Digital transformation : Pillars and Pitfalls

Author: Loren Rose, Global Kinetic COO

With the current global situation, now more than ever, companies are needing to digitally transform their businesses in order to survive and remain competitive against a changing and unpredictable landscape. With additional lockdowns looming around the globe, and the resultant fundamental shift in customer behaviour going forward, companies will need to become increasingly adaptable at increasing their digital offerings, as well as their speed to market, in order to secure business continuity.

Now is the time for rapid and large-scale digital transformation.

What is digital transformation?

Digital transformation is the journey a company takes to establish a digital competency and presence in order to be more effective and remain competitive. At its core, it is a fundamental redesign of how a company engages people, processes, and technology, to deliver value to their customers.

Why embark on digital transformation?

What are the pillars and pitfalls?

People

Having people with the right skills, the appropriate mindset, and level of seniority and maturity is critically important for the success of a digital transformation.

Your team needs to be made up of people that are skilled in agile delivery and thinking. If these people do not exist within your current pool of talent, you will need to either recruit or embark on a retraining strategy. Retraining strategies are most effective when paired with the right mindset(culture), quick-learning problem-solvers that can embrace the change and uncertainty of new processes and technology. Even then, they will only succeed when your team is paired with seniors with the appropriate skills and experience that can mentor them and carry the responsibility of delivery in the short term.

In addition to your delivery team, the success of your digital transformation will strongly hinge on buy-in from people across your organisation, particularly your leadership team and HR.

Pitfalls

Process

A successful Agile software delivery process is born out of a solid understanding of Agile development frameworks and practices, how to apply them, and how to continuously improve and adapt that process to a specific environment. While the Agile methodology promotes incremental change, you cannot incrementally transition from waterfall to Agile.

To succeed, you need to fully embrace the Agile process from day one, and not just the parts you like, or that check the boxes that make your stakeholders happy.

Pitfalls

Technology

Technology serves as the catalyst for, the output of, and the tool used to deliver digital transformation. In order to take advantage of technological advancements the appropriate infrastructure and DevOps tools need to be put in place.

Pitfalls

Culture

Digital transformation is at its essence a cultural change. If the appropriate culture is not instilled or accepted in the team, alongside an effective change management process, the digital transformation has a reduced chance of success. You will need to start by transforming your culture into one that embraces change and innovation. A strong, transformative culture, where teams are not afraid to fail, as they are able to easily and quickly respond and course-correct.

Culture is unique to each company, and even to each team. It is not something that can be lifted and shifted from another successful organisation, but rather it is best to first focus on instilling the correct behaviours within your teams, and allowing the culture to radiate out from there.

Pitfalls

Conclusion

Digital transformation is a challenging endeavour, which is why Global Kinetic is perfectly positioned to guide you through it using our proven digital transformation engagement model.

People :

Process :

Technology :

Culture :

Contact us at hello@globalkinetic.com  to start your digital transformation journey with us.