The Importance of Strategy in Digital Transformation Processes

In recent months, the current health crisis across the world has forced many companies to re-evaluate and even drastically change their business models. And it’s forcing them to admit that a clear strategy in digital transformation processes is an important part of weathering this storm.

Even with things slowly going back to ‘normal’, there’s a good deal of uncertainty. For over a year, businesses operated from the homes of their employees. Restaurants and groceries were only mostly offering delivery, takeaway, or curbside pickups. Schools and universities conducted classes over Zoom.

Meanwhile, the entertainment industry was on life support for the better part of the year. Movies went straight to streaming services or postponed their releases. Concerts were canceled and musicians postponed their album releases because they couldn’t promote their work the usual way.

Most industries have had to take a long hard look at their strategies because what once worked for them no longer did. 

All this has proved that a flexible set of strategies is needed when planning digital transformation initiatives to mitigate unforeseen situations. Equally important are business tactics that provide stability during times of crisis; for both employees and customers involved. The leaders in a business need to be involved in these processes, even making changes that fit the situation as they see fit.

Why Digital Transformation Needs an Iron-Clad Strategy

When it comes to digital transformation, stakeholders and those in charge need to act with precision and have a clear end goal in mind. To make sure the business can survive an uncertain future, and thrive amongst competitors, they must combine the right blend of strategy and action.

Before the pandemic, a large percentage of process and performance management professionals were deciding whether their organizations would undergo the process of digital transformation. 

Almost a year and a half into the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become clear that business leaders need to identify weak links in their respective organizations and make necessary adjustments. The current state of the world has made digital transformation and integration a matter of utmost urgency.

How Proper Strategy Drives Digital Transformation

The pandemic has basically forced businesses to take a long hard look at how they run things. It may have been possible to survive without a strategy in the past, but going old-school is guaranteed to sink your business during times of uncertainty.

If you want your business to survive this disaster (and whatever else the future brings) you need to shake things up and get on the digital transformation train.

So, what should your strategy strive for? Your organization has to show customers that they are prepared to meet their needs, even when those needs change with the times. You do this by offering an array of innovative and appealing services that are pragmatic and doable.

 The business also needs to evaluate and predict what its consumers want and how willing they are to access the products and services you offer and what they want. Having a goal or vision beforehand makes it much easier to map out a strategy that makes sense for the business.

Strategies that will enable the process of digital transformation include a general change in company culture. Changing company goals and processes can affect the overall workplace culture, usually for the better.

This is because a shift in company culture ties into overall employee satisfaction. Happy employees translate to happy customers, so you also need to anticipate employee needs and wants. Are they happy with how things are being run? Are there any fears or issues that need addressing? Above all, make sure they have the tools they need to work through periods of uncertainty and disruption.

Next up, invest in new tools and expect things to go wrong. Your investment in these tools or services might be greater than you’d prefer it to be, or maybe the tool or platform isn’t working out the way you planned. 

The good news is that now you know what doesn’t work for your organization. Make use of data analytics to gain a better understanding of your services, processes, and general objectives. Collect data and examine it to figure out what may work better the next and try again.

Digital transformation and experimentation are pretty much complementary, and you need to embrace trial and error during this process. Progress isn’t a straight line, and your road to growth can come with twists and turns down the road.

Last but not the least, always make sure you have multiple options in case things go south. This may be the biggest way to keep your lights on during times of massive disruption. These include but are not limited to the following:

  • Various payment methods
  • Round-the-clock customer service or self-service options
  • Different avenues to deliver products and services
  • Frequent training so that employees are in step with the latest changes in the industry
  • Access to the business in case of network failures
  • Support for employees so they can work remotely without loss of productivity

In a Nutshell

Besides these things, businesses also have to make sure they are listening to their employees and customers. This is the easiest way to keep all the people involved with your company satisfied. Remember to have a system to get feedback, and analyze this feedback and see if you can implement the necessary changes. A clear system is the way to turning a strategy into success when it comes to digital transformation.

From website surveys to social media outreach, these things will help you anticipate customer needs well in advance before they become a big problem. Gathering feedback can also help business leaders come up with strategies that most resonate with their customer base. Together with flexible and well-thought operation tactics, these strategizing tips will help your business persevere in times of crisis.

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