The Why for Digital Transformation
Nine months into the COVID-19 crisis, some companies are faring better than others, while some are doing even better than they were before lockdowns and restrictions. So what is it that is making the difference?
Posted 27 November 2020
Responding to market demand
Having digital capabilities, or plans to develop these, along with a blueprint for their use, can have a strong positive business impact, no matter the size of your company. Companies that already have well thought out digital goals and have successfully implemented a digital transformation programme are the ones who are reaping the benefits in these unprecedented times. Organisations using digitalization to transform the way they work, for example, ramping up their online presence, embracing e-commerce and changing internal processes and procedures are finding it much easier to keep pace with ever-changing market demands.
Those who have not yet boarded the digital transformation bus are being left behind at a rapid rate. Such organisations have sadly suffered recently because they have struggled to respond quickly enough to continually evolving customer needs. For some organisations, their lack of digital capability has meant that they have not been able to provide a service at all. For example, how do you train and upskill staff if, because of restrictions, no face-to-face training is allowed? Or how do you run exams when your candidates cannot come into an exam centre?
Use of digital solutions, such as eCom’s innovative learning technologies, will enable organizations to circumnavigate these challenges with ease.
Enabling Remote Working
Of course, it’s not only meeting customer demand that digital capabilities can help with. Enabling employees to work from home is also key – something that only digitally enabled companies can support.
When governments around the world told people to work from home where possible, companies had to quickly shut down their offices. The requirement to move all staff to remote working in such a short space of time was, for many, overwhelming. Although some businesses already had the capabilities to offer remote working, it was often only used sporadically and/or limited to a handful of workers.
Some businesses, however, have adapted really well and have no plans to go back to the old way of working
A good example of an organisation using a remote working model and thriving is the popular website Pinterest; this company went from 35 remote/home offices to over 4,600 in under a month and have no plans to return to the old model post-Covid. They also implemented digital ways to engage their staff and maintain employee benefits. Google also has extended working from home for a full year.
Promoting Digital Agility
There is no one size fits all approach when it comes to digital transformation. Every business must tailor their approach such that the digital systems they choose to implement support their business and best serve the needs of the market where they operate.
To ensure your organisation can continue to meet market demands and support the needs of your remote employees, constantly striving towards greater levels of digital agility, so you can quickly and easily leverage digital technology for maximum benefit, is key. This will lead you towards better innovation and enhanced capabilities, not to mention the possibility of more rapid growth. There will always be new competition, new tools and customers will demand more and have higher expectations. Instead of customers wishing you had something, it will be a case of why don’t you have it? They may even buy from somewhere else that does offer what they’re looking for.
Return on Investment
Having clearly defined, realistic and achievable goals for your digital transformation project, will enable you to view it as an investment, from which you’ll see a return. It’s important to ask questions at the outset which help determine the direction of travel for your digital transformation project, questions such as “What’s currently working well?”, “Where could improvements be made?” and “How could we use digital to help make these improvements?” It’s also important to define the expected outcomes for the project.
For example, one of our clients wanted to improve the customer experience and were keen to investigate how an automated, digital process would help them achieve this as well as differentiate them from their competitors. The agreed approach was to use a combination of eCom solutions, creating a fully integrated suite of online tools to meet customer needs. Digitally transforming the way they did things meant our client has been able to meet their goals: significantly reducing their training budget, saving time and being able to offer the kind of user experience that their customers are demanding. Associated expenses such as travel costs and time out of the businesses have also reduced.
The Digital Mindset
If you think of digital transformation as a mind-set that becomes part of your business or organisation and not just a checklist of to do’s, it will be something that constantly evolves with the business and what’s going on in the world, which will lead to a more successful, positive result.
There's Help Out There
If your organisation is thinking about digital transformation, then learning technologies can play a key role in helping you to succeed. You may also be able to access the Digital Development Loan, created by the Scottish Government, to improve digital capabilities, processes and capacity to boost productivity. This is part of the Scottish Government’s drive to help Scottish business to be competitive which ultimately helps the entire Scottish economy grow.
Find out more about the Digital Development Loan.
Trust is Important
We have many years of experience in supporting organisations on their digital journey, helping them transform their business by embracing new digital technology which enables them to remain competitive and improve overall productivity. We can help your business reimagine, reform and perform to a new normal.