Insider’s tip: Your digital transformation begins with the ‘i’
Digital transformation is the use of technology in such a way that it creates new capabilities and innovation for customers rather than simply to support current business practices. They can be a highly positive enabler for business change – but unfortunately, not all digital transformations succeed. So how does your business improve the odds and derive greater commercial benefits?
To me, information, specifically actionable information, is a key ingredient for digital transformation success. Why do I say this?
We operate in a business landscape where information is power. Ready access to information on your operations means you have the power to make timely, meaningful adjustments, minimising costs and maximising results. Having insightful information about your customers leads to quicker opportunity and value creation. Similarly, having the right information about your competitive landscape enables your business to capitalise on every advantage.
To realise the benefits of digital transformation, organisations must better access, integrate and analyse their data to create business insights that lead to real change. The ability to collate data from a wide variety of sources is key, as data then becomes actionable information and the common lens for business and IT leaders to shape their digital transformation. Organisations typically have tremendous amounts of siloed data created by different business units and various organisational support applications. For example, sales forecast data is in one place, marketing data somewhere else and customer data is captured in yet another place – making it hard for any of these departments to gain critical, real-time insight about the sales cycle or customer journey. This is why at ADP, we help our clients gain deeper insight from their data at every possible opportunity, such as to fight payroll fraud.
Every business can take simple steps to better manage, govern, consolidate and analyse their data to gain actionable information – and your IT team can help accelerate this transition. Gaining flexibility and speed in our digital age demands IT functions operate under new paradigms. We need to capitalise on operational efficiency, integrate technologies into solid commercial outcomes and help our business peers deliver new opportunities. To achieve this, data is the foundation that, when expertly shaped and modelled, turns into actionable information and creates business insights and strategic outcomes.
Our data challenge will only continue to expand. Research clearly demonstrates that the volume and complexity of data that we struggle to manage today, will be dwarfed by what is being generated by an ever growing number of data creators.
Organisations that plan and invest poorly in their digital transformation typically falter and end up on the express lane to failure. So act now and ensure your project is built around your information needs – get your business ready to turn your data into actionable information of commercial value.
Written by: Chris Howard, Director, Infrastructure & Operations, ADP Australia and New Zealand