It’s time to stop experimenting with digital experiences and start walking the walk. For years, organizations have been iterating in a crawl-walk-run cycle that seems to never get them fully digitized. To break the cycle, organizations must take bold steps that allow them to actuallybecome digital.
Going digital means full participation in the Digital+ Economy: a hyperconnected world where employees, customers, and partners all come together to do their part in achieving common goals through innovation and problem-solving. Call it “entering the age of co-creation.”
Organizations can’t just be a littledigital orpartially digital if they intend to extract all of the benefits of the Digital+ Economy — velocity, agility, and competitiveness. They must commit fully. And that means adopting a mindset that differs from how most organizations have tackled digital transformation in the past. It means prioritizing the three all-important groups of stakeholders — employees, customers, and partners — while building new systems and environments. This way, all stakeholders can contribute to company-wide goals by leveraging resources in a positive, collaborative way to deliver the desired outcomes.
But how do you get there? A lot of moving, interconnected parts come into play for companies to achieve the state of beingdigital. Three main components must be in place — structure, data, and automation. Without them it’s difficult, if not impossible, for an organization to reach its full digital potential.
Set the Foundation
Everything starts with the structural underpinnings that enable a digital environment. The foundation needs to be composable. That’s a term you are sure to hear more and more as companies digitize.
A composable architecture provides the rock-solid bed upon which an organization can build flexible and scalable tools that provide the right experience to its stakeholders. Composition makes it possible to integrate any number of third-party tools and services that empower
stakeholders to collaborate and innovate, both in addressing current needs and anticipating future challenges and opportunities.
A composable approach enables modularity, so users can take pieces of previous projects and apply them as they work on new ones. Organizations gain the flexibility to put different pieces together as they see fit — and to satisfy customer preferences. This approach is enhanced by the ability to mix and match tools and services that drive velocity and flexibility without the restraints of vendor lock-in.
Put the Data to Work
With a composable structure in place, it gets easier for organizations to make use of their data. Remember, everything starts with data — where you get it, what it means, and how you use it. For many organizations, this hasn’t always been easy because data comes in fast and furiously from different sources in various formats.
With the right tools, data doesn’t have to be mysterious or scary. And it needs to be made available to all relevant parties so they all can leverage it in their jobs. Of course, this requires a governed approach to ensure that any data subjected to regulatory compliance is properly handled and secured.
A democratic approach to data also requires making digitization tools available anywhere that stakeholder – be it employees, customers or partners – need to access it. After all, being digital means giving everyone the capacity to engage with data where, when, and how they need it.
Automate Repeatable Processes
Digital organizations automate everything that can be automated, and this usually starts with repeatable, predictable processes that are time-consuming when handled manually. Automation provides the velocity that digital organizations need, empowering users to make decisions fast enough to keep up with digital ecosystems and the power of personalization.
This means that with automation, companies can accelerate decisions to shape and deliver outcomes. Automation also delivers velocity in content creation. It takes everything an organization creates, no matter where, and helps the organization deliver it into the right hands at the right moment.
Once an organization is able to get these three components in place, it can reach the state of being digital. It is able to walk the digital walk — to push the boundaries of innovation by enabling all stakeholders to actively and collaboratively participate in shaping its future.
Hear from Liz Miller of Constellation Research on what it means to be digital, today and tomorrow.