Surely you’ve heard the term digital transformation But do you really know what it is and how to make your company adapt to it?
In hindsight, it can be said that the beginning of it started in 1969 with the creation of the Internet, which little by little has gained more ground in all areas of our society.
Not only that, but it has also been improving and evolving with the help of other devices such as smartphones that have allowed us to access the digital network from anywhere and at any time.
One of the sectors that has changed the most due to the digital transformation has been the business and corporate sector. Digital tools and platforms, and the different ways we use them in our personal, work and social lives, have forever changed how companies operate.
Hearing this kind of thing is nothing new, but unlike about 20 years ago, the rate at which change happens is accelerating more and more, and the rate at which companies try to adapt does not always run at the same speed.
Hearing the word digital transformation, many think that it has to do with new technologies and technological developments such as the cloud, Big Data, artificial intelligence, among others, and although this is true, it is also important to mention that, like any other revolution , too encompasses many human aspects, such as behaviors, beliefs, and culture.
“The digital transformation does not come overnight. You have to change the communication with customers and suppliers and the way of thinking and acting ”
In this article we are going to talk about what is digital transformation, what are its benefits and what should you take into account for your company to adapt.
What is Digital Transformation?
Digital transformation is the evolution and transformation of business activities, processes and models to maximize the opportunities of a series of digital technologies strategically in all aspects of business.
With the constant changes in the different industries and the use of all kinds of technological tools to optimize the internal processes of the companies, it is a necessity to integrate these aids to be much more competitive.
Each organization is its own world, so each must travel a different path towards transformation to learn to adopt the latest technologies in their own personal way, expand their information management ecosystems and improve their internal processes.
“Digital transformation is not a destination”
Something important to mention is that the digital transformation does not have a final destination. Technology will continue to advance, quickly, and behavior will also change, you will always be trying to stay up to date.
The key is to change the chip, instead of focusing on reaching that imaginary destination, focus on the pace you want to bring the transformation in your company.
To understand a little more about digital transformation, look at the following image:
What are the benefits of Digital Transformation?
There are many benefits of this transformation in companies, the following are just a few:
- Improve productivity: Decision making becomes easier and more agile with the help of digital tools in the workplace. It is not only about the tools, but also the added value they provide, such as being able to evaluate your processes, gather data, better analyze each step you are going to take and identify errors to improve how your company works in general.
- Improve the customer experience: Digital channels allow you to interact with your customers in a more dynamic and easy way. You can receive feedback and personalize your messages beyond traditional channels, an important factor in a world where everyone can access information from their cell phone at any time.In fact, 70% of user traffic browsing the internet comes from a mobile device. At the end of the day, if you can manage to use the appropriate digital channels for your company, you will achieve better satisfaction from your clients and improve your brand image.
- Drive innovation: In many cases, transformation and innovation go hand in hand. This transformation undoubtedly drives a culture of innovation within the company, where creative minds are constantly required to design and create new ideas.
This generates unexpected and novel experiences for the client, giving them the opportunity to better relate to your company.For example: A company that knew how to take advantage of digital channels to build customer loyalty was the Totto brand, which manufactures backpacks, suitcases, clothing and accessories.They decided to create a contest called Design your Backpack, where people could design their own backpack, take a photo of it and upload it to the platform so that users could vote for their favorite in each category. The winners had the opportunity to see their creations come true.
- New business opportunities: Considering that most companies have their website on the Internet, the opportunities to expand your online visibility, get new clients and alliances, as well as create new businesses are high.
What do I need to know to adapt my company to digital transformation?
As I mentioned earlier, each company is different, so there is no single formula or plan to follow that fits all. The truth is that if there are some basic foundations that you must take into account to take the first steps towards digital transformation in your company.
Change company culture
Transformation is synonymous with change. It is necessary to transform the way things are done and this change must be led by the general direction towards its work team. They are in charge of doing change management internally. It’s worth mentioning that this is a long-term process, so don’t expect overnight results.
Remember that this change includes new processes and work models, and it is most likely that not everyone in your team will be comfortable with the changes.
This point is important because it has to do with what I mentioned at the beginning; The success of digital transformation depends, to a large extent, on people. So, it is a matter of a lot of patience, clear objectives and constant support and motivation.
Motivate digital training
This point is linked to the first one about culture change. In your change management strategy it is important to create workshops or trainings to teach your team the new technologies that are emerging and those that are going to start implementing in their internal processes.
For exampleMany companies, when they decide to migrate from Microsoft software to Google Drive, hire a consultancy to provide advice and training to their team so that they have the fundamental knowledge to start using the new tool.
Define an action plan
If you don’t create a digital marketing plan with clear goals, you’re not going to get anywhere. It is essential to create an action plan that defines times, ways of working, key people in each process or project, the new tools you want to implement and the key people who will support or lead that change.
It is also important to determine if you are going to need external help from a consultancy or expert that handles change management issues. It is worth mentioning that this is a comprehensive effort that involves all the departments or areas of your company, so the constant support and leadership of the general management is important.
Implement the right tools
The list of digital tools that can help you organize your business are almost endless. The important is determine what processes you want to improve and streamline, and then look at what tools you can use.
My recommendation is not to buy too many tools at the same time, it is important to look at the rate at which you can carry the transformation in your company and determine which are the essential tools. For exampleIf it is very important for your company to find a way to integrate all the management processes in a single database, you can choose an ERP for your company.
In the cloud there are several services that can be really useful to organize a digitized company. Here I mention two:
- Google Drive: One of the best known cloud applications. It offers you applications such as text documents, spreadsheets, presentations, calendar and others. The biggest advantage is that you can access all your information from anywhere and that you can work collaboratively, since the files are accessible to multiple users, in addition, everything you do is automatically saved in the cloud, so if your computer decides to turn off from scratch, your information is not lost.
- Asana or Trello: These two online tools are part of the project and task management applications. Both have their own characteristics, but at the end of the day they serve to correctly organize the tasks that you have to fulfill. Both have free versions and it is very useful to know all the projects that your team must complete.
The digital transformation is a constant evolution. Therefore, the success of being able to adapt to it is constantly evolving, finding the right balance between the speed of change and the pace of your business.
Time is responsible for making the ways of doing things disappear as before, and we as individuals, companies and society must trust in this process and welcome changes.
Social communicator and journalist. Believer of the phrase, “It is not what one says, but how one says it.”
When you’re not learning about the digital world, you’re discovering new recipes for cooking, practicing modern calligraphy, or playing with your dog, Lucas.