The Hurdles to Cross for Digital Transformation
We all know already that digital transformation is inevitable for sustained growth of the business. As many advantages as it showcases it could, sometimes, also be disruptive. The other side of the Digital Transformation coin are also to be analyzed deeply before the transition is decided upon. The very first point to understand is that Digital Transformation is more than merely digitizing the documents or data. It is a radical transformation which takes time and effort to effect and settle down. It involves a comprehensive collaboration of every department within the organization and investments in terms of IT and resources. The barriers need to be broken carefully so as to make sure that the transformation is not completely disruptive. A smooth transformation is possible when you analyze the possible challenges and prepare to resolve them one by one.
Here are some challenges we can look into in general, for all industries. As the business changes, the challenges also may change, but a closer look would reveal that there’s a general trend which can be tackled tactfully.
Changing company culture
In a survey done on finding out the challenges that surround digital transformation, 63% suggested that the company’s changing culture is one of the major reasons for resistance. The older the company is the more difficult the transformation could be. More than the company’s age, their current culture followed makes the difference. A traditional culture with strict hierarchy’s and rigid rules may find the transformation extremely difficult and resist the change. But if it is more flexible and adaptive, the transformation will go much smoother.
Finding reliable data and sources
Digital transformation requires a lot of information. Data mining is a popular and effective method used to extract information available from the internet, which is a vast resource of information. But finding reliable information and sources of information that is relevant to your business can be challenging.
Tools and expertise for analyzing data effectively
Supposing you have sourced your information from reliable resources or purchased them from reliable vendors, the next step is to run them through the expertise tools that analyze them in detail and come up with the insights. This is also as important as the reliability of data source since the right algorithms applied only would make the information worthy of dependence. Finding the right tools for analytics could be the next hurdle to cross!
Any kind of transformation would cost the company money, effort, time and resources. Digital transformation, being an overall transformation, involves all of these. There’s cost involved in sourcing information, converting data, processing it, recruiting the right resources, and the process changes. For smaller companies and start-ups, cost can be one of the major challenges that resist digital transformation.
Lacking a clear vision
As we mentioned earlier, digital transformation is a time-consuming project which encompasses transforming most of the business processes, if not all of them. It is hence, important to have the short-term and long-term goals clearly defined to make sure that the transformation can be tracked in the real-time and necessary adjustments can be made. But when you lack a clear vision, the transformation may be misaligned which would have a disastrous effect on the entire process.
Internal resistance to impending transformation
Kodak’s resistance to change paved the way for its failure, despite being the first to invent the digital camera first. That’s why this internal resistance needs be countered first. More recently ANZ’s downfall on account of internal resistance can be cited to its frozen middle, which is tough to thaw. But once it starts thawing, it reaches the meltdown successfully quite fast. This requires a lot of effort from the top management to make the rest below understand how effective the transformation would be and how radically it will change their productivity. More than often, the internal resistance is due to a fear of losing their current stance which the top management can overcome smoothly by involving them in the change process.
It is important for the management as well as the rest of the resources to understand that Digital Transformation is not a quick fix to its data problems. Careful calculations, meticulous planning, and strenuous efforts are a part and parcel of successful digital transformation. It is a time-consuming affair and needs all the departments to hold each others’ hands during the entire process. There may be data disruptions, outages and complete chaos in terms of operations and management, but as the transformation completes, everything falls into the right places which makes available reliable data, state of the art analytics, efficient resources, and well-aligned business processes, all of which help you leap forward to success and sustenance.