How to build a successful Digital Transformation roadmap?
Digital Transformation is a phenomenon that every company must deal with and it is a reality. It is a top priority for boardroom executives. Most companies know that digital transformation is vital to survival.
Customers are demanding new instant experiences, partners want more visibility & greater access, and employees want greater convenience and work from anywhere.
Many companies are claiming that they have started it but those initiatives are isolated or tactical. If not executed properly the only result is failure.
As you will look at weather reports, travel times, flight connections, hotel reviews before going on holiday journey, similarly you will need a road map for navigation from point A to point B.
The digital roadmap has 3 main leavers:
- Strategy: to make it completely clear how digital transformation support overall business strategy, define 30,60,90 days & beyond plan for measurements
- Technology: what are the tools and technologies you will need to go from current state to future state – big data, analytics, mobility, IoT, cloud, microservices etc, dedicated hardware, software innovation labs, standards, guidelines, security
- Processes & People: who are the leaders to drive the digital, what is the organization structure, operational integration of all processes, how to change to customer centric culture, training to employees and empower them
It is all about starting with baby steps, gaining trust from business by delivering quick value and celebrating and marketing the successes to generate internal buzz.
The roadmap begins with a digital vision, mission & assessment of the digital maturity of your business today. Once the assessment and vision are completed, then next step it becomes possible to identify the systemic gaps that need to be filled. Then those steps can be built into the roadmap.
Here are the broad milestones of a successful digital transformation roadmap:
- Boardroom/Senior management buy in, decision to go Digital and drive it across organization
- Cultural alignment & commitment to Digital from board of directors to entry level employees
- Identify and assess the current state of the organization on Digital
- Put Customer first – Prepare customer journey maps to identify all the touch points with organization
- Find out pain areas at each touch point and respective stakeholders involved who can correct them
- Prioritize and break them in small projects to adopt fail fast approach. If anything did not work, just accept the failure, publish the learnings and move on.
- Seek partners to help you in your journey, who take shared risk and shared rewards
- Deploy agile implementation approach for quick results
- Market your successes to whole world and repeat the process for next pain area
Transformation programs may be massive and take place over multiple years, but understanding the ROI for each phase helps keep a multi-year journey on track. With a structured approach, all of the moving parts can be managed and progress sustained throughout this journey.
Finally, you know when you are digital transformed?
- When there is nobody having “digital” in their title
- There is no separate digital strategy than company’s business strategy
- There are no posters or marketing focused on digital within the organization
Enterprises that adapt, evolve and exploit this new digital reality will thrive, while those that do not, will be lost to the sands of time like Dinosaur.