Of all the reasons a company might want to transform digitally, the most likely reason is survival.
The rapid change in the world makes it impossible for companies to survive without undergoing a digital transformation. In the wake of the pandemic, an organisation’s ability to adapt quickly to:
supply chain disruptions,
time to market pressures
and rapidly evolving customer expectations has become critical.
Consumer behaviour has shifted in many ways since the start of the pandemic. Optimised automated systems in areas like supply chain management broke down when faced with rapid shifts in both demand and supply. This is a reality that just about everyone endured on a personal level during the pandemic which crippled many families.
It’s still too early to guess which long-term consumer behaviour changes will remain. However, on the consumer side, digital has been accelerating in just about all categories.
A look at McKinsey’s data shows that the accelerated shift towards streaming and online fitness, shopping, and learning are likely to stay. The biggest shifts were around food. Both home cooking and online grocery shopping — a category that has been generally resistant to moving online — will probably stay more popular with consumers than in the past. Cashless transactions are also gaining momentum. On the B2B side, remote selling and service delivery is proving its worth. The movements towards digital currencies have also picked up tremendous momentum.
What does all this mean?
For CIOs, this means rapid experimentation is no longer optional. It should be an agenda item at every board gathering with proper technical expertise having a seat at the table.
The past year can certainly be seen as a forced test of many things we had thought and talked about but not tried or tested. Many industries or supply chains are underpinned by paper and legacy processes and are in desperate need of a technological overhaul. The legal industry is at the top of our list.
The top IT executives in today’s rapidly evolving organisations need to either match the pace of change, lead the pack, or risk falling behind. That’s the existential issue at stake in today’s digitally-infused times, where bold action must be actively supported by out-of-the-box experimentation and exploring.
This must be done while managing the relentless daily grind of:
and preparing for the unpredictable, such as a cyberattack or information breach.
The purpose behind the business is to create shareholder value by delivering customer value in return for revenue. Improving customer experience to match ever-evolving expectations should be a primary goal – and thus a crucial part of digital transformation.
+ Whether Digital Transformation matters should not even be up for discussion.
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