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Your guide to digital transformation

Why it’s important and how to ensure a smooth journey for your team

Executive summary

Despite it's rising popularity, digital transformation isn’t just a buzzword. The need for companies to frequently re-evaluate their ways of working, both internally and externally, is critical for success and longterm growth. 

70 percent of digital transformation projects don’t reach their goals — and the reason is rarely technology. Striking the perfect balance between your technology and the people using it is the key to a lasting transformation. To ensure a successful journey, use this guide to break down the buzzword and learn everything you need to know about digital transformation, including tips and mindsets to adopt along the way.

In this guide, you’ll learn:
  • What digital transformation is (and isn't)
  • The importance of people to your journey’s success
  • Mindsets and tips to fail-proof your transformation

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Your guide to digital transformation

Demystifying misconceptions about digital transformation

Love it or hate it, digital transformation isn’t just a buzzword. The need for companies to continually rethink how they use technology, people, and processes to fundamentally change business performance is critical for success. There are plenty of articles discussing what a digital transformation is; however, for long-term success it’s important to understand what a digital transformation is - and what it isn’t.

Misconception #1: Digital transformation = the digitalization of your company

Digital transformation is more about strategy and people than the technology itself. Yes, technology is important but it’s how you use it that will fundamentally shift and improve how work is getting done, often from a cultural and process perspective. This can make the concept of digital transformation confusing and potentially lead to an unsuccessful transformation.

Bringing in new technology to simplify and speed up work is not a digital transformation. Ask yourself, what are you transforming? You might be optimizing your current practice but your methodologies have not changed. Instead, try generating new ideas and concepts on how to use business technology in new ways.

Misconception #2: Digital transformation is a destination

Digital transformation is a journey, not a destination. There is no way to “hack-it” or cut corners; this will only be detrimental to your efforts. Why? Because it’s impossible to know all of the challenges and changes an organization will encounter during a transformative journey. It’s imperative that you aren’t too committed to one direction;  keep an agile mindset.

As there is consistently new technology, and therefore new opportunities, it could be argued that an innovative organization starts a digital transformation that never really ends. Think of your company as a ship and the digital transformation as the ocean. To stay upright, balanced, and moving forward, you need three main things: your people and culture, your strategy, and your technology.

While it’s true that you should always be working on all these things, you won’t need to focus on all three at once. You might start with a strong culture and strategy, but need to advance your tooling. Later on, you might have found the appropriate technology but your strategy shifts.

To be successful in a digital transformation you must embrace agility and become comfortable in a perpetual state of evolution.

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