Creating a Digital Transformation Framework


Laying out a roadmap to Digital Transformation (DX) and then achieving a meaningful level of transformation is no small feat. Organisations and their IT leadership are likely to encounter a raft of challenges — from budgets to a lack of IT skills needed for tech-driven initiatives, to pushback from the organisation.

Digital transformation doesn’t mean “become an online company”. DX means leveraging technology, not just for efficiency but also to transform the business to enable new business.

True digital transformation isn’t necessarily about becoming an entirely different company but rather using technology to expand the company’s core strengths. It’s an offensive play to create a competitive advantage and a defensive play to minimise the risk of becoming obsolete.

Most so-called overnight sensations spend years working toward their success. IT leaders say they don’t claim transformation by completing a particular technology implementation; it’s a continuum of acquiring the right pieces, continuing to remove legacy technologies, exploring what’s new and investing in the right technologies to stay competitive.

So, Digital transformation is not something you buy over the counter; it’s not a product, it’s an idea, a philosophy designed to impact the way an organisation engages with its employees, suppliers, and customers. It’s designed to transform the technology and modify the business operations and to realign its technology in order to improve performance. Unfortunately, ignoring it is no longer going to work by virtue of the speed of change in the business world; for most it is now a prerequisite for long-term success.

Digital transformation is restructuring the business scene. Industries are being disrupted, even ruined; think travel agents, newspapers, secretaries, phone operators, bookstores, finance professionals, job recruiters, taxi drivers and assembly workers. Today, technological change is occurring at a record pace a pace which is accelerating!

Organisations aren’t so much falling behind as struggling to keep up with accelerating standards; they need to pursue a digital transformation strategy aggressively. Recent research suggests that those with strong corporate stewardship and a high level of digitisation are becoming the most successful. Why? Because they are better placed to move ahead of their peers and become leaders in their industry.

Those that elect to proceed down this path will be better placed to:

  • React faster when new market opportunities emerge

  • Enhance all aspects of the customers’ experience which should lead to retaining customers

  • Exploit all forms of digital channels to make contact with more customers

  • Reduce labour content and release staff for other duties by streamlining processes

  • Expand cloud-based services to deliver policy management, security, and analytics and thereby increase the agility of a network

You can’t separate business strategy from technology strategy. Technology is actually the centre of what growth is built on. The technology implications are driving the future of the business itself.

Analysts, advisers and CIO’s who have helped transform their organisations all concur that organisations need to have the right building blocks in place to power change. They need to be moving out of legacy; adopting newer technologies such as cloud and analytics capabilities; employing tech workers who can think creatively about business solutions; and developing a culture that moves as fast as business is capable.

The digital era has dawned and it’s imposing restructuring on organisations faster than ever before. Maintaining the competitive advantage is about speed and agility.

Virtualisation, the cloud, mobility, and IoT all enable this agility.

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