processes and customer engagements. This change in environment will make digital solutions the new normal even after the end of this pandemic.
People-Assetz has provided consulting services to clients to support their digital transformation and has partnered with an IT firm to develop digital solutions based on client needs.