In the digital era, there are few things more important to a company’s strategy than creating an effective digital transformation process. When designing their IT strategy, executives, tech leaders, and change managers must account for both the technological and human components of change.
Here, we’ve outlined five important elements of an effective digital transformation, and in effect, organizational transformation
process. By adhering to these simple steps, you can prepare a successful digital transformation strategy
and ensure a smooth implementation.
Five steps of an effective digital transformation process
1. Assess the current state
Before entering this technological undertaking, executives must be able to clearly define what is happening within the organization and the market that is calling for a digital transformation.
Where have current demands not been met? How will a digital remodeling contribute to company goals? These are important questions during the assessment period. As much as new technology helps businesses stay efficient and competitive, the most successful way to approach the digital transformation process is to think of new technology as a tool to achieve a greater strategic goal. Adopting technology is not just about adding something shiny and new.
2. Set the budget and identify the right technology
In this step, the executive team, IT team, and finance leaders must agree on a budget for the digital transformation process.
It’s important to remember that the budget needs to account for more than just the price of the technology. It must also include employee training and support costs, and needs to consider temporarily lost productivity following the implementation. Choosing the right software
requires a good deal of research and patience. Do your due diligence and make sure the tools offer features and capabilities that fulfill your employees’ needs. Make sure it is scalable if you have plans for growth. Establish strong ties with the vendor of choice and discuss what kind of support they will offer beyond the implementation process.
3. Plan out training
Onboarding employees to the new software can be one of the most challenging experiences during the digital transformation process. Mention software training
in front of your employees and most likely they will recoil. Why? Traditional methods of training, such as classroom sessions, webinars, or instruction manuals, are time-consuming and interrupt the workflow. Most importantly, they are not effective for teaching people how to use contemporary enterprise software.
The most cost-effective and efficient mode of training is digital training that enables contextual learning
. With real-time navigational prompts and on-screen guidance, users can learn to use new software while actually completing tasks.
4. Create an open feedback culture
Digital transformation requires employees and leaders alike to make big changes. When you embark on the digital transformation process, make sure you have a solid change management
infrastructure in place. Without it, you will be sure to face employee resistance, frustration, and disengagement.
Open communication is a key ingredient in successful change management. Manager and employee feedback is crucial to the success of the digital transformation process. Based on this feedback, leaders can make changes to optimize training effectiveness. To encourage constructive feedback, promote open discussions, open-mindedness, and collaboration.
5. Keep the process open ended
Even after implementation, digital transformation is an ongoing process. Because many technologies are based in the cloud, updates come frequently and automatically.
To maintain a high level of usability and productivity, enterprises must have a structure in place to support ongoing training. As you plan your own digital transformation process, stay open-minded, informed about technological developments, and attuned to the needs of your employees.