By Maeve Sugrue – Marketing Manager EMEA at DocuSign.
There are two common myths about digital transformation. The first is that “digital transformation” is reserved for enterprise businesses. The truth is technology is advancing at such a pace, that all businesses will need to undergo a digital transformation at some stage or face extinction.
The second is that digital transformation is just about replacing an analogue function with digital technology. Digital transformation is a business-wide initiative that is as much about transforming culture and processes as it is about about the technology. Digital transformation is a journey.
Successful digital transformation roadmap
A successful digital transformation requires change management. The entire team need to support the vision.
Here are 3 things you should do to get your team on board with digital transformation:
The first stage of creating a digital transformation framework is to do a comprehensive analysis of the business to understand the necessary requirements and potential outcomes. Define the value each change will bring to each business unit affected. Then, build a communication strategy to address the pain points at a department level as well as the wider business goals. Digital business transformation is almost twice as likely to succeed if there is clear communication of the timeline of implementing digital initiatives.
Building Your Team
“Land and expand” is by far the best way to achieve company-wide digital transformation. Or rather, in this case, building a team within the business to be the early adopters and help drive the vision. They can support the project, deliver results early on, then bring others onboard.
Executive sponsor(s): Your ‘Executive sponsor(s)’ will not only need to financially support the vision, but should also help communicate the plan and progress downstream.
The adoption champion(s): identify change management champions from across the business who will help drive the project and identify bottlenecks. Be mindful that the champions need to see their role as an opportunity as opposed to the additional workload. Depending on the size and complexity of your business you should ideally have one champion for every 20 impacted end users, broken down by team.
It’s likely that it won’t all be plain sailing from here. Preparing for resistance is equally as important as identifying adoption champions, says innovation expert Greg Satell:
“Much as any competitive strategy that doesn’t anticipate the response from competitors is doomed to failure, any digital transformation strategy that doesn’t take into account those who oppose change is unlikely to succeed.”
Digital Transformation Success
Define what success means to you. Gartner warns of over-engineering digital transformation measurement. You don’t need to measure everything – just focus on what is important. Paul Proctor, VP Analyst at Gartner, says:
“Choose KPIs that you can measure easily. Don’t try to build a KPI hierarchy. Select just 5 to 9 metrics to track, report and act on. The value of a metric lies in its ability to influence business decision making.”
While we all know how vital measuring digital transformation success is, an often overlooked element is circulating success. Digital transformations are 8x more likely to see success when senior management communicate progress and success openly across the business. People are inherently resistant to change, but the more value your transformation can deliver, the greater the support it will receive.
While digital disruption creates new opportunities in all companies, agile, smaller companies can use digital workflow to give them the power to move faster and see results more quickly. The trick is to design good processes early on and implement digital automation and technologies that help make those processes more scalable.
The ‘people’ side of digital transformation is a harder nut to crack. The fastest way to get the team bought into the vision, is through demonstrating success. Search for low hanging fruit, like DocuSign eSignature, which can be deployed within a week. The benefits can be realised instantly, and it is a great way to encourage wider adoption.
“The quicker you can get rid of the processes that are slowing you down, the faster you can get to outcomes,” Aragon Research CEO Jim Lundy.
To learn more about organisations that are undergoing digital transformation and customer experience transformation, download the Forrester whitepaper, The State of Systems Agreement 2019. You’ll learn how leading organisations are making a move toward automated processes to prepare, sign, act on and manage their agreements.