The need for a digital presence has never been more pronounced. The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and ensuing lockdowns drove rapid digital transformation (DX) efforts across industries, and many companies without a solid foundation failed.
Digital transformation became a top priority, with companies that didn’t already have solutions in place falling behind in terms of productivity. Without the tools and technology they needed, the quality of their products and services suffered.
Even before the pandemic, DX spending reached $1.3 trillion and $1.2 trillion in 2018 and 2019, respectively. However, the Harvard Business Review estimated $900 billion was wasted on digital transformation strategies that didn’t reach their goals.
The technology needed is out there, but 70% of DX initiatives continue to fail. Organizations need to implement effective change management in order to attain digital adoption and stay competitive.
Mistakes Companies Make During Digital Transformations
There are many potential pitfalls on any digital roadmap. Businesses without the right approach tend to make several common mistakes that can lead to the downfall of their digital transformation efforts and cost them significant amounts of time and money.
Implementing Technology for the Sake of Technology
In the race to achieve digital maturity, many organizations adopt solutions based on the latest trend rather than a careful assessment of the potential benefits. Making this mistake can leave companies bloated with tools that don’t address their needs.
Examples such as process automation and data analytics have much to offer but are far from being one-size-fits-all solutions. Businesses must ensure that the solutions they choose can provide concrete benefits for their particular organization.
Not Understanding What the Digital Transformation Will Bring to the Organization
Like any other change management process, defined expectations and success metrics are key to an effective DX. Businesses that do not clearly define their expected benefits and return on investment are unlikely to plot a clear and effective course.
Achieving success requires aligning the DX initiative with the organization’s overall strategy. Businesses must identify desired organizational outcomes and define how specific DX measures will progress them toward those goals.
Adopting a Tool That Doesn’t Quite Fit
There are many potential options when it comes to tools for DX. However, organizations can become enamored with a solution that simply isn’t right for their needs. Taking a digital tool that doesn’t fit and attempting to force it into your processes can waste significant resources.
In many cases, the focus needs to be on the processes themselves, and not the tools. Fundamentally inefficient processes and workflows can’t be saved by a DX initiative alone. Instead, organizational best practices must be carefully evaluated and improved on.
Not Properly Onboarding or Training Your Team
Even the most intuitive DX solutions require effective training. A lack of communication and training in DX initiatives leaves the workforce unable to take advantage of any new tools the organization adopts.
Communication is also vital to ensuring that employees willingly adopt the DX initiative and that they play an important role in it. Managing the organizational culture is essential to benefiting from the unique synergy of your human and DX resources.
Making Change Management an Afterthought
When adopting any new technology, effective management is essential. Your initiative will require effective change management to prepare your workforce for the new tools that come with the DX.
Many organizations fail to address organizational change management, focusing solely on technical implementation. Addressing this human element is an important part of what makes the digital transformation possible.
Succeeding With Your DX Initiative
To succeed with your DX initiative, you need a plan that will help you navigate past the pitfalls that await you. The right approach relies on understanding your needs and knowing what various digital tools have to offer. These steps can guide you through the DX process.
Define and Analyze
Every DX initiative is unique, and you’ll have to implement yours with the specific needs and goals of your organization in mind. Carefully evaluate your organization and its strategy, vision, and mission to guide your DX initiative.
You may need to update some of those aspects as your business continues to evolve. Take a look at your current needs and identify the changes your organization must implement to make the DX possible.
With a better understanding of your organization and its needs, you can start to plan your roadmap. You’ll need to identify the changes that will be necessary to reach your goals and then determine the schedule, budget, and resources required to implement those changes.
You will also need to establish the business case for the DX with organizational leadership. Define expected outcomes and benefits, and create an engagement plan that gets stakeholders at every level on board.
With a well-defined plan, you can now take action. A readiness review is a vital first step toward execution. You must not only test the technical aspects of your new digital solutions but also ensure your workforce is ready.
This requires effective employee training, along with the identification of change indicators that will help you monitor progress. Maintaining on-the-job coaching during and after deployment can ensure consistency and effectiveness.
With an effective plan in place for both the technical and human side of your organization’s DX, you can go live with the system and begin operating with your new digital tools.
Continue to Improve
Digital transformation isn’t just something that your organization completes and then moves on from. While you should take time to celebrate and recognize the individuals on your team who made the DX possible, keep in mind that a continuous improvement mindset is vital.
Technology will continue to improve, and your organization will always have potential areas for improvement. Keep looking for new ways to improve your business processes with both existing and new solutions to build a thriving and resilient organization.
The Change Partner You Need to Achieve Your DX
Change management consulting firms have a lot to offer, but your organization stands to benefit even more by working with a true change partner like Renoir. We can ensure that you attain the maximum impact with your DX efforts.
We translate strategy into a comprehensive DX program that helps your business achieve its goals. Through initiative-level analysis and planning, we deliver the right tools to meet your needs. Implement faster and more effective DX initiatives with Renoir.
You’ll experience the full benefits of our change management expertise, along with the full support of a transformation management or project management office to execute your plan. Schedule a consultation with Renoir today for more on our comprehensive digital transformation services.