About Digital Transformation

Digital and social technology is having a huge impact on the way we do business. But digital transformation is not just about using new channels for marketing or even adding digital or data features to products and services. It has implications for almost all areas of business, including the very nature of the organisation itself and how we organise work…

(Hint: it is not about redesigning your website but upgrading your business inside & out)

For new firms, this opens up the possibility to create their own structures, culture and practice rather than adopt standard corporate models. In a connected world, it has never been easier for small teams to become highly productive by focusing on what matters, and to compete with higher cost, slow-moving incumbents who lack their agility.

For existing firms, this is either a great opportunity to build on their strengths and their customer relationships to adapt to the C21st economy, or it is a threat that will see their slow-moving, high-cost operations optimised for past glories overtaken by newly-emerging competitors.

For business leaders, it means they can focus on leading, setting direction and supporting their people, and less time on bureaucratic micro-management. For people working in organisations, it creates an opportunity to work in more creative, connected environments and within more networked structures.

So where to begin?

A practical approach…

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How are changing market dynamics impacting your business?

How is customer behaviour changing? Product lifecycles? Your ecosystem?

What does this mean for your product or service strategies? An opportunity for business model innovation? Could you derive more value from what you already do?

How is the very idea of product and service changing, and what opportunities does this present for the future?

What capabilities are needed to address these opportunities?

What existing capabilities need to be improved to meet new challenges from the market? Faster lifecycles? More agility and adaptability? Perhaps a stronger ecosystem to encourage other players to work with you?

Which capabilities can be developed through a proces of digital transformation, and which need to be bought in through partnership, incubation or acquisition?

How do we test for these capabilities?

What combination of real-time data and human input can give us a picture of organisational health and the state of these capabilities?

At all levels of the organisation, what actions, changes or tweaks can help move these capabilities in the right direction? Social and digital platforms? Collaboration? New team and departmental structures? New ways of working?

How can this bring focus to our digital transformation efforts?

By combining technology, user experience, new structures, culture and process improvements within a digital transformation programme – managed and measured locally according to its impact on key organisational capabilities – all parts of the organisation can have a stake in improvement.

We do this by building a pipeline of recommendations and suggested techniques based on our experience of what works elsewhere, but customised to address the specific tagret capabilities. Then, we encourage leaders and managers to try some of these tweaks and changes and monitor their impact on capabilities at the local level.

This process of agile transformation is less risky and more engaging than traditional top-down change programmes alone.

Data-driven transformation

Our cars are packed with sensors that gather real-time performance data.

When we take them for a service, this data can tell us what’s wrong.

Why don’t we do the same with our organisations?

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