Advisors meet to discuss a client project at a computer

Embracing digital transformation: 4 tips to get started

Many organizations today seek to better enable their organization and better serve their customers through embracing digital technologies. However, the organization’s ability to drive adoption of the technology and embrace an innovative culture is critical.  

As organizations consider digital transformation, they should look at five key categories critical to success: 

  1. Vision and strategy: What is the vision of the company and its desired future state? 
  2. Data: How will I manage the collection, use, storage, transformation, processing and availability of data? 
  3. Technology: What technology should I use to drive insights (cloud, tools, coding platforms, visualization, etc.)? 
  4. People: What are the people needs of the organization - skills/roles and organizational design (when to hire, how to structure teams) to support digital transformation? 
  5. Process automation and governance: What are the rules that govern the use and distribution of data and processes? 

Five key categories critical to digital transformation success

Enablers to digital transformation 

For organizations who are willing to embrace this change, digital transformation can provide the opportunity to rethink how they use technology at the most fundamental level. This can help businesses to improve their product and/or service offerings while also building a more meaningful relationship with their new generation of customers.  

The question many ask is, where to start? 

Begin with the end in mind.  
  • Lead with strategy.  Clearly defined priorities, supported by leadership, are needed to advance operational processes and digitally transform. 
  • Focus on your client or customer experience as an area for innovation. Consider customer strategy, customer journey and user-centric experience design. 
  • Take a strategic look across the value chain to identify the greatest opportunities for the organization. Through business process analysis and design, actively identify savings opportunities and operational efficiencies to drive early wins. 
  • Build a plan that integrates change management. Consider how to support the organization’s move from awareness to understanding and ultimately, to commitment of the vision. 
Cultivate an innovative, digital culture, focused on delivering exceptional experiences.
  • Ensure the support of leadership to champion the change, make critical decisions and drive commitment across the organization. 
  • Encourage collaboration and bring together multi-dimensional teams with both business and technical capabilities, that have a passion for improving the user experience. 
  • Encourage a culture of idea generation, innovation and experimentation. Embrace failures rather than a success-only mindset and champion “stretch” roles and opportunities. 
  • Encourage employees to share innovative ideas and understand the benefits of these changes to their roles. Encourage practices that drive innovation in the industry or organization norms. 
Activate with data and technology.  
  • Gain early access to modern technologies and new ways to apply technologies. Understand the technologies, data, and partners available to enhance your existing capabilities. 
  • Be open to experimenting and prototyping new technology solutions to gain early wins and build momentum and excitement within the organization. 
  • Recognize data as a key asset and leverage external sources. Identify analytics that could help support the value chain. Leverage data from the Internet of Things (IoT) and other connected devices. Make sure data is clean, accessible and holistic. 
  • Make the seamless integration of old and new systems a priority as migration to more innovative and powerful technologies occur. Consider the future state of the IT ecosystem. 
Enable the organization and prepare for scale.  
  • Ensure continued alignment to the company’s overall strategy and objectives .
  • Focus on learning and development of the workforce, upskilling and retraining of team members focused on growth. Help employees understand how digital transformation will augment their roles and allow increased focus on analysis and insight. 
  • Create a digital center of excellence to encourage knowledge sharing and cross-team collaboration.  

Contact us to get started on your digital transformation journey today.

Amanda E. Klein
successful economic development for local governments
Next up

Data-driven economic development strategies for future project success