More time should be spent upfront planning how exactly you will go about digital transformations. Your digital transformation strategy should be the foundational blueprint, and each component of the business should be thought through before jumping into a software implementation.
A clear and cohesive digital transformation strategy will be a derivative of your overarching business strategy. When looking at your company goals and objectives, you see what it is your company wants to do. When looking at your digital strategy, you see how your company will do those things. For example, say your goal is to increase customer experience.
Answering these questions and building a cohesive digital strategy before investing in digital transformation projects will set a company up for success. Without a digital transformation strategy, we will get to the other side of the project and realize that we are no better off than we were before. Whether we classify as a Fortune 500 entity or a small business, the level at which we are prepared to embark on a digital transformation journey is the level at which we will succeed. More time should be spent in strategizing our roadmap than anywhere else in a given implementation project. If you figure out your digital transformation strategy prior to launch, you'll be sure to realize the following benefits.
Formulating and mapping out a digital strategy ensures that various stakeholders are all on the same page and working towards the same goals. A lack of executive alignment has enough weight to crush the trajectory of a project, and it will show when it comes time to make decisions in the middle of the digital transformation process.
Building on our earlier example, say an overarching business strategy is to build customer engagement in an effort to drive revenue growth and, in turn, business value. A Chief Financial Officer may want to do this in the most cost-effective way, whereas the Chief Digital Officer knows that specific attributes of a more expensive software will move the needle more than its counterpart. In this scenario, there will be a clash of opinions on how to move forward.
A digital transformation strategy will enable the team to move as one unit, aligned in the decisions they make throughout the digital transformation process.
Governance is also essential for a successful digital transformation. This includes establishing clear roles and responsibilities as well as decision-making processes. When we map out our strategy in a holistic and cohesive manner before we move a finger on implementation, we essentially create a map that will guide us through decision-making from the beginning to the end of the transformation.
From your business plan to your organizational change management strategy, the different components of a winning digital strategy will keep a project on par with the greater purpose of the project. You will have specifically outlined key performance indicators that map out expectations across different buckets of the project, and you will allow project management teams to move freely within the guardrails as they make decisions in the day-to-day of the project, further enabling innovation.
The reality is that it's easy to become sidetracked and tack on technologies that would be nice to have, but don't necessarily align with the initial objectives we set out to achieve at the beginning of the transformation project.
Implementing new technologies is in business is no small investment. A digital transformation is often the largest investment a company can make as they grow, and it comes with a lot of pressure to perform. With an all-encompassing strategy, digital transformation leaders can rest assured that they will see a higher ROI than they would without proper planning upfront.
Driving a strong return on investment comes down to two things: staying on budget and within the estimated timelines. The two are linked, when projects go over timelines, they will also likely go over budget. If projects go over budget, you are probably adding things beyond the initial plan which will result in going over timelines. A strong digital transformation strategy will keep you from deviating from the original plan, and, in turn, seeing a higher ROI than you would otherwise.
A digital transformation strategy will enable you to understand your need so that when you are considering modern technologies, legacy systems, and cloud computing solutions, you know which one will be the best fit for your company.
If you are looking for help putting a winning plan in place as you embark on a digital transformation journey, please reach out to us. Our team of experts can help get you started on the right path. Additionally, our blogs, YouTube channel, and Podcast are all packed with resources that can help guide you along the way. Subscribe now to stay updated on new resources as they are published.