The pandemic has irrevocably changed how we work, how we run our businesses, and how enterprises generate, capture, and deliver value. What began as emergency digital interventions to manage operations during the catastrophe has now morphed into rapid digital adoption for strategic goals such as digitizing consumer engagement and building a just-in-time supply chain. We work closely with clients helping them reimagine every facet of their business using digital technology in a dynamic manner so that they can prosper while their technology landscape continues to transform.
Enterprise digital transformation has been a buzzword for over 10 years. Especially post covid enterprises have looked at digital transformation with a lot of focus. In my 25+ years of experience interacting with different enterprises from various domains, I have realized that the one challenge is that every enterprise looks at digital transformation very differently. So, what is a true business transformation and/or digital transformation? What does it include? How does one go about it? and most importantly what challenges or difficulties does an organization face when putting its digital transformation strategy into practice?
Digital transformation is an activity that needs attention from all functions. It’s not just the technology group that runs it. An organization must consider the overall transformation of both business/processes as well as technology. Usually, we have seen the following 4 stages in digital transformation:
1. Data digitization stage, businesses make sure that all their enterprise data is stored in one or more software application systems. The stage where the enterprise defines its enterprise data, including the master, transactional, and reference data, and builds applications and procedures to manage the enterprise data is more significant. Since these programs can be used for data representation, businesses should avoid using them for data storage at this time. Enterprises should also invest in both CRM and ERP solutions.
2. Process digitalization entails converting all your manual, partially manual, or partially automated processes into software-driven ones. You can achieve this by personalizing your CRM and ERP platforms.3. Digital optimization, during this step, you pinpoint all your opportunities for process improvements that can be made. There are two stages at which the process can be optimized.
- At the first level, activities are integrated amongst various processes, and business applications are made to manage these processes and share information with one another with little to no human involvement. At this point, businesses should consider leveraging integration platforms, API gateways, and integrating their systems.
- At the second level, the organization examines its many business divisions to identify shared business processes and technological architectures. It then determines how technology consolidation can be accomplished. In this sense, the CIO oversees both IT and digital transformation.
4. Transformation, in this stage, the firm recognizes the potential for changing current procedures and establishing fresh ones that fundamentally differ from how business was first conducted. For instance, it alters how businesses interact with their end customers and other businesses. It improves how business deals with other businesses or their downstream clients.
Leading companies and Digital Leaders are developing transformation road maps focused on business domains (such as a customer journey, core business process, or function). Technological innovation is continuous and accelerating and needs to be applied to the very core of how a business operates and competes. The stakes are very high, and there is no finish line. Ongoing transformation requires a growth mindset, a different way of leading an organization into the future.