This blog post was written by: Khalid Hafid, CEO onitnow
Let me start with the elephant in the room, being the bad news. 70% of digital transformation projects fail, according to Boston Consulting Group. Learning from this study is just like pulling a stuck plaster from your skin with a quick movement, it is painful but best to take the pain in one go.
Now that we know that the chance of success is shockingly small, we better start looking into initiatives that will increase our chances for success by leaps and bounds. First, we need to understand what factors lead to the failure and how to handle them.
5 common reasons for failure
There are several factors that contribute to the failure of a digital transformation initiative at a company. Here are five common reasons, along with tips to avoid them:
Lack of clear vision and strategy
Without a clear vision and plan for the transformation, it can be difficult for an organization to align its efforts and resources and execute effectively. Use an implementation plan to manage and track the digital transition and ensure that the organization’s goals are met.
Digital transformations often require significant investments in technology, people, and processes. If an organization does not allocate sufficient resources to the initiative, it may struggle to make progress. Therefore, it is wise that each year, when assigning budgets, to take into account the fact that part of the budget will have to be invested in these resources. And keep in mind that the transformation is not settled in one year and therefore structural budget must be available. Invest in the right technology to ensure employees have the right tools to do their jobs efficiently and effectively.
Poor communication and collaboration = digital transformations fail
Digital transformations often involve changes to how work is done, and it is important that all stakeholders are involved and informed throughout the process. Poor communication and collaboration can lead to misunderstandings, confusion, and resistance to change. It is important to clearly communicate the goals and expectations of the digital transition, both internally and externally. This can be done through regular meetings, presentations and updates.
Insufficient focus on people and culture
Digital transformations often require changes to the skills, roles, and responsibilities of employees. If an organization does not adequately address the impact on its people and culture, it may struggle to achieve the desired outcomes. Digital transformations often involve changes to established processes and ways of working, and it is important to manage and address any resistance to change that may arise. Offer education and training so employees can acquire the skills they need to work efficiently with the new technologies. Another way to get all employees on board for the transformation is to encourage collaboration between departments and employees. This can be achieved by organizing team-building activities and encouraging collaboration between departments.
Digital transformations can be complex, involving multiple technology solutions, vendors, and partners. If an organization does not have the necessary expertise or systems in place to manage this complexity, it may struggle to make progress. Ensure that all departments within the organization are involved in the digital transition. This can be achieved by setting up a special working group or committee.
It is important for organizations to carefully plan and execute their efforts to maximize their chances of success.
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