The time for digital transformation is now. Not tomorrow, not next year, but right now. Of course, this will come as no surprise to most business leaders, as Covid-19 has sped up the digitization of many industries. As important as it is to make your business a digital one quickly, it's equally important to do it right. Sloppy transitioning does away with many of the benefits that digitization brings along with it, such as increased dynamism or financial resiliency. If you're looking to make sure that your company makes the leap to digital the right way, here are three key rules to follow:
1. Lead your way into it.
Make the digital transformation happen to your business; don't let it come at you from your flank. Research from Organic reports that 62 percent of employees feel there is a lack of leadership direction where digital transformation is concerned. According to cloud-based contact center platform Five9, it is imperative to get all executives on board to outline a successful companywide digital transformation strategy. Create a clear, multiquarter plan for your business with digitization at its core. Identify key sectors that can be transformed and at what rate they could do so. Consult with your team about what corners of your business might be the best places for you to start. By creating an atmosphere of digital leadership, you'll inspire just the mindset your workers need to pull it off.
2. Learn from -- and edge out -- your competition.
Not all companies have fully submerged themselves in the digital world, but those that have are already starting to reap the benefits: A study from digital advisory firm Gartner found that while only 42 percent of CEOs have begun the digital transformation of their business, 56 percent of those who have are already seeing a positive impact on their profits. Long story short, you should be able to recognize, partially on the basis of standings alone, which players in your sector are transforming appropriately. Use this knowledge to learn which aspects of the transformation you may want to imitate, but don't forget to watch industry laggards as well: Those that have transitioned unsuccessfully can teach you just as much about what you shouldn't do as the success stories teach you about what you should.
3. Always focus on the customer.
According to a study conducted by digital banking software firm CSI, 86 percent of customers expect -- not want, expect -- a seamless digital experience across all platforms when dealing with companies. With numbers like that on the line, the impetus for digital transformation is clear: Your clients are demanding it. Even so, never digitize just for technology's sake. Make sure that each of your moves comes with a clear benefit to the consumer; if it doesn't, it's likely not worth investing your time and energy in. The digital transformation is already here, but the choice is still yours as to how you'll navigate through it. By following these principles, you can be sure to emerge on the other side of all this with a stronger enterprise than ever before.