Businesses need to digitize. They’re growing at a rapid pace as more consumers swarm the internet to make the best purchases.
The internet has a major role to play in the shift towards digitization of business processes. And here’s how:
Assume that you need to buy a new television. You go to your nearest electronic store and buy one with a 5% discount. A few days later you find out that you could’ve bought the same television for a 10% discount from another store, and even made a 5% cashback on the same tv, from the same store’s online portal or mobile application.
It’s obvious that the second store might’ve missed out on a few customers but their overall sales will be much higher than the first store. Moreover, people who bought from the second store, and even those who didn’t but came to know later about their amazing deals on offer will definitely come back for future buys.
You’ve probably realized by now that digitalization of business is important. From a business owner’s perspective, you get a bigger audience. From a customer’s perspective, better deals. And from the market’s perspective, the discovery of small and medium-sized businesses.
Important Digitization Stats You Should Know About
As an entrepreneur and business enthusiast, your goal will always be to better your existing business processes, come up with new business models, and create exciting opportunities.
So, what is the impact of digitization on business you ask?
You’re assured of saving time to develop new products and services, making informed management decisions, and spreading your organization’s reach to all sections of the market. Not to forget, your growth and expansion will disrupt archaic business strategies.
Basically, developing a digital strategy for business processes means leveraging technology to accelerate performance.
Here are a few facts and figures to highlight the need for digital automation and what exactly it can offer once adopted.
- Almost 87% of businesses agree that digitization increases competitive opportunities
- 96% of businesses see digitization as important and critical
- 88% of organizations admit that they are in the process of undergoing digital transformations
- 85% of organizations feel that they have a timeframe of two years to plan and execute a digitization process, failing which they’ll either suffer financial losses or be overtaken by their competitors
- 32% of organizations report that a digital strategy plan has helped them to increase their operational efficiency
- At least 50% of businesses report that they do not have a stellar digitalization strategy
- 39% of businesses say that digital transformation has helped them accelerate the progress of real-time transactions
- 25% give credit to digital transformation for speeding up product development cycles
- At least 28% agree that digital innovation has helped them to acquire new customers
- 25% of an organization’s executive feel that a digitalization strategy will improve customer experience
- On the other hand, 45% of executives expect an increase in revenues to be one of the benefits of digitalization
- As much as 31% of businesses accept that they invest at least 15% of their revenues in digitization and new technologies across all sectors of their business
- 44% of business executives feel that understanding all business processes and analyzing how digital transformations can positively impact them are the missing skills in an organization
- 71% of businesses say that they’re able to tempt new and experienced talent as a result of developing a digital business strategy
- Organizations and businesses that have already gone through the digital transformation phase report that their revenues are up by 30%. Moreover, customer engagement, employee morale, market share, and web and mobile engagement have also heightened by 37%, 37%, 41%, and 32% respectively
- The market for digital transformation is projected to hit at least $360 Billion USD by the year 2020 with a 19.6% growth rate compounded annually
- 87% of businesses and organizations anticipate digitization to have positive consequences on employee productivity and experiences
Why Should You Digitize Your Business?
The numbers given above must’ve impressed you. And you must’ve probably guessed by now that digitization is a major requirement of your business’ growth.
That’s well and good. But, what are your objectives?
The sole motive behind the introduction of something new for any process is improvement. – Click To Tweet
What do you want to improve?
If you didn’t know already, digitization is not something new. It has been going on for years. Basically, physical data undergoes a digital transformation to be accessed, stored, secured, and manipulated.
Accordingly, the data is used to cause a digital disruption while also bringing in profits and accelerating a business towards growth.
Here’s a little more on what are the underlying factors that push businesses to opt for a digital makeover.
- Ready When They Are
The motive behind digitization is primarily to meet the growing demands of customer expectations. Now, one might say that digitizing existing systems could be the step forward.
However, that’s not the case. An organization will have to reinvent their entire business model while focusing on the vulnerabilities and adaptability. Simply put, you must know if your business is ready to accept digitization and also be clear about the prospects.
- Keeping Up With Tech
Access to the internet has become a right for billions on this planet. It’s rather cheap nowadays and available across multiple platform and devices so that people can be webbed together through technology.
The introduction of low-cost, smart devices and various other technologies such as cloud computing compel businesses to come aboard the digital bandwagon and move on from obsolete technologies.
- Tech-Dependent Consumers
Just compare the consumers from back in the days and today. They’re so much apart in terms of how the latter have become reliant on technology.
The living generation and those in the future will be fully-adapted to technology in a few years from now. They’ll use it share private data, stay connected, and tell one another about anything amazing online. With so much potential and promise in technology, the push for digitization has never been greater.
- Return On Investment
A lot of investment is poured into digitization for businesses. Those who get a head-start are often rewarded with exciting rewards and evaluations.
