12

May

What does Digital Transformation mean? What are its nine core elements?

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Before proceeding to embrace the digital transformation trend, it’s indispensable that small business entrepreneurs precisely get a notion of

what digital transformation involves

what are its prerequisites 

what elements function as the building blocks of digital transformation.

In what holds below is a detailed discussion on Digital Transformation and its Key Nine Elements extracted and paraphrased from the study conducted by Capgemini Consulting and the MIT Center for Digital Business.

Read the findings to develop the right perception of Digital Transformation.

Digital transformation is the use of current set of technologies to improve the performance and productivity of businesses. The big shot executives of high profile enterprises (that involves CEOs, business managers, marketing heads or COOs and  IT and technology leaders) are using analytics, mobility, social media, smart embedded devices, ERP and CRM to better

customer relationships

internal business processes

value propositions.

As per the report, the degree of digital transformation is not same. Every enterprise is transforming to a degree that they believe is right and experiencing varying levels of success. While majority have transformed their organization in total, others are still doing only the basics. The idea is perhaps to first study the different digital activities that can offer good opportunities for the business transformation and then proceed.

However, in the midst of all these differences, what unite businesses together are the areas that feature in the list of transformation. According to the study, businesses have been focused to digitally transform mainly three key areas of their enterprises that are: 

Customer experience

Operational processes 

Business models. 

And it is these three areas that combine together to form the Nine Elements of Digital Transformation.

 

1. Customer Experience

To digitally transform customer experience, businesses have concentrated on three sub areas:

Customer Understanding

Companies have invested time and effort to deeply understand their customers’ psyche. Right from social media tools to customer analytics systems – companies have taken advantage of these to gain an in-depth understanding of the target audience geographies and market segment and factors that leads to their dissatisfaction.

In addition to these initiatives, companies have built online communities to grab more opportunities of interaction and come closer to the customers.

Top-Line Growth

By now companies have realized that boring selling pitches do not serve any purpose. Rather they just push back the customers’ away. That’s precisely why many companies have used technology to hone sales conversations and pitches. Paper-based documents have given way to tablet and mobile-based presentations.

That’s not it – to present more targeted and effective sales pitches, companies are using insights from customer purchasing data. Tools like cloud CRM are getting used to streamline chunks of customer data, analyze them and derive actionable insights.

Customer Touch Points

Companies are offering prompt and personalized service across multiple touchpoints like introducing customer service based apps. They have brought the necessary changes within the internal operational processes to provide an integrated service across channels. For instance, the study cites the reference of a well-known bank that has established a Twitter account to answer client complaints quickly. Inevitably, this has added to the customers’ convenience, empowering them to share and resolve their issues from anywhere. Going to the bank for resolving query is no more an obligation.

2. Transforming Operational Processes

To digitally transform the operational processes, businesses have concentrated on three sub areas:

Process Digitization

It is nothing but a more sophisticated term for process automation. Businesses are capitalizing upon automation tools to improve the efficiency of their process and free their resources from behind-the-scenes work. Be it the automation of the HR function or the data entry processes, businesses doing all these and much more to make their people  refocus on more strategic tasks.

Worker Enablement

The trend that started with Google has now gradually caught up with the other top notch companies. According to the study, a large percent of global firms have made the working and seating pattern flexible. Employees have the ease to work from home or office. There is no fixed place for any. Employees can simply sit beside those with whom they are presently collaborating and working. 

All this is done to ensure greater collaboration, knowledge sharing and networking among the workforce and speed up the work from conception to final delivery. With easy and quick communication within the team, employees are getting their queries resolved in real time and gaining access to the right resources.

Performance Management

Transactional systems are exhaustively used in both internal and customer-facing processes. Now, the managerial executives have deeper insights into products, regions and customers, and make strategic decisions based on real data instead of assumptions.  Managers have the resources in front of them to compare and contrast the data in ways they could not do before.

3. Transforming Business Models

To digitally transform the business models, businesses have concentrated on three sub areas:

Digitally Modified Businesses

Companies have incorporated digital mediums and technologies within their operations. As per the study’s research, majority of the companies have used digital to share content across organizational silos. While they have not totally wiped out the traditional processes, they have started using digital channels to transform a new growth in business. 

New Digital Businesses

The introduction of digital is not merely limited to business process. Companies have brought digital products to complement their existing line of traditional products. The idea is to expand the boundaries by venturing into digital. 

Digital Globalization

Companies have expanded from multinational to global. Using the Digital technology they have expanded their operations around the world. Without a doubt, expanding the operations worldwide has boosted the overall profit of the business and made them more flexible in nature

Final Thoughts

The study strongly advocates the fact that Digital transformation requires strong leadership and vision. Small businesses need to follow the footsteps of their bigger counterparts but at the same time have their own vision regarding what parts of the company they want to transform. 

What needs to be understood primarily is that it’s not possible to implement digital transformation in all the three areas at once. SMBs need to start slowly by implementing the new-age digital technologies like customer engagement platform and social media monitoring tools. Depending on the progress, they need to identify new ways to further adopt the digital era.


Patricia Jones

Patricia is a full time CRM consultant at ConvergeHub and part-time blogger. She has earned herself quite a fame as a specialist and market expert in CRM software. In the last five year she has worked with various companies as CRM consultant to help them move their businesses to cloud. Her expertise lies in offering cloud CRM consultation, CRM customization and integration solutions to small enterprises. For last one she is engaged in building ConvergeHub, cloud-based CRM solution for SMBs, as a consultant.Follow her at Twitter: @jones_converge


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