Technology Does Not Make You Digital
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Digital Transformation

Technology Does Not Make You Digital: Here’s Why.


No doubt that in today’s world, technology plays a critical role in an organization’s ability to evolve to stay competitive. But it is not simply turning organizations into digital ones.

We see organizations all around the world rushing to digitize themselves in one way or another. The COVID-19 pandemic has certainly played a catalyst role in forcing organizations to speed up their digital transformation work.

Post-pandemic, will they go back (probably not), stick with the new normal, or strive for better, time will show. I guess the most have learned their lessons. No organization probably asks anymore why they should change if they are successful.

Digital transformation is at the top of organizations’ agendas. But, why are you rushing to become digital?

Are you being swept up or you have a clear strategy?

This should be the top question on the agenda of company executives. In the same way, other questions follow. What is driving us? What is it we want to become?

Understanding digital, being able to define what is digital, should not be taken lightly. From top to bottom, everybody should be able to articulate it clearly.

An organization may get swept up in rushing for digitization for many common reasons: to survive, to stay competitive, to stay relevant, to innovate, etc. None is inherently incorrect. But the rush generally leads to pouring technology into an organization.

Kicking off large-scale cloud migration projects for cost reduction purposes, and depicting them as digital transformation. Sounds familiar? But is this really what digital is all about?

Adopting technology is not digital.

Do not deceive yourself with the buzz words flying around which ultimately relate to computer technologies. Well, if it were that, then why would digital transformation be a hot topic in the first place?

We’ve been using computer technologies for decades-long. Highlighting technology achievements is nowhere close to achieving the transformation.

Nonetheless, state-of-the-art technologies and methodologies (Cloud, Agile, DevOps, Design Thinking, etc.) will certainly put you on the right track, and aid you in your journey.

Enterprisers define digital transformation as the integration of technology into all areas of a business. It fundamentally changes how you operate and deliver value to customers.

Blindly adopting modern technologies does not help you achieve a sound transformation. By the same token, it is of small help if you gear your transformation journey towards reducing friction, increasing productivity, or profitability other than customer experience that turns you into a digital organization.

Put your customer first!

Being digital does not start with replacing your legacy systems, and moving into the cloud. It starts with the central theme of your organization, guess what? Your customer!

Being digital is about putting customers at the heart of everything. New generations are born into digital. The only way to keep them happy is when your services are online, automated, intelligent, real-time, offer wonderful UI/UX, and provides instant feedback. This is what matters. And how you do that?

Design your organization for the digital economy.

In today’s world, companies are forced to reimagine their value propositions for the digital economy. If you do not do it, someone else will. That simple. Reimagining is not an act of dreaming. Though you can. Unless you design your company to compete in this economy.

The design takes into account both sides of the coin. On one hand, you put the focus on digitization that enhances your operational excellence resulting in a build-up of data that has the potential of fundamentally changing your organization.

On the other hand, digital enhances your customer value proposition through experimentation, fail-fast mentality, reusability, shared customer insights, and many more.

Authors of this prominent book “Designed For Digital” highlight that you cannot pursue one in favor of another. The former is a prerequisite to the latter which enhances and accelerates innovation. Company agenda with more focus on digital and less focus on digitization will accrue inevitable technical debt (see Intel’s example).

Digital design is not an easy thing to achieve overnight. The journey is full of challenges and hard work and you will almost certainly be confronted by those that will doubt the ultimate benefits you will get. In fact, you may start doubting it yourself. Digital enterprise design is a topic on its own. Interested to know more about it? Check the link below.

[ Digital Business Design: Key To Success In Digital Economy ]

Adil Gurbanov
Adil is a managing technology consultant at Digital & Emerging Tech of EY Technology Consulting in Amsterdam. Well-versed in the cloud and emerging tech in general, he has designed and led the development of various strategic cloud-based SaaS solutions and worked extensively on large-scale transformation engagements with top-tier organizations.

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