Most businesses were already moving toward the implementation of various digital technologies, but the pandemic accelerated these processes tremendously. The sudden and necessary shift to an almost entirely online work environment forced companies to condense digital transformation projects that could have taken several months, if not years, into just a couple of weeks. 

Naturally, such a ubiquitous push toward digitization cannot be sustained for long, and reports have started to pick up a noticeable slowdown in digital transformation. With experts trying to glean valuable insights from the situation, businesses are wondering about the potential impact on their operations.

First things first, what is digital transformation? The essence of this broad term is bringing added benefits to the company through the adoption of digital technologies. The changes could range from small and relatively non-disruptive to company-wide replacement of existing technology systems with newer and more refined ones. 

The desired outcomes include improving productivity, boosting efficiency, optimizing operations, and, ultimately, increasing profits. While these benefits are indeed enticing, evidence suggests that the vast majority of businesses are failing to attain their digital transformation goals.  

Lessons Learned

It is becoming apparent that no matter the size of the business, simply pouring funds, time, and effort into digital transformations is not enough to guarantee success.

Companies rushing to catch up to their competitors and move into the digital age are facing significant pitfalls. To avoid failure, businesses should start by looking inward to identify the areas where the implementation of digital technologies can bring the biggest ROI.

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Consulting with a professional accounting firm such as accountants east London could prove to be invaluable. The experts can pinpoint key areas that need to be optimized or that can be future-proofed through digital transformation. They can also help companies rein in their spending on technologies that might not be required or are likely to cause unwanted disruptions. 

Don’t Fall While Trying To Run Forward

Blindly following trends or hastily implementing the latest management process may not only fail to produce the expected results but actually hurt the company and its position in the market. Indeed, you need to carry out your digital transformation initiatives in a way that is adjusted to the business’s unique circumstances and improves employee engagement.

For example, many companies are experiencing issues with their legacy systems acting as barriers or inhibiting the adoption of cloud-based solutions and technologies.

Addressing such deeply-rooted internal factors beforehand could make the difference between succeeding or having to invest even more funds in the future to consolidate the systems.

Digital technology is not a universal cure, and recent reports have made that fact rather obvious. Any existing or underlying internal problems that fall outside of its scope will continue to plague the company if left unattended. 

Shifting Mindsets

At the core of any business are the people working there. With the jump into the digital age, a change in the mindset of both managers and employees is also necessary. After all, a company cannot reinvent the way it operates without taking its people along.

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Make sure that there are sufficient educational opportunities and training courses for the new tools or systems. Explaining the need for the sudden and potentially foundational changes could also work wonders as most people are instinctively resistant to any changes in their environment. 

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Focus On Results

Businesses should have a clear idea about the specific areas of focus and what they are trying to achieve. Some may want to become more agile in order to pivot faster and adjust projects more efficiently, drive down current costs by streamlining processes, eliminate internal data silos, or boost security. A lack of concrete goals could easily cause the entire digital transformation process to fail.

Keep in mind that while the intended results may be slow to appear, progress should be regularly measured with the appropriate leading indicators (number of customers, transactions, etc.). The overall success of the initiative could then be determined based on the realized revenue and net profits. 

The slowdown in digital transformations will give businesses more time to prepare without fearing that they will fall behind their competitors. Instead, companies can begin their digital transformation journeys after experts’ input and reconciling the opposing priorities of the current needs versus the future ones.