How digital is your office?

Identify your digital maturity and start your transformation journey

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A guide to a successful digital transformation

With 42% listing legacy infrastructure as a top transformation obstacle, discover how to digitise your business

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Is your office digitalised?

We are in the grips of digital transformation buzz, and businesses everywhere are trying to reach the wealth of riches promised at the end of the journey. Despite this, the reality seems to be that businesses aren’t seeing the return on investment predicted. In 2016 a CIO Survey by Couchbase found that 90 per cent of digital transformation projects had delivered only minor improvements, fallen below expectations, or altogether failed. A year later, IDC predicted that 70 per cent of digital transformation initiatives are still set to fail.

Aspiration and motivation are important assets for businesses looking to transform. However, many are encountering the reality that digital transformation is not instantaneous. So how can businesses make realistic plans and avoid disappointment?

Legacy modernisation

The crux of the challenge is that most businesses are saddled with a cumbersome infrastructure based on legacy systems. This year, research* found that 42 per cent of businesses listed this among the top three obstructions they faced to digital transformation. Organisations today are operating in a competitive, fast-paced landscape which favours agility, and they are under increasing pressure to modernise and migrate core systems to make them more agile.

*Mulesoft, Connectivity Benchmark Report, 2018

Assessing your digital maturity

One of the most important ways to set your business up for successful transformation is to have an accurate understanding of where it is today in terms of digital maturity. This is likely to vary from department to department. Whilst office workers are often familiar with a range of digital processes as part of their daily remit, the finance and HR departments are more typically married to paper-based processes. By assessing digital maturity across the business, it’s possible to understand where to start, and how to prioritise.

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Stages of digital transformation

Digital
Businesses at the start of their journey might range from predominately or substantially manual in terms of status, complying to a demand for digital processes only when required. An example of this kind of business is law firms, which are typically overwhelmed with paperwork, resulting in a huge amount of time spent on administration to manage it. 

Businesses in this category should aim to digitise more processes, a particular focus should be document scanning and capture. The ability to digitally search reams of paperwork and find documents instantly, can save law firms extremely valuable time.

Process automation
Automation is increasingly being introduced into the workplace to remove the mundane, repetitive jobs that take up valuable time. For businesses who have already introduced a significant amount of digitisation, business process automation is the next step. The automation of tasks like mailroom sorting, triaging customer service queries and digital signatures can help businesses streamline workflows and improve efficiencies. 

Optimisation
For businesses at the highest level of maturity, business process optimisation should be the goal. It’s important to consider cohesiveness across the business: transformation should focus on prioritising where processes can be optimised to deliver higher standards of customer experience.

Businesses can’t transform at the flick of a switch, and should set realistic goals when planning transformation. The first step is to fully understand the maturity stage of your business, before deciding where the opportunities and priorities are for the future. Much like the parable of the tortoise and the hare, the key to success is slow but steady.

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