The digital transformation model is a representation of how a company’s digitalization will look like. There are several models that you can choose from, to ensure that your digital transformation outshines that of others. Major digital transformation models include the digital native model, the digital follower model, and the hybrid model among others.
In this blog, we will elaborate on the need for a digital transformation model and the best ones to choose from.
Let us begin by first understanding digital transformation and why it is important for your company.
Meaning and Importance of Digital Transformation
Digital transformation is the process of integrating digital solutions into business operations to enjoy smoother and uninterrupted services. The procedure guarantees higher customer satisfaction, an improved ROI, and many other benefits which make it a lucrative option.
Digital transformation is quite important in today’s world and this is why companies are increasingly shifting to digital solutions. In this section, we will talk about the importance of digital transformation.
a. Better customer experience: Digital tools help companies cater to the demands of customers through AI-enabled chatbots that are available 24×7. It can also help suggest similar items to purchase by analyzing their previous experience.
b. Higher productivity: It fastens business processes and creates a more innovative and agile environment. It reduces repetitive tasks and allows employees to focus on tasks that require human attention. This results in higher productivity.
c. Data on the go: Data is prioritized by all companies and digital solutions automate business operations. This makes data collection easier, along with other tools like smart sensors, and weighing scales.
d. More rational decisions: Digital solutions automate tasks, provide better insights, and reduce the possibility of human error. With better data and insights, companies can rationalize their decisions by keeping in mind the company’s overall benefit.
How Has COVID-19 Changed Digital Transformation?
The realm of digital transformation has undergone significant changes on account of COVID-19. Let us understand the impact of the pandemic on it.
Mercer’s Swift believes that COVID-19 has largely shaped the digital transformation agendas of companies across the world. With a larger number of people working from their homes, the experience of employees with technology has become important, and a significant factor in completing tasks. COVID-19 has also had a significant impact on the digital transformation.
Some of the ways how the pandemic has changed digital transformation are elaborated on in the paragraph for a clear understanding;
- Accelerated Digital Adoption: During the pandemic, many businesses and organizations adopted digital technology to stay operated due to covid protocols.
- Remote Work: It has been widely implemented worldwide.
- Cybersecurity: With the rapid adoption of digital technologies, it has also increased the risk of cybersecurity which has further added to implementing more robust cybersecurity measures.
- E-Commerce: It has grown due to increased demand for online shopping during the pandemic, leading to the optimization of e-comm platforms.
According to McKinsey, the pandemic has sped up the adoption of digital transformation technologies for several years. It has also helped companies realize the need to stay competitive and shift their mindset toward a more flexible and agile business model.
II. Three Requirements of a Digital Transformation Model
A good digital transformation model comprises three major requirements, which are as follows:
You must begin by digitizing yourself completely, that is, eliminating the use of paper to keep records and using digital platforms. Digitizing will help you access all your documents easily and safeguard them against risks like data loss. Moreover, this new addition can reduce costs drastically, enhance collaboration across departments and allow easy access to all your data.
Here are three signs that you need to digitize right now:
- You spend a lot of time collecting and accessing information.
- You are uncertain about the updated data.
- Your employees work intensively on eliminating irrelevant data.
Automation of tasks helps companies stay focused on functions that require human intervention, while digital tools do the needful. This not only reduces the burden on employees but also increases the productivity of the business drastically. The best part about automating processes is that all employees are on the same page as transparency increases. Moreover, cases of non-compliance reduce significantly.
Here are two signs that you need to automate right now:
- Your employees spend time manually entering information.
- You possess zero visibility into key business operations.
Transformation allows companies to encourage innovation through constant experiments. It introduces a centralized system for all business functions to provide customers and employees with a fulfilling experience. It also provides valuable insights, integrates the systems, and assesses the growth of your company through data analytics.
Here are three signs that you need to transform right now:
- You cannot assess the completion of targets.
- You are unable to make data-driven decisions.
- You wish to centralize your systems.
If your digital transformation model consists of these three requirements, you are ready for a change in the functioning of your company.
III. Top 6 Digital Transformation Models
While you might be sure about your transformation process, it is equally important to ascertain the digital transformation model that you want to follow. If you have a pre-planned model in your mind, things tend to fall into place easily. Now we will discuss the top 6 models that you can choose from.
a. The Digital Native Model
This digital transformation model suits businesses that have been digital since their inception. It is beneficial for companies that want to deal with threats and leverage digital opportunities. This model comes out as a more agile and innovative way of digitalizing and facilitates growth.
However, the digital native model may be hard to reproduce for companies that have just shifted to the digital realm. It is a demanding process that requires a complete change of business operations and might need reskilling.
b. The Digital Laggard Model
If you are a business that is lagging behind the current trends of digitalization, this digital transformation model is only for you. It aids companies to adapt to technologically advanced competitors firmly and does not affect business operations largely. However, it can be expensive for smaller companies, and may also require them to work quickly.
c. The Digital Follower Model
Not all companies want to lead the way, and it is fine to learn from our competition. So, this digital transformation model is meant for those companies that wish to walk in the footsteps of their competitors. The major advantage of it is that it helps you stay relevant and competitive.
However, merely following other companies and not adding uniqueness to one’s process can be disruptive. Also, they may not be able to stay up-to-date with the market trends considering that they are just following.
d. The Digital Hybrid Model
This is a combination of the digital and analog modes and employs both methods in the working of the business operations. It is essentially good for companies that want to digitalize without keeping the digital at the core. The best part about this digital transformation model is that it does not require complete modernization and is not very expensive. However, it is a time-consuming and resource-intensive process, hence, unsuitable for companies that want work done quickly.
e. The Pilots and Proofs of Concept Model
Many companies tread carefully and try to run each process through pilot tests. This digital transformation model is suited to those companies largely. It does not prioritize the digital aspect too much and can be deployed in phases through constant testing.
A major disadvantage of this model is that it is time-consuming and demands cautious strategizing and execution of plans. Moreover, it is not guaranteed that it will result in a successful digital transformation.
f. The Co-Creation Model
As the name suggests, this digital transformation model is about co-creating the entire plan with the key stakeholders of the company, including the workforce and customers of the company. Just like the above model, this one does not prioritize the digital aspect either.
The good part is that it allows companies to earmark processes as per their needs and create more innovative results through constant experiments. However, it prioritizes communication between all parties and requires apt skills and knowledge about the field.
In this blog, we have discussed the importance of digital solutions and the three elements of a good digital transformation model. We have also included a list of the top six models you can choose from. We have also included a list of the top six models you can choose a good digital transformation model for your company!