Digital transformation - At which step is your organization?
WorldIT has been on the market for almost 20 years, seen hundreds of diverse businesses and provided along side, thousands of different solutions. Let us share some comments of what we have seen on organizations on the SMB market segment regarding their digital transformation roadmap. Where would you position your organization?
Digital transformation is a generic concept that traverses all areas of an organization. The actual implementation of digital transformation can be composed of actions like:
- Re engineer and modernize processes
- Improvement of customer experience
- Integrating systems
- Creating dynamic and flexible working environments
- Tutor and create technological skills on the workforce
Independently of the organization’s size, all of them eventually need to address the mentioned or additional aspects for a successful digital transformation.
In fact, today, investment on the digital transformation is no longer optional. Competition is fierce and global and if you don’t, at least, keep up, there is always an alternative for your customers, partners and employees just around the corner. Of course, this varies but more often than less, management is (re)acting, and takes decisions first based on their pain points and secondly on strategy.
The first steps
One of the biggest incentives for any kind of change is regulatory. If your country tax office mandates by law that certain parameters are complied with, like VAT Monthly maps submission, or certified accounting software, organizations don’t really have much option than to comply. That said, this explains why just about all businesses in developed countries started their digitization, implementing ERPs (Enterprise Resource Planning software) with first focus on the accounting, not really a bad thing as it many times sets a foundation for the roadmap.
Another drive in change is just natural demand from the parties interacting with the organization. Can you name today any company where at least a contact email doesn’t exist, or that does not have an institutional presence on the web/social media?
The moment you have a web presence (yep a digital channel) and an ERP, it’s very typical to build on those, especially on a growing business. Having employees over the phone delivering status of orders, taking orders from sales reps, producing all sorts of documents and reports. Well, if the ERP supports delivering this improvements, very often the organization will try to extend the ERP to implement it, otherwise they simply don’t, and start falling behind.
Evolve and fuel the machine
So, what we've seen is that, at this stage of evolution, management many times realizes, there is no place to monitor and follow up on things like opportunities and sales, or how their marketing (if present) is driving new business. They need answers to questions like, what is my sales forecast, how many leads are generating sales, how is the performance of my sales, service and marketing reps? How am I managing my channel interactions on social networks, web, mobile channels?
This is where most CRM systems give organizations a huge advantage. Their ability to integrate with existing systems and processes, and also support multiple and diverse channels keeping a centralized view of customers and partners, helps companies perform better, deliver better, and, increase business overall, keeping in-house a lot of the investment made previously on the ERP systems.
Additionally, advanced CRM systems can support a whole new universe of processes – supporting marketing to expose customers and partners to your products and services, KPIs monitoring, e-commerce systems, portals, social networks, mobile apps, seamless channels communication (voice, SMS, web, whats app, push notification etc) and much much more.
Naturally, areas where digital transformation can bring best value, depends also on the type of business. Things like document management systems, or production control systems, can have higher priority and make a huge difference on the performance of the organization, but general rule, they will be as more effective as they can “publish” their information effectively to whoever is front facing: Sales and Service Reps, who are the engine to bring and maintain business rolling with good sales and top customer satisfaction.
The digital transformation will be ever rolling, and a mature organization can always and further evolve, bringing in even more sophistication like artificial intelligence analysis, OCR digitization, Augmented reality etc.
Its a broad subject and every organization is, and can be different. But many are at the stage where with controlled investment, the implementation of a CRM system can bring a huge value to the organization's business.