Business, as we know it, has changed over the last decade and a half. With the arrival of social media, mobile penetration, and of course the Cloud, the way we do business has seen a dramatic change. For businesses that had the foresight to align themselves with dynamic digital transformations, the benefits have been manifold. That being said, it is never too late to give your business the advantage of digital transformation. Here is how you can beat your competitors with digital transformation in 2018.
Assess Your Digital Readiness Quotient: Now the fact is that those who took up digital transformation as it occurred, have an upper edge. The longer you take, as a business, to make the decision of going digital, the harder it will be for you to keep up. But once you have made the decision, it is important not to go in blindly or simply on the basis of trends that your sector is following at present. Your first step to ensure that you make the most of your digital transformation is assessing your digital readiness quotient. Getting prepared involves a change of mind-set, a change in work protocols and the creation of an intuitive system that allows you to add in elements of change, and take them away as needed, in real time. All this takes some planning. Hiring a team of experts from outside of your organization to run detailed assessments on your digital readiness will help you create what can be termed a plan-make-sell-operate model.
This means that your assessment will help you plan the best digital business strategy for your company. It will then help create a product or service that will be most beneficial to your company and its clients. Based on this will be the creation of a sell or a digital market engagement program and finally the creation of an operation system that will bring all of these elements together seamlessly.
Focus on Customer Experience: The success of any organization is based on its client retention and satisfaction. In the process of digitizing your organization, it is necessary that you never lose sight of this. There are three primary considerations when dealing with customer satisfaction:
- Creating a seamless experience: Unifying all processes across all channels of your business will ensure that your customer has a consistent experience every time. The focus has to be on the unification of all your processes.
- Responsiveness to a customer has to be immediate: This is one of the key requirements of any business dealing with prospective online customers who may have doubts that they need clarified or issues that need to be sorted out. These have to be in place right from the start.
- Personalizing experiences for your customer is necessary: When your digital system is able to crunch data and come out with a unique customer profile your interaction protocols must be able to create a unique experience for the customer based on his requirements and online behaviour.
Work on the Present and the Future Simultaneously: When undertaking digital transformation of your organization it is easy to slip into a single track of getting your business digitally ready for the present day scenario. But for any business to have an edge over its competitors, it is vital that you examine things from two perspectives – that of the present and the future. When working on the present, you need to have a strong core from which change can be easily implemented. That being said, you need to have an eye on what comes next. Develop the foresight to look a decade into the future and anticipate the needs of your customer and assess how your business can work its way there. Focusing on innovation that works on the present and the future is the key to getting an edge on your competitors in digital transformation.
Don’t Work on Assumptions: For those organizations in the midst of digitization or those that already are ahead of the game, it all stems down to management taking a call on what needs to be done. This call is based on personal experiences with technologies of the past and is often based on biases and assumptions. In the world of digitized businesses, there is no room for assumptions. There are multiple levels on which these assumptions can happen and which must be avoided.
Take for example human-customer interaction – While the human touch is valued, there is an increasing demand for self service facilities which save on time and remove the need for human interaction. This works especially for customers who are sure of what they want. Providing options that allow for a complete non-human interface would be a good idea. The assumption that human interaction is necessary is gradually becoming obsolete.
There are no limitation on how much a business can be digitized. Getting your business to a particular level of seamlessness is an achievement, but the work does not end there. There is always scope for innovation and these are windows of opportunity that you must keep your eyes peeled for.
There is also the worry and the assumption that a seamless organization may take away the scope for innovation and hide potential talent. But, if you look at it, the agility of digitization is actually a human innovation and there can never be an end to taking things forward.
The thing about digital transformation is that there is no single formula or template that can be applied to all organizations. Getting an edge over your competitors is about staying relevant, and embracing change on a regular basis. An open mind is perhaps the key to successful digital transformation.