The digital transformation of business is here, and organizations investing in supportive technology are setting the new standards for how business is – and is expected to be – done. These forward-thinking leaders are pushing the boundaries of innovation and communication to redefine how their companies work, serve, and grow in the digital age.
In a 2015 Accenture survey, 62 percent of business and technology executives say they are investing in digital technologies, and 35 percent are comprehensively investing in digital as part of their overall business strategy.
But what about companies that have yet to invest in digital technology? How can these organizations survive a dynamic shift from legacy operations to the digital change we see happening today?
A complete digital transformation of business affects all areas of the organization, from leadership through operations, customer service, and marketing. Digital business does not exist in a silo, but instead “digitizes every employee, process, product, and service.”1
That being said, digital transformation can happen in stages. While having a big-picture strategy is key to a successful transformation, businesses can begin their journey with a single initiative.
For example, if a company’s current website is not mobile-friendly, then it may consider responsive web design as a way to increase the website’s visibility and usability on mobile devices. If the organization addresses customer questions and concerns by telephone only, then it may be time to look at web-driven, lead generation forms to save time and money. Or, perhaps the company can explore the viability of an online storefront to expand the reach of certain products or services to a larger consumer network.
In the digital era, we tend to see technologies evolving very rapidly in response to consumer demands. In the digital transformation of a company, however, entire processes are undergoing a major overhaul. The resources it takes to switch to an entirely digital organization are considerable, but most business leaders confirm the wait is worth it.
Eighty-five percent of CEOs in the U.S. say digital technologies deliver “quite high” or “very high” value in customer experience. Eighty-nine percent say the same about data and data analytics investments, and eighty-four percent agree in terms of operational efficiency gains.2
Think Beyond the Business Itself
Besides the digital transformation happening within the business, organizations that want to survive this massive shift need to consider what is happening in their industries, too. As more organizations invest in digital technologies, the opportunities to collaborate on products and services will increase. Digital businesses will want to partner with like-minded companies in their verticals to help redefine what the industry is doing, and how, to gain a competitive advantage.
This collaborative mindset is how businesses in the digital age will not only survive but also thrive as more digital organizations enter the marketplace.
Businesses that want to ensure their longevity must begin the journey to digital transformation today, lest they concede their customers to the faster, more efficient processes of other companies. With the prolific nature of digital devices – and the growing populations of digital businesses and consumers – companies need to position themselves to stand out in a crowded landscape of technology-enabled organizations.
Surviving the digital transformation of modern business is not only mandatory at this point, but it is also very possible when approaching the process from a realistic, entrepreneurial, and adaptive mindset.
1Accenture Technology Vision 2015 Report
2Digital Transformation, Re-imagine from the outside in. Accenture Interactive, 2014.