Smart techniques to perform better and limit errors are what consumers crave. If your business develops a digital strategy framework in order to make the lives of consumers better, the returns will definitely be worthy.
- Survival Of The Fittest
Developing a digital strategy will become a necessity for your business. And here why—survival.
The needs of consumers will be erratic, and for a business, it means to be able to adapt and transform quickly with changing demands. Of course, the returns might not be as you expect by following digital trends.
Some might profit immediately while others might have to wait longer. But, whatever the case, your business will have to digitize sooner or later in order to grow and survive.
- Enabling Security
Data is money for every firm and individual. For a business, the more, the better. But no business wants their own data shared, stolen, and sold.
Businesses running on obsolete technologies with weak security systems often become easy prey for hackers. The need for digital security becomes important; one that cannot be compromised.
Security will be key in defining the success of an organization in the coming years. The weaker your business, the weaker will be your appeal.
Digital Transformation Tips You Should Follow
Thanks to giants like Google and Amazon, customers expect all businesses to match their responsiveness, flexibility, and efficiency.
The process of digitization might overwhelm businesses built on older systems and technologies. This might result in delaying or totally opting out of digitization, thus creating opportunities for digitization-ready businesses to swoop in and steal the show.
But digitization and overhauling of systems don’t have to be complicated. The entire process can be broken down into the following:
- Know What Your Customers Have To Say
The overall success of your business will depend on how satisfied you keep your customers. If you have plenty of customers and keep adding more every now and then, whilst keeping them happy then your sales and revenues will be high.
Another benefit of adding more customers means that you’ll be getting plenty of feedback. This feedback can then be used to improve your products and services.
There are plenty of tools available today that can help you assess customer relationships with your firm. For instance, you can use the Net Promoter Score that reflects customer loyalty with respect to revenue.
Such metrics are important and require investment in the form of human management for day-to-day monitoring and technical resources.
- Manage Interactions With CRM
You’ll also have to install a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system so that you maintain communication between your firm and existing/potential clients.
Think of the system as a tool that manages communication within the team, but more importantly, communication with customers.
You get complete details of your clients with a CRM system. It can also be used to relay information to operation HQ about inventories and production demands.
What’s more, the customer support team in your firm can facilitate effective communication with customers. Your sales and marketing teams can also use CRM to exchange information between them about the pipeline and marketing campaigns.
An important point to note about CRM systems is that you should integrate one after consulting a digital strategist who has worked with high-quality CRM systems in the past. The reason being, once you integrate a particular CRM system, it’ll be really difficult to switch to another.
- Investing In Business Intelligence
As mentioned previously, data is important for every firm. And how you manage it for business development is even more crucial.
You must be able to store data, generate data from day-to-day transactions, recognize patterns, come up with unique strategies, and of course structure it methodically so that you can always revisit.
You could store data on spreadsheets but that’ll use up too much human labour and time. Not to forget, manual errors and loss of data. This is where Business Intelligence systems can be integrated.
They run on special algorithms that recognise, gather, manipulate data to draw conclusions in order to make informed business decisions. This system must be available on all operational sectors of your firm so that information is passed on quickly
What’s more, they represent real-time data in easy-to-read and understand visual formats. Moreover, they’re structured and backed-up for safekeeping.
- Improve The Team
There are two ways in which you can go about digitization. The first way is by hiring digital consulting firms. The other way is by building your own in-house team.
Since digitization is a priority for many businesses and firms all over the world, there will probably be any city without a digital strategy company.
So, you might have a task at hand to build an in-house experienced team with superb digitization skills, because they’re hired by digital strategy firms.
If you’re building one, look for talent that can mobilize resources and digitize processes quickly. However, in the hiring department, you’d want to hire managers first who will lead different teams.
Managers who can make a commitment for a long time and have stellar reputations. Your team must be well-versed in the latest technological advancements and digital trends so that they’re capable of building modular systems that have tons of flexibility, no errors, and scope to scale.
- Sharing Within The Organization
What is digital strategy if no communication and sharing of resources takes place within a business? Nothing, it’s nothing—an unsuccessful and doomed-to-fail strategy.
You should save a chunk of your budget for Knowledge Management Systems (KMS) that’ll pool together all the resources and knowledge your firm possesses. When in place, KMS can be utilised to build communication between all team members.
What’s more, newbies joining your business can also check in immediately to get up to speed. Any roadblocks faced on the road to digitization can be shared and solved together at a much faster pace.
You might feel that the digitization process is complicated and time-consuming. Well, it might consume time and you might have to set aside some of your funds for the transformation, but the possibilities and benefits are endless.
To quote George Westerman from MIT Sloan, “when digital transformation is done right, it’s like a caterpillar turning into a butterfly, but when done wrong, all you have is a really fast caterpillar.” –Click To Tweet