Digital transformation is more than a technology buzzword in recent times. Although digital transformation has been discussed throughout the pandemic, it is not new. Its roots go back decades. It is not possible to define or approach it in a “one-size fits all” way. You would be doing your team, customers, and yourself a disservice if you tried.
Digital transformation can mean different things for different people. That’s ok, it’s quite honest. It can be frustrating to not know the exact definition of the term, but this should be seen as an opportunity.
Digital Transformation: Understanding the Issue
Digital transformation is not only for the enterprise. It began many decades ago.
Do you think the dot-com boom was a digital transformation or a digital revolution? Or the introduction of smartphones. These are only two examples of technologies that have helped to change the way we do things digitally.
Digital transformation was frequently referred to as a major overhaul of an enterprise’s operations before the pandemic. Some felt that the term was too common and started to cause confusion. The rapid digital transformation acceleration that we witnessed during the pandemic was impressive and may have even caused some business leaders and customers to be confused about the definition of digital transformation.
Digital transformation is a journey that involves both digital service(s), and people (expertise) in order to solve a current or future challenge. You must include both technology and people in order to achieve true transformation. Why having both is important: Because it impacts experiences.
Recent KPMG survey revealed that 75% believe digital transformation can improve customer experience. A digital transformation framework should be flexible and agile, as no customer experience is alike.
There are many myths about digital transformation when it comes to building a strategy. These truths should be understood by decision-makers:
Let’s take a closer look at some myths surrounding digital transformation.
Myth: Digital transformation doesn’t require technology or process.
Digital transformation is, without a doubt digital services and products that transform how business is done. It can also be considered an off-the-shelf product if it is considered within these parameters. These packages are certainly available, but they’re only one part of the equation.
Instead, think about the people your business is trying to reach and the impact they have on the world. Digital transformation will not be successful without this vision and pre-planned goals.
It’s important to remember that not everyone, regardless of their age or profession, will see the same benefits. Take financial services customers as an example — there are many demographics. The general consensus is that the Baby Boomers prefer printed communications, while younger generations prefer digital communications. A bank could lose a significant, but profitable, segment of its customer base if they decide to make all their communications digital.
The benefits of technology can be wasted if you don’t understand their impact or how they interact with your company.
Myth: Digital transformation success starts where you least expect it to.
Innovation is often thought to originate in Silicon Valley. This assumption is often correct. However, digital transformation can be a complex process and the best innovations often come from faraway places. Digital innovation does not always happen where you expect.
One example is that I previously worked for a financial services firm in Africa. Although they had many customers, they couldn’t transact with them as easily as we are used to. Customers often had to walk miles to get to the bank to make transactions. The bank decided to adjust and began to evaluate what would provide the best customer experience.
A smartphone was the answer, even though it was still in its early days. Many customers had smartphones, even though they did not have transportation. The bank began a digital transformation that made the phone the central point of customer experiences with it. This led to higher customer engagement and satisfaction.
Myth: Bigger is always better
Digital transformation is a journey that cannot be done in isolation. My experience has shown that smaller steps are the best way to reach a larger goal. Your results will be more consistent if you are more specific.
Digital transformation can seem overwhelming and complicated if you think in generalities. Focusing on specific goals is a better way to focus and work towards achieving those goals. This requires deep and passionate knowledge of your industry, customer, and customer.
Let’s take the retail industry as an example. My experience shows that personalization is the most important step to a successful digital transformation for retailers. It is possible to gain insight across multiple touchpoints by understanding customer behavior and purchasing decisions, as well as finding ways to motivate team members. To influence cross-sell opportunities and upsell in more targeted ways for each customer’s interest, the store’s number of customers and their quality of purchases can all be analyzed. This can also help to identify team members’ strengths. This data can help you make better decisions, provide better customer service and work.
Digital transformation is more than technology. This requires a deep understanding of the needs and desires of people. This perspective may not be available to everyone at the top of an organisation. This can be overcome by investing in focus groups, creating communities, asking for input, and listening to the results. These insights can help you identify the problem and keep you committed. This will bring you the greatest value to your company, your team, and your customers.