How to Overcome the 3 Key Challenges of Digital Transformation
As digital transformation specialists, we’ve worked with enterprises of various sizes from wide-ranging verticals such as healthcare, legal and professional services. And although every business’ journey was vastly different, with each one facing different challenges on their journey to cloud, we discovered that most of them encountered the same three core hurdles.
Some challenges of digital transformation were overcome by tightly integrating ourselves into each customer’s IT team and helping to align their vision with that of the senior stakeholders.
Overcoming these three hurdles will create a net benefit across the whole business but are most critical in a digital transformation plan:
- Accelerating the delivery of business goals and return on investment from digital transformation efforts
- Enabling innovation without sacrificing performance, reliability or security when adopting new platforms
- Encouraging positive organisational change that allows staff to develop new skills required for durable, scalable transformation
Our cloud consultants weren’t surprised to find that when cross-examining previous ‘transformation campaigns’ from our customers, the most common challenges weren’t centred around technology, but on people and processes instead.
That’s why enterprises need to install agents of change. They need to task someone, whether internal or external, with ensuring the business not only achieves its goals but does so in a timeframe that doesn’t rush the change, only delivering the most benefit and return-on-investment as soon as possible.
The 3 Key Challenges of Digital Transformation
1. Accelerating the delivery of business goals
What’s the top challenge our customers have faced on their Digital Transformation journeys? It wasn’t understanding their goals or what they had to do to achieve them.
The biggest challenge they faced was how to achieve their goals in the most efficient way possible.
Not necessarily the fastest way overall, but the fastest way that didn’t potentially jeopardise the productivity or security of the business. That didn’t go over budget or beyond the timeframe of delivering a worthwhile return on investment.
Successfully navigating the journey to the cloud is tricky. There’s a myriad of methodologies. A plethora of platforms. Quite simply, it’s easy to be led down the wrong path.
The key? Prioritisation. Define what needs doing first. What use cases are most beneficial to the business and how can you enable them swiftly?
A well-structured and organised digital transformation plan is necessary to keep all parties involved working coherently towards the same goal.
2. Enabling innovation
One of the main reasons why enterprises embark upon a digital transformation journey is to allow them to innovate now and, in the future, through a new approach to IT systems. No longer is IT a means to get work done. IT is the engine that drives business innovation.
However, it can actually be negative for a company to simply rip out legacy systems and install new technologies. Interoperability and lack of staff training can lead to lowered productivity levels.
Agents of change are tasked with delivering the benefits of cloud as well as ensuring a smooth transition to new platforms. And Digital Transformation is rightly that: a transformation. A considered process. Not a digital revolution.
Which is why an agent of change must consider the needs of the business above all else. Only then can they help deliver innovation, without sacrificing on-going performance, reliability or security of existing IT systems during the transformation.
3. Encouraging positive organisational change
There are many reasons why a business would elect someone to champion their cloud transformation efforts. It can be a long and complicated process, with many moving parts. Moreover, there can be constant friction for people to stray back to what they know.
Agents of change help enterprises ‘let go of their legacy mindset’ and adopt new workflows and methodologies.
But adopting organisational change goes just beyond this one person or team. It goes all the way down to the roots of the business. It requires a strong and robust ‘bottom-up’ approach that helps change the hearts and minds of those ‘on the frontlines’.
Changing the behavioural mindset of those working on IT day in, day out, can help speed up the transformation process and ensure its future success.
Rather than starting at the top and expecting the information to trickle down, such as in a legacy waterfall management model, enterprises need to adopt an ‘all for one and one for all’ approach. One that puts the business’ needs above personal preference. Above the inevitable ‘it’s how we’ve always done it’ mentality.
There are many challenges your business will face on its digital transformation journey. And in an increasingly crowded market, how do you find the right path? Synextra is cloud-agnostic, allowing our team of cloud experts to utilise years of industry knowledge to deliver impartial advice, guidance and hands-on support.
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