Connecting Technology and Business.

Digital Transformation - The strategy for transformation

The challenge. Digital Transformation is not a linear process. Many enterprises have already kickstarted a number of digital initiatives. Business compulsions and competition from outside might have been the factors for such initiatives but a coordinated and concerted effort to transform the enterprise from the traditional to a customer-centric organization requires much more than such disparate initiatives. Such a transformation would touch the vital organs of the business – Executives and employees, business processes and operations and even products and services.

Many business decision makers as well as technical influencers do not see the urgency to transform yet. The top management has settled down in the traditional style for too long and many decision makers are quite seniors in their field who had seen success in the traditional way that the mandate to transform gets little attention. It is an elephant in the room that nobody dares to deal with. They keep reacting to threats many of the times instead of shaping the future for their enterprise themselves.

The reality. Enterprises that aspire to transform use technology better than their competitors. They build not only digital capabilities but also leadership capabilities to stay in the right path during this journey so that the desired destination is reached with minimal obstructions. They may need to build skills in different areas and redirect their efforts from time to time. A joint research program between Capgemini Consulting and the MIT center for Digital Business recommends a comprehensive strategy for this transformation in enterprises.

Enterprises must first realize that the business scenario that they have been thriving on for so long is fast transforming into a digital oriented one. They must sense the real threat from outside in the form of startups and fast movers who are already enlightened on the role of digital to transform the way businesses are forced to go. The disruption created by digital technology is real and here to stay so that there is no choice but to jump into the bandwagon of digital transformation. They must do a deep dive into their existing capabilities and skills that would need course correction, development or rebuilding.

Enterprises must also focus on investment in the right areas for the digital transformation to be put on the right path so that it takes off and stays at the right pace. The whole organization needs to be mobilized towards the achieving of the pre-determined goals with the digital initiative from the top and percolating to the lower levels. Taking the organization together in the digital journey is essential and leadership skills are mandatory for this journey to be successful. While there might be various milestones in the way, enterprises should have a clearly defined destination in this journey. Some of the milestones might be reached sooner than the others but sustaining the transformation throughout and well beyond the perceived destination is essential as the business environment is set to see more disruptions than ever.