We are in the era where your digital business capabilities, in addition to being excellent at your core product or service, are going to make or break your business. Customer journey towards your product or service starts digitally first. So you have plenty of opportunities to enhance experience of your customers and make them interact with your brand in ways never possible before. It is important that you provide smooth experience to customers along their journey towards your products/services or after purchasing your products/services. Not only customers, even your employees, having experienced plethora of consumer and social applications on mobile devices, expect smooth experience as they interact with every part of your organization. So you can’t take your employees for granted either. It doesn’t matter how big and established your business is, sophistication of today’s technologies and easy their affordability are enabling even startups to threaten you in short span of time. Any business that hasn’t recognized the importance of Digital Business is at the danger of losing their marketshare.
Once you understand the importance of Digital Business and decided to take action, it is important to have clear goals for your Digital Transformation activities. There are three kinds of opportunities with Digital Transformation: make your business operations more efficient, transform your operations and add more value to customers, and find new business models with digital avenues. You need to decide what your goals are to achieve the expected results. Here are some keys to navigate the challenges you will encounter once you set clear goals and set off activities to transform your business to Digital Business:
- Create a cross functional team of people with passion for driving change. No matter which area of the business they come from, common traits they will have are keen ability observe current practices, identify shortcomings in the current practices, have ideas to either to transform current practices or establish totally new ones. Usually these people have multiple interests even though they play a certain role in their current job.
- Get buy in from each of the functionals areas to get either part of their time or full time to participate in innovation activities
- Develop the culture of product development as opposed to treating everything as a project. This is a topic by itself for next blog. It simply means you don’t need to aim for the best at first. Focus on continuous improvement throughout the life of the product.
- Embrace agile and DevOp methodologies to quickly see ideas in action. Be quick to prototype and iterate as necessary. Also, do not hesitate to toss out an idea if that doesn’t seem like viable one
- Experiment with UX/UI paradigms and emerging technologies and frameworks such as Angular, React, Function as a service concepts, scalable databases NoSQL and NewSQL databases such as CosmosDB, Google Spanner, and CockroachDB
- Packaged solutions and COTS applications may not be the solution for this kind of innovation. You want to have a team capable of quickly developing and iterating custom applications as necessary.
- If you don’t have those development skills, find a noble and reliable development partner who can get you off the ground and into rhythm quickly