Can you afford to miss the opportunity to digitally transform?
29 September 2021
Transformation is a huge and vital part of human nature. Since our very earliest days on planet Earth, human beings have been evolving to both meet and surpass the perceived limits of their environments. It’s what we do as a species; it’s what sets us apart from all other creatures.
The ‘digital age’ is perhaps the most vivid indication of just how fast we are capable of moving forward; just witnessed in the past 12-18 months, and we'll continue to see as much progress in computing terms as we have seen during the entire history of technology.
Rather than see digital transformation as a huge mountain to climb, we need to look upon it as an opportunity to be embraced, and one that we can manage and evolve in line with any strategic ambitions we want to realise, and goals we have in mind to reach.
Understanding digital transformation
Digital transformation is about so much more than the adoption of technology. It is, quite simply, the key to wider business development and growth.
When many consider the word ‘transformation’, it’s likely that words like ‘disruption’ will be uttered in the same breath. The negative connotations of words like this can understandably put some off the idea.
Yet to focus on the short-term upheaval is to overlook the long-term gains completely. Simply put, missing out on the opportunity to digitally transform will leave you paying the price further down the line: with not evolving and investing in the right technological tools comes the very real risk of losing market share, struggling to retain and hire valuable, future-focused staff, and the inability to collect key analytics to ensure you’re engaging with your customers and building loyalty.
Overcoming fear and reluctance to change
The benefits of digital transformation are clear to see, yet the prospect of organisational disruption can still be a challenging hurdle to overcome.
Behavioural change doesn’t happen overnight, and a reluctance to work in a different way was reportedly why 84 per cent of transformations failed less than five years ago. Removing the fear that many people have when it comes to the implementation of tech takes both hard work and great communication - yet what we’ve also witnessed during the course of the last year is how incredibly resilient and versatile we are as humans, and how swiftly we can evolve and embrace new and highly efficient ways of working when all other choices have been taken away from us.
Leading the way with digital-focused strategies
It’s no coincidence that many of the world’s most successful businesses, regardless of sector, are those that chose to embrace technological reform and weave it into their strategic plans for the future.
Danish toy company Lego outperformed its competitors and increased revenue growth by 7% in large part due to its focus on digital transformation, creating means for children to connect and play in an ever-more digital world.
Homeware giant IKEA famously embraced mixed reality technology to bring their products into customers’ homes before they buy it, much to the relief of exhausted amateur furniture constructors worldwide.
Sportswear brand Nike, meanwhile, is now on track to have its digital sales representing a whopping 50% of its total revenue in the coming years, recognising that digital is fuelling the future of retail.
Against this backdrop, it’s clear to see that the potential rewards and opportunities of digital transformation are very high indeed.
If you’re reviewing your digital strategy, be sure to benchmark where you are now. Our latest e-Book describes how digital maturity modelling will help.
Digital transformation is a journey, not a destination
The key to embracing digital transformation comes with appreciating that it’s not a finite process; it’s a journey and there is no end. True transformations see organisations continue to adapt and evolve as technologies advance.
As with all innovation, change requires a leap of faith but also an acceptance that to stand still is not an option in today’s world.
With many market leaders already paving the way when it comes to digital transformation, the risk factor that was previously associated with uprooting your processes and digitising them has been dramatically reduced. That’s not to say you shouldn’t be an innovator, however – no two digital transformations are identical, and changes to your processes must benefit the whole organisation.
The time to transform is now, before it’s too late. With a solid strategic plan for evolution, you can begin taking steps to move your organisation forward towards a smarter, more efficient future. Too many organisations have, sadly, paid the ultimate price for failing to transform – don’t let your business, your charity or you follow suit.