Key Ingredients of Successful Digital Transformation – Tech, Talent, & Skills
Elimination of unnecessary and repetitive processes. A constant culture of innovation to keep you at the forefront of the industry. Everything fast. Everything digital. Everything connected.
The prospect of digital transformation is certainly a pretty image, but the road to it is not at an easy one.
The buzz around digital transformation is quite huge. There are several technologies at play, coupled with an umpteen amount of tools and deployment models. Companies embarking on the digital journey can be easily overwhelmed with all the options and may make choices that set them on a wrong path.
Digital success is about the right strategy, which comprises selection of right technology, acquisition of right talent, and development of right skills. Let’s elaborate on that to see how these ingredients are essential for digital transformation success.
Selecting Right Technology
Big data, predictive analytics, cloud apps, mobility, IoT, AI, machine learning, RPA, AR/VR, chatbots, and so on – there’s an array of tech that promises a multitude of capabilities. But your organization don’t need them all. To select the right technology (or the right combination of them), you need to be clear on why you need digital transformation – is it to achieve operational excellence, enhance customer experience, or disrupt the core business model by developing innovative products/services?
Besides that, you also need to identify the derivative of that technology that can add value to your organization. For example, which machine learning algorithm would be ideal, or which RPA software can provide the most value, or whether some customization is needed in a standard tool, and so on. It is ideal to partner with an experienced vendor to make the job less challenging and time-consuming.
Recently, Trantor helped a leading electronics company that was facing a similar problem. The client needed an efficient way to map electric blueprints and make their meta information quickly accessible to engineers. The client had already tried a bunch of tech and tools, but results were always below par.
Trantor team analyzed the requirement thoroughly and architected a custom automated solution that uses computer vision (for image conversion) and best-fit machine learning algorithms (for extracting and processing data) to produce data with 95% accuracy and provide engineers actionable insights based on pre-defined business rules. With the new solution, the client was able to reduce its operation cost by 60%.
Acquiring Right Talent
A recent McKinsey study found that acquiring tech talent can accelerate transformation process by 20-30% and yield double-digit investment savings. It also predicted that by 2021, demand of such top digital talent will be 4 times of the supply (since digital transformation is a continuous process and companies won’t let go of the right talent once acquired).
These individuals, with their tech expertise and prior exposure to transformation projects, deeply understand what capabilities a digitally enabled business needs. Some key qualities you should look for when hiring these individuals (or change agents, as they are popularly known) include:
- Hands-on experience in developing/designing high-performing, scalable tech solutions
- Ability to translate market research and customer insights into digital solutions
- Act as catalyst for organization-wide adoption of the agile mindset, value-focused delivery, & continuous improvement
Developing Right Skills
When you look at the big picture, digital success depends on the collective skills and strengths of a multidisciplinary agile team. So, while having change agents onboard is crucial, it is also necessary to train existing team members on doing things the new way and define new KPIs to track progress.
For instance, suppose as a lending company, you have implemented RPA to quicken applicant assessment. But this automation would also need human supervision. And most likely it is to be done by people who were previously doing the same task manually. Therefore, they need to be trained for certain skills and capabilities required to manage new operations; and to be aligned with organization’s new goals.
Unlike regular software upgrades that can be successfully deployed as silos, digital transformation projects require constant collaboration to succeed – collaboration of technology vendor, tech talent, and employees. Therefore, only by ensuring these three ingredients in your digital transformation mix can you lay a solid foundation for success and constant improvement.