The 4 must-haves to succeed in your digital transformation
By Cédric Dufault-Gagné, Digital Marketing Specialist at Dubuc Marketing
Have you ever wondered whether it would be beneficial for your SME to make the digital shift? You have probably already weighed the pros and cons on the corner of your office trying to see more clearly. STOP! Of course, automating business processes would be beneficial to you; that's not the question. The digital transformation has proven itself in large companies since the 90s. The real question is: is your organization ready to make this shift?
Here are 4 essential aspects to study within your management team in order to prepare well before this important transition.
#1 A well-defined business process
In order to achieve a progressive and efficient digital transformation, it is essential to ensure that all business processes of the company have been defined and assimilated beforehand. Absolutely everything you do on a daily basis, from prospecting to after-sales service to production / delivery of the service, must be clear and modeled for optimal understanding. These business processes will be the foundation on which digital tools will rest.
If your business processes are not perfectly well defined, the digital transition will be even more complicated to put in place; you may have confused employees and a lack of consistency between reality and software data.
#2 Adequate and adequate resources within the organization
There are two types of resources to consider in order to ensure a good transition to digital transformation:
- IT Resources:
Depending on your strategy, you must ensure that you have sufficient technology resources to begin this process. Is my server powerful enough to support a lot of data? Do I have computers that are modern enough to use recent software? Is my network adequate?
- Human ressources :
Although digital saves time, it will still be necessary for a human to take care of it. Do your employees have the necessary skills? Do they have time to take care of that? How will the arrival of such technology be welcomed in your team?
So many good questions like these that are better to ask sooner rather than later ...
#3 What do we want to measure and what do we want to improve?
The digital transformation of SMEs must first be part of a desire to improve the organization, productivity and efficiency of its structure.
Following the definition of the business process, you should be able to list opportunities to improve your organization. Recognizing the problem is the first step in the evolution of business processes. The second is to determine Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) so that your digital tools can track progress. Acquiring a management software and using it only for archiving information is a serious mistake too often made by organizations too eager to go digital.
So take the time to define clear, precise and relevant objectives: according to your business strategy. Always pay attention that the KPIs that result from the objectives are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound (SMART).
#4 Adapt your process to digital or build your platform around your process?
Once your issues and objectives are defined, you can then think with confidence about the right digital strategy to adopt. But still, remains the question of the choice of the tool.
While digital transformation implies serious financial investments, there are many strategies that fit all budgets. Rather than a sudden transformation, small, well-organized initiatives will allow you to make this transition gradually and optimize your costs.
Regardless of your new digital strategy, two questions will remain:
- Work with an already existing management platform or create your own tool from A to Z?
- Buy or rent?
Of course, there are pros and cons for each of these options and of course I have an opinion about it. But, we will not go further today. The simple fact that you are aware of the different types of offers may encourage you to properly shop for your management tool and ask the right questions.
The benefits of going digital are incredible: reducing costs, optimizing processes, improving overall vision, reducing wasted time, better understanding of customers, improving decision-making, ....
The costs, although much lower than 20 years ago, are still considerable. However, the only costs that are really to be feared are those that could arise if a digital transformation takes place in a business without it being ready to welcome it.
Do not neglect your upstream preparation and make sure that your SME is ready to make a relevant and thoughtful digital transition.