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A well-structured, data-driven and measurable digital transformation plan is in itself a broad business strategy. The exceptional business outcomes of a well-designed digital transformation plan, such as increased revenue growth, improved innovation quotient, opened new frontiers and optimized operational costs, drive organizations toward implementation. By some projections, the global spending on digital transformation will reach $2.4 trillion by 2024.

To implement a digital transformation plan effectively, businesses must start with a road map guided by business outcomes, then pair strategic initiatives with technology-related initiatives. The exciting yet risky task of digital transformation can be done effectively by leveraging the following best practices:

Step 1: Establish your objectives and goals.

Digital transformation will look different for every organization. Factors like available resources, budget, familiarity with technology, etc., affect the way a company transforms digitally. Hence, goals and objectives may vary as well.

Establishing your business needs, goals and objectives at the beginning and then building a strategy on that foundation is the first step toward digital transformation success.

The goals and objectives you establish should include, while not being limited to, the following:

  • Ability to adapt to changing market dynamics
  • Enhanced customer experience
  • Acceleration of existing revenue models
  • Establishment of new revenue models

This process will help you identify loopholes, bridge gaps and construct the foundation of your digital transformation from defined business values and priorities.

Step 2: Focus on cultural change.

Cultural change is an inevitable byproduct of digital transformation. It disrupts the way your workforce engages with their work as well as with each other and facilitates the rise of a new digital culture. But wherever there’s change, there’s resistance. The degree of resistance to the cultural change may vary from one organization to another, but it is always present to some extent. Hence, it is essential to focus on cultural change to ensure your workforce seamlessly adapts to digital transformation without too much pushback.

Effectively dealing with the skepticism that accompanies digital transformation and its cultural change requires frequent communication, such as:

  • Explaining the why, what and how of the process
  • Articulating the potential benefits and business outcomes
  • Establishing a culture of collaboration and innovation
  • Developing a team mindset among the workforce

Implementing a digital transformation plan will involve several roadblocks, and resistance to cultural change is one of them. It is crucial to understand that a digital transformation can never be successful if the workforce is not on board. Focusing on enterprise-wide practices that help simplify the process of change can be immensely helpful in implementing the strategy effectively.

Step 3: Implement technology wisely.

Wisely choosing your technology is a crucial step in effectively implementing a digital transformation plan. You must select technology according to your needs and ensure your choices align with the goals and objectives you set in the first step of this process. Instead of blindly implementing popular technology solutions, research and look out for ones that fulfill your needs without exceeding your budget.

Ideal technology solutions will streamline your processes, facilitate seamless collaboration, allow analytics for better-informed decisions and align with your goals. Some commonly used technologies that may prove to be fundamental in achieving successful digital transformation are cloud computing, the internet of things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), robotics and augmented reality/virtual reality (AR/VR).

It is also helpful to pair your technology implementation with new and improved operations. There is no point in implementing new technologies if your internal processes are archaic. Establish new processes that allow employees to leverage the new technologies seamlessly to ensure the effective implementation of your digital transformation plan.

Step 4: Partner with experts.

Partnering with an expert firm is always beneficial when it comes to digital transformation. Effective implementation of a DX plan is a tedious task, and it can prove complicated if it’s your first time dealing with such a significant organizational change.

Partnering with an expert firm that complements your ideologies and maintains transparency can help you effectively carry out digital transformation. (Full disclosure: My company provides digital transformation services, as do many others.)

Step 5: Leave room for agility.

Proper planning and agility are critical to digital transformation success. These help ensure long-term sustainability, leading to fewer chances of transformation failure. Post-implementation observation, tracking and analysis can help you:

  • Ensure you’re meeting goals and objectives
  • Understand what’s working and not working through feedback loops
  • Change the plan based on inputs, feedback from users and systems
  • Identify loopholes that are blocking progress

Practices are as impactful as you want them to be. Not every practice will bring the results you wish for. Hence, leaving room for agility and investing in monitoring and analytics can help you ensure your effective implementation is sustainable for the long-term. Conclusion

Digital transformation is an essential practice to maintain your competitive edge in today’s cutthroat business world. You must leverage certain best practices to ensure its effective implementation. You can ensure successful digital transformation and sustain it for a long time by developing a clear road map, seeking strategic technology partners who complement your strengths and understand your business and implementing technologies that are agile and responsive.

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Autor(en)/Author(s): Sanjay Jupudi

Quelle/Source: Dallas Business Journal, 24.03.2022

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