Framework 77 Digital Transformation (IT)

Introduction

In this age of digital transformation, there are unprecedented opportunities and challenges to providing significant business growth. So selecting the most appropriate platforms and solutions is of paramount importance.

Some questions that need answering include

- How can you choose the right solutions from a variety of offerings?

- What can be done to retrain staff?

- What can be done to improve the perceptions of IT?

- Why should you bother changing the way you do business?

Based on interviews with a range of CEOs who led successful digital transformations, the following lessons were learnt enabling them to create new capabilities, achieve a competitive edge and to serve their customers better, ie

"...Imagining the future. Building the future. And creating the future..."

Microsoft 2017

Lesson 1 - How to remain customer-focused while everything changes around you

Need to keep the customer at the heart of everything you do. Use technology to do this so that maintain growth and able to differentiate yourself from your competitors.

Customer loyalty is pivotal to any business.

Linked with this is fostering a culture of collaboration, accessibility, accountability and ownership by the staff.

Good customer service is closely aligned to how happy your staff are:

- Do your staff feel empowered perform their roles?

- Are your staff connected to the vision/mission/values, etc of your business?

Lesson 2 - Roll out your transformation initiative in stages

Take one step at a time.

Focus firmly on achieving your goals; recognising when milestones are reached in achieving these goals

"...You don't build a house without a plan and you can't renovate it all in one day..."

Microsoft 2017

Seek agile, iterative and cognitive solutions to achieve your goals around scalability, operability and speed.

"... As there is little room for error - change management needs to be seamless as possible to ensure minimal disruption to the customer..."

Microsoft 2017

Lesson 3 - Work as one team aiming for a common vision

Need to maximise collaboration and communications so that all staff have complete transparency on who is responsible and who is delivering what.

To achieve this, have suitable information management platforms that are compatible, user-friendly and customer-focused, ie

"...Looking at how data analytics solutions......to capitalise on new opportunities, rapidly launched new products and delivered services we know our customers want and love..."

Microsoft 2017

Aiming to better serve your customers while providing a better place to work for your staff.

The spirit of partnership is important.

Staff need to feel that they are part of something bigger than themselves. This helps attract new talent and retain existing staff.

Lesson 4 - Change perceptions about technology by focusing on business goals, ieĀ focus on goals, not the technology

Stop talking about technology and processes; focus on the goals you want to achieve, rather than the technology. By focusing on the goals, you create a clearer picture of the journey you want to take.

Remember that technology is just a tool to achieve the goals and is a way of empowering people to be collaborative and innovative (including ways to improve the way you do business, eg to deliver meaningful customer experiences)

Lesson 5 - Make the changes easy to adopt, ie user-friendly and inclusive

If change is made easy, people are more likely to connect and engage. This will result in a better understanding about the technology and how to mobilise an entire organisation so that no one is left behind. Use technology to help people feel accountable, accessible, in control, etc; provide a flexible workplace by training staff to how to best use technology to best achieve these and the organisation's potential.

Communications is the key to inclusiveness

"...If I had one piece of advice for businesses undergoing digital evolution it would be not to underestimate your staff. People make or break an organisation; they're either your greatest advocate or your fiercest opponents......they don't want to feel disempowered by change..."

Microsoft 2017

This will improve productivity, increase staff retention, attract new talent/staff, etc

"...People buying into the idea of technology as a conduit to greater productivity..."

Microsoft 2017

Lesson 6 - Tap into the power of entrepreneurship

Need to create tomorrow and build the impossible. This needs innovation (including reinvention) and entrepreneurship to build the future today.

"...Technology has been a great disruptor of business, but the companies that have weathered the change are those that embrace it. Building a culture that thrives on innovation helps business move the dial and can push digital transformation. While technology is an important part of this process, more significant to success is corporate mindset; having leaders who advocate renovation from the top down and staff members who feel empowered to be part of it..."

Microsoft 2017

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