The buzz is all around “digital transformation”. Is transformation what your business needs right now. Maybe but probably not. You are already on the path to being digital. What is the framework you should look at from a planning point of view?
Below is a model of the stages a company may go through in being a digital business. It may help to see a “digital business” as a framework or ecosystem that is valuable for strategic planning. Some companies may choose to stop at stage 3. Others may push toward 4 and eventually 5. Stage 5 will clearly require a massive transformation if you at stage 1 right now. If you are at stage 1, it makes sense to move as rapidly as possible to stage 2. That is doable. That will give you traction to keep going.
- Digital Resister (Ad Hoc) – Business and IT digital initiatives are disconnected and poorly aligned with an enterprise strategy, and not focused on customer experiences. Business Outcome – Business is a laggard, providing weak customer experiences and using digital technology only to counter threats.
- Digital Explorer (Opportunistic) – Business has identified a need to develop a digitally enhanced, customer-driven business strategy, but execution is on a project basis. Progress is not predictable or repeatable. Business Outcome – Digitally enabled customer experiences and products are inconsistent and poorly integrated.
- Digital Player (Repeatable) – Business IT goals are aligned at the enterprise level around the creation of digital products and customer experiences, but not yet focused on the disruptive potential of digital initiatives. Business Outcome – Business provides consistent but not truly innovative products, services and customer experiences.
- Digital Leader (Managed) – Integrated, synergistic business IT management disciplines deliver digitally enabled product/service experiences on a continuous basis. Business Outcome – Business is a leader in its markets, providing world-class digital products, services, and experiences.
- Digital Disrupter (Optimized) – The disrupter is aggressive, at the enterprise level, to be disruptive in the use of new digital technologies and business models to affect markets. Ecosystem awareness and feedback is a constant input to business innovation. Customer expectations are significantly affected by the disrupters in the market place. Business Outcome – The business remakes existing markets and creates new ones to its own advantage and is a fast moving target for the competition.