Successful transformations are easier waterfalled than done, but all have a few things in common.
Unless you’ve been in a cave, you’ll be very aware of the period of unprecedented digital acceleration of the last few years. Businesses globally have had to respond to rapidly shifting market and consumer dynamics, with varying success. Other than the obvious global pandemic, some of the factors influencing this change in focus are:
- The widespread adoption of cloud computing which has made it easier and more cost effective to leverage powerful tools.
- Artificial intelligence and Machine Learning have enabled us to automate, gain insights and improve decision making.
- The proliferation of Internet of Things (IoT) has enabled businesses to understand consumer behaviour through a number of new and interesting channels.
- Blockchain technology has allowed for secure and decentralized data management.
- Robust security measures have received investment from businesses as increasing reliance on technology introduces cybersecurity
- Growing consumer expectations have resulted in investment in technologies that allow for hyper-personalization and seamless experiences.
If you’re a digital professional then none of this will be news, and your focus would’ve been influenced by one or more of these factors over the last few years.
But digital transformation is easier waterfalled than done. Whether you’ve encountered legacy infrastructure, internal resistance to change, budgetary constraints, privacy concerns, or obstructive organizational silos, you’ll know that these initiatives require a strategic approach that reaches into most areas of the business. Digital professionals are becoming frustrated with their limited-scope, disconnected tools and poor visibility of the end-to-end customer experience.
These are the 5 trends that are guiding digital transformation in businesses with successful implementations:
Transformation requires a strategic approach that prioritizes cultural (one that values innovation and experimentation) and organizational changes, talent acquisition and development, and investment – and these all require strong leadership. Leaders can influence transformation in the following ways:
- Articulating a clear vision that aligns with business strategy and goals.
- Creating a culture of innovation and fostering this culture by encouraging risk and experimentation.
- Driving change and breaking down organizational silos that add friction to the transformation efforts.
- Building the right team by hiring a team with the necessary digital skills, and fostering a culture that attracts this talent.
- Measuring success by establishing the appropriate metrics and KPIs and then adjusting strategy accordingly.
Overall, leadership is critical to ensuring efforts are successful and drive long-term value.
2. Data-driven decision making
Businesses need to effectively collect, analyze, and act on data insights to be better positioned for success. Leaders need to create a culture that values data-driven decision making and invest in the tools and infrastructure necessary to support it. There are a few reasons data-driven decision making is important:
- Better accuracy of customer behavior data allows for better decisions, rather than gut feel or intuition.
- Better insights into customer behavior and other factors helps businesses to identify new opportunities and stay ahead of the competition.
- Greater efficiency by leveraging data and automating processes, thereby improving overall performance.
- Speed of decision making and ability to respond are possible due to real-time insights into customers and the market.
- Improved customer experiences by leveraging data in real time and providing more personalized experiences and meeting needs.
Informed decisions based upon objective data rather than guesswork is a competitive advantage.
3. Agile approaches
Agile methodologies, which emphasize flexibility, collaboration and iterative development, have emerged as a popular approach for digital transformation, enabling businesses to quickly iterate and respond to changing market conditions. Here are some of the key ways that agile approaches can influence transformation efforts:
- Faster time-to-market can be achieved when delivering products and services to the market.
- Agile methodology accommodates changes and creates greater flexibility and ability to respond to changing conditions.
- Increased collaboration between cross functional teams improves communication, aligns goals, and fosters teamwork.
- Agile approaches encourage continuous improvement by injecting feedback from customers and stakeholders, ensuring the final product meets customer needs.
Overall, agility helps businesses respond to changing customer needs and market conditions, while mitigating risk.
Transformation demands collaboration that fosters cross-functional teamwork across the business. This ensures goal achievement and drives long-term value for the business. Here are some ways that collaboration can influence the success of transformation efforts:
- Improved communication allows for sharing insights and feedback, improving decision making and ultimate outcomes.
- Better innovation because teams that work together bring diverse perspectives and skill sets to the table.
- Greater efficiency due to streamlined processes, reduction in duplication, reduced conflict, and better overall alignment.
- Collaboration allows for better customer experiences due to a better understanding of needs and preferences, which inform products and services.
Collaboration that promotes alignment and innovation improves the customers’ journeys with the brand and drives long-term business value.
By placing the customer at the centre of the business, you prioritize the needs and preferences of the customer above all else. Here are some of the key ways that customer-centricity can influence the success of digital acceleration efforts:
- Improved customer experiences are achieved by leveraging digital technologies and creating personalized and frictionless experiences.
- Increased customer loyalty is a result of the focus on customer-centricity, because strong relationships with customers are built when their needs are prioritized.
- Better insights are revealed through analyzing real-time customer data and feedback collection, enabling better decision making and improved offerings.
- Customer centricity delivers a competitive advantage as digital technologies create personalized experiences in the marketplace. This improves acquisition, retention and market share.
- Customer-centric businesses that deliver positive experiences and build strong relationships can drive improved revenue over time.
According to a Forrester report, ‘The Business Impact Of Digital Experience Technology Is Profitable Growth’, businesses that prioritize digital experience technology see significant benefits, such as improved customer experience, increased customer loyalty, improved operational efficiency, and revenue growth*.
Digital leaders can struggle because they continue to use disconnected tools for different jobs. These tools can span UX, VoC, CRM and web analytics, but they never benefit from an end-to-end view of actual customer journeys or behavior, and can certainly never do anything to optimize the journeys.
At inQuba, we’ve seen that prioritizing the digital experience results in leading businesses becoming customer journey-centric. The actual customer journey is placed at the centre of the business, providing the end-to-end view that’s needed. This is the killer app that stitches it all together, empowering businesses to answer questions like:
- What do our customers’ real journeys look like?
- Where are they getting stuck?
- Where are they experiencing value?
- What is the sentiment?
- How can we help each segment with context?
Coming up: look out for our next post in this series where we’ll be looking at the reasons to start measuring and managing channel profitability. This is the game changer for LOB heads who need a framework for understanding the relationships between channels and profitability, and who don’t want to miss opportunities or allocate resources poorly.
About inQuba Journey Management
Customer Journey Management is the laser technology of CX. Lasers offer targeting precision for specific use cases, and users have granular control. Similarly, managing customer journeys allows you to focus on the specific – cohorts, behaviors and use cases. Every systematic action is for someone, not everyone.
While CX results are flattening, inQuba Journey Management, which includes Journey Analytics and Journey Orchestration, is helping businesses to visualize actual journeys, understand their emotion, dynamically clear their paths, nudge them in the right direction and double customer conversion.
We’d love to understand your business challenges better, and discuss how Journey Management can transform your customers’ experiences and business growth.