Company Digital Transformation
We are presented with a new challenge that we must overcome, we must go from analog to digital, from paper and wait to computers and real-time. Large corporations are no longer the only ones playing in current times, modern information and communication technologies together with globalization have opened up endless possibilities for small and medium-sized companies. Reaction times, customer management, and the use of Business and Artificial Intelligence have become key points and, above all, accessible for companies of this century.
However, although companies have their own lives and personalities, they are still made up of human beings, who on many occasions are paralyzed by the fear of leaving their comfort zone, which leads us to find managers tied to business models and technologies that for good are no longer part of the present or that they consider that their companies do not need to change until it is too late or too late.
We surely agree that Digital Transformation is a need that must be satisfied for the good of our companies; We are sure we also agree that it must be faced with well-defined criteria, with organization and with the participation of all areas of the company. It is not up to the managers or the members of the technology department to determine what the other departments need, each one of them knows their needs better than anyone. Determining the scope, the actions to be carried out, the budget (not just money, but also time and resources), and the impacts it will have are very important points that should not be overlooked.
There are many paths, today I want to introduce you to one of them, which marks the steps to follow to obtain the expected results. We will be dividing it into 4 phases:
- Free minds and set the goal.
- Design and plan.
- Tasting to consolidate.
- Work towards your goals.
Free minds and mark the goal
This is, in my humble opinion, the most subjective part and the one that will require a lot of patience and human touch. It is about freeing minds from fear of the new and unknown and establishing where we want to go in this process. In this phase, our best allies will be the employees and therefore all those who are going to benefit must be represented. This does not mean that all company employees must participate, it means that representatives from each department must participate; As I mentioned at the beginning, they know better than anyone their responsibilities, challenges, and needs. I leave you a couple of ideas that you can implement.
- Make a meeting with those involved, in this meeting become a moderator or look for someone to help you with this, you can hire a consultant to advise you during the process, his function will be to align the participants towards the goal. Establish a clear and organized agenda, this will help everyone see the importance, organization, and seriousness of the meeting; in addition to making it more efficient.
- Create a collection of needs, forget how everything is now, what tools you have and what your process is like, forget everything. Then let your creativity fly and risk wanting new, innovative, and disruptive things. Classify them according to their impact and strategic relevance and in terms of the difficulty involved in implementing it. The categories are left to your free will.
There are two things that I will not tire of repeating to you; the first, put your focus on few things, but important and disruptive; the second, at first the center of everything should be your customers, ask yourself how new technologies can help me …?
Let’s look at some examples.
- How can new technologies help me deliver a higher quality product/service to my clients?
- How can new technologies help me reach more customers?
- How can new technologies help me deliver faster?
- How can new technologies help me offer products/services at more accessible prices?
- How can new technologies help me offer more personalized attention?
At the end of this phase, you must be clear about the goals, where you want to go, this will allow you to determine the scope and based on this scope, approximate the budget.
Design and plan
Very well, we already know where we want to go, it is time to identify which path we will take and at what time we will do it. It is highly recommended to design our strategy in a robust, agile, and iterative way. It is not advisable for a long time to pass to obtain the first results or for the first actions to conflict with the second.
The budget must always be kept under control and the results must be constant, they do not have to be large, but if constant, they must be communicated effectively and always receive feedback on their impact.
Inclusion must be a critical point in your design, you must be able to get on the digital transformation train to all layers of the company, make them feel that they are one of the beneficiaries of the process and that without their support it is not possible to carry it. finished. Do not forget to also create a system that allows you to celebrate the results, either by publishing articles on the company’s website, recognizing the most committed employees, or creating spaces to share experiences.
Delivery times are important, both realistically planning and sticking to them. Determine the level of quality that you must achieve, estimate the real-time you will need, and create a system that allows you to achieve them.
Something that will surely be very useful is to carry out a diagnosis of your company, from a technological and functional point of view. To do this, check your technological infrastructure, the software you use, and your processes. For this you can rely on experts outside the company; Sure, you could use a little Process Mining.
Tasting to consolidate
Until now, too much talking and too little acting, hours of meetings and thinking, but no results, some doubts begin to appear, negative leaders begin to influence others. It is time to give them a taste of what we are about to start and restore peace of mind.
Create a prototype solution. Choose an area and implant something, it doesn’t have to be the most complex or sophisticated, just take the first step, get the first results, take off.
You can choose a department, go back to the first phase and get their concerns and needs (don’t forget, few things and the client first, then we will improve ours), use the information to determine the format of the prototype, create the prototype and reserve time to socialize, including data collected in the evaluation process and do not forget to collect and incorporate comments throughout the process in socializations.
Work to achieve your goals
The next thing will be to work to achieve what you have proposed. There is no one way that is appropriate, this varies from one process to another, what is recommended is to use a preferably agile methodology and a working system where there is a lot of communication and feedback. It’s a good idea to be flexible, iterative, and scalable.
Get results, validate them, put them to work, socialize them and start with a new task. Create an innovative attitude, reward involvement, and positivism. Take criticism in good spirits and use it to improve. The fact that the different areas begin to propose, ask or even demand new things are very good signs, just be careful to manage expectations correctly. You can create a forum where people propose new innovative ideas without fear of being forgotten or looking silly, any idea is welcome.
And then what?
Well then, if everything went well, a continuous spiral of transformation will come, based on that digital and innovative thinking. And to tell the truth, you will not see anything relevant that marks you that it is over if you do not go out and compare with other organizations because innovation and transformation become so daily that they seem normal. You will give it to yourself the day you go out to see the rest of the world.