As with most questions in the world of technology, there is rarely a simple answer… One I want to dive into though is the impact of digital transformation on your operations and your business as a whole.
We are all familiar with the increased use of technology and apps going on all around us and with it an increased reliance on that technology. Generally speaking though, for most people, this is mainly applicable to their personal and social lives. As much as our organisations rely on databases, online portals, and computer systems to collect and store data, there are still many issues faced by businesses in communicating information and even accessing it as we do with our social data and information.
Microsoft Office is one of the most widely utilised software packages in the world, in almost any office you will find mountains of documents in Microsoft Word, countless Excel spreadsheets in multiple formats, and if you’re in real need of an update you might even find some Access databases! In many businesses, these are described as ‘essential’ yet they cannot be edited by everyone at once, there is an increased chance of human error and if documents are stored on company networks, they can be difficult to access remotely.
Many businesses have operated this way for years and overlook the opportunity to improve processes by automating tasks and optimising workflows. Efficiency and innovation are key to performing against the competition, but most businesses focus on the wrong aspects when trying to reduce their costs or increase their profits. Introducing digital technology to your business has lots of benefits that will have positive effects on every level of your organisation.
- Reduce Process Cycle Time – The quicker you can make decisions and do your job, the quicker you can make money and grow your business. Using digital technology decision making and data collection is highly automated.
- Improved Management Strategy – Data is a valuable asset that many businesses underestimate and do not invest in properly. Centralising data and streamlining reporting improves data delivery and management strategy.
- Intuitive Systems – Technology needs to be easy to navigate and easy to use. Digital transformation creates the opportunity to incorporate visual and logical aspects to your own system, making it easier to understand.
- Integration & Development Opportunities – Everything is going digital from project management to finances, but this doesn’t have to mean using multiple systems as applications like Xero allow integration for ease of use.
- Accessibility for Key Users – Tackling one of life’s newest challenges, working from anywhere, integrating digital technology gives key users the ability to access systems and metrics from their phones wherever they are.
- Data Compliance – Data itself needs to be protected properly to minimise breaches or misuse of data under GDPR compliance. This is a crucial piece of information management that can be automated too.
- Security & Traceability – Security is of the utmost importance when digitizing operations and storing data online. All system transactions are recorded to easily trace and resolve issues quickly.
The advantages of digital transformation are felt by all departments and make interacting and sharing information easier. Digitization also encourages businesses to review processes and analyze them, too many businesses do not change processes because “we’ve always done it this way” – Which isn’t a good reason unless you’re talking about something traditional. With technology advancing at its current rate there are constantly new opportunities to increase efficiency by digitally advance your business.
I’ve tried to highlight that digital transformation acts as a gateway to understanding the working parts of your business and how every transaction affects other departments. In many cases, there are surprising finds within legacy processes that have remained unchanged for years. This leads to frustration amongst the team, usually agreeing on the parts of the process that need improvement.
Preparing to go digital offers team-building opportunities to incorporate all of the above points and allows all departments to put their cards on the table. Empowering all team members to influence the system engages them directly and gets them to think about their role from different angles, including how their role or department actually fits into the big picture.
The singular biggest thing that will impact your business is data! Digital systems provide the opportunity to collect many types of data from many sources and create reports and dashboards summarising this information. Many of those burning operational and financial questions can be answered quickly by having access to lots of information and the right tools to analyze it. The whole point is to align people and processes with accurate insights. Systems should pull businesses together and push them forward as one.
Digital transformation can revolutionize the way you do business and encompassing all the benefits I have covered in this article combine to create the biggest advantage, competitive advantage. Adding value to customer interactions and sharing information with them seamlessly is an attractive selling point, and once again saves your business time on creating manual reports!
I hope this had shed some light on why digitizing your operations is both important and valuable. Businesses are constantly progressing and striving to do better and you need to be in it to win it. To discuss opportunities to transform your business simply complete our contact form at the bottom of the page or contact us directly.