This is a guest post for Skills You Need.
Want to contribute? Find out how.
Improving Your Digital Skills: Technology Tips to Manage Digital Transformation in Your Organization
The world around us has been going through an accelerated digital transformation. This is a harbinger of the fourth industrial revolution, bringing about major technological upheaval in business practices across various industries. 2020 was a year that, unarguably, instigated changes no one could have anticipated: it forced businesses of all sizes to spearhead their digital transformation efforts by tweaking existing business operations.
In fact, those organizations that have been faring well throughout the pandemic are the ones that have had a blitz on their digital transformation. The coronavirus pandemic made such digital change a key ingredient in attaining business success, with virus-curbing strategies, such as social restrictions, mandatory remote-work, and even both day and night-time curfews, being some of the main driving forces.
Having said that, the process of digital transformation does not come without its own challenges. Transformation inherently requires risks, and can also be frustrating. With this in mind, you will need to understand what digital transformation really is, and the benefits it may provide.
Here, I also offer a few technology tips that can help you to manage digital transformation in your own organization.
What is Digital Transformation?
Digital transformation is an umbrella term encompassing various ways through which business owners are able to harness new technology to streamline their business processes and operations. It integrates technology into all aspects of business activities, ranging from fairly simple processes such as data storage to more complicated ones, including conducting employee surveys, and even attending to customers or clients.
The term “transformation” does not necessarily only mean a full transition to a completely digital business model - although it can still refer to this - but it also covers basic alteration of business practices. Essentially, any technological means of improving the operation of your business is referred to as digital transformation, such as accepting an electronic signature on documents as opposed to in-person physical ones.
The Benefits of Digital Transformation
Statistics have indicated that that digital transformation helps to increase workplace productivity and having your employees work remotely is likely to lead to a decrease in the number of sick leaves applied. What is more is that, with the right technology, you will be able to attend to your customers’ needs quickly, providing a better customer service experience.
As you integrate new technology into the operation of your business, your employees will be exposed to all the newly implemented digital systems and software, and it will be necessary for them to update their skill sets. In this case, their skills and knowledge will be expanded and upgraded.
In addition, if the implementation of digital transformation goes smoothly, you may be able to actually increase your revenue. In these COVID-ridden times, embracing digital transformation will not only allow your business to operate as usual, but also lead to other great advantages.
Four Basic Steps to Manage Digital Transformation in Your Organization
Enabling digital transformation within your business is not rocket science; however, there are a few things that you may need to consider to ensure a smooth and effective transition. Below are some of the basic technological tips that you can take on to enable and manage digital transformation within your organization.
1. Understanding your current state
Before you even take part in the trend of digital transformation, you must be able to define what has been happening within your organization and the external factors that have triggered the need for digital transformation. You should be asking yourself questions like “Have I met the current demands?”, and “How will adopting digital transformation benefit my business?”. To streamline the overall process, you can use brainstorming or mind-mapping applications or software.
Consider new technology as a means to attain greater business goals: digital transformation is not just about blindly converting existing business operations into a digital form. Along the way, you may come up with a new business process that is more efficient and productive.
2. Identifying your budget and the right technology
You must agree on and allocate a budget for the digital transformation implementation process. You should bear in mind that the budget will not solely be for the purchase of new technologies, but also the additional training needed for employees, the productivity loss as your workforce adapts to such a new system of operation, and support costs. In case you have not undertaken any projects such as this before, budget planning and forecasting software can help you through the task.
There are many new applications out there that can facilitate digital transformation within a business, and you may have to adopt a few different ones for the implementation of the overall operational system. Fundamentally, choosing the right application or software involves research and numerous trials. Be very sure that the digital program you are about to choose clearly aligns with your business goals.
3. Training your employees
During the digital transformation process, having your employees become accustomed to the new business operations and software can be a challenge. Hearing the word “software training” is enough to make many people’s eyes roll. Unfortunately, many peoples experience of such training is based on training undertaken in a traditional setting, such as a classroom or webinar, which tends to be time consuming and will disrupt work schedules.
In light of this, a better way of training your employees may be through a digital learning platform that promotes contextual learning. This is probably the most effective method in terms of cost and learning experience as it uses real time on-screen guidance and navigational prompts. With this learning approach, your employees can actually learn to use the software or applications as they complete their tasks.
4. Accepting feedback from employees and clients
Last but not least, collecting feedback from your employees and clients is imperative for the success of any digital transformation project. Based on this feedback, you can essentially alter the system to make improvements and changes. Try to establish a workplace culture where feedback is encouraged and facilitate open discussions and collaboration as this will help ensure the effectiveness of the digital transformation process.
Companies operating in the modern business landscape find themselves faced with new technologies and challenged to make changes to their management strategies. A vital element of running a business in today’s world is embracing these changes and turning change into an opportunity rather than a challenge.
About the Author
Craig Lebrau is the CMO of Media Insider, a Wyoming-based PR company that aims to disrupt the way companies communicate their brand in the digital era. If you have any questions, please reach him via email at email@example.com.