Why COVID-19 is the Catalyst to Fast Track Digital Transformation Initiatives
Fast tracking digital transformation has been a pressing need across industries, for many years now. However, only a few brands are confident of their digital transformation initiatives and a majority of organisations are still struggling to get it right.
Forrester in its 'Sorry State of Digital Transformation report' had concluded that only 21% companies think they've already completed digital transformation.
More so, the COVID-19 Pandemic calls for an imminent need to fast-track digital transformation for brands. So, how can this situation open new gates for facilitating renewed thrust for CX & digital transformation? How is it placing organizations in a 'now or never' juncture?
The Need: COVID-19 impact
The outbreak has forced the entire world to recalibrate and readjust their way of living and working, thereby inducing a new normal with restricted movement and physical transactions. This necessitates the increased use and dependence on digital tools, devices and platforms, as almost every aspect of day-to-day needs for end consumers must be catered digitally.
This is an incredibly tough time for digital laggards & the time has come for businesses to adopt the digital platforms - to be digital-ready and digital-first & reshape their existing business models in this direction.
With COVID-19, the digital laggards will now face the survival challenge and hence it will become imperative for them to at least kick start, if not fast track, their digital transformation journey.
The Adaptation: Concerted steps towards New Normal
Work from home enablement has now become the new norm for most organizations.
Organizations lacking in digital front have been facing increasing challenges and stiff competition overtime from industry leaders who excel in their digital offerings. With COVID-19, digital laggards will now face the survival challenge and hence it will become imperative for them to at least kick start, if not fast track, their digital transformation journey.
All this would see the rise of modern disruptive technologies such as artificial intelligence, intelligent automation, modern digital workplace, cloud adoption, enhanced communications & CX, along with managed services.
Digital transformation will be one of the most obvious outcome of COVID-19 induced demands and rethinking!
The on-ground events industry has also been hit hard. Google has set an example as to how digital alternatives can turn turbulence into opportunity with Google strategically transforming their in-person live Google Cloud-20 conference into a digital event which shall take place soon; as and when the enormous severity of coronavirus subsides. Sitecore's Global Virtual SUGCON 2020 is a gleaning example by Sitecore to leverage modern digital tools and platforms to conduct live events virtually. Whereas, world's leading research and advisory giant Gartner conducts regular webinars with most of its live events planned in and post September 2020.
Stats that talk volumes!
The need to fast-track digital transformation is not just about external demands or to stay relevant and deliver but is still about a less costly, much simpler, highly productive and ROI intensive initiative.
In a recent IDC survey in China 32 CXOs in 10 industries were asked about their opinions on the value of IT and digital transformation in the fight against the outbreak.
Wide recognition of the value of digital transformation and IT among all employees, is among the top three positive impacts cited, as found in the survey.
Sandy Shen, Senior Director at Gartner has rightly remarked, "The value of digital channels, products and operations is immediately obvious to companies everywhere right now. This is a wake-up call for organizations that have placed too much focus on daily operational needs at the expense of investing in digital business & long-term resilience."
Even a March 2020 study by J.D. Power found out that 31% of global consumers have opened their most recent banking account using digital channels such online, mobile apps, phone or email - compared to 22% in 2019.
The truth about digital transformation was known to most of us and even before COVID-19 hit, 92% of companies thought their business models would need to change given digitization.
Digital transformation is important, but it is more important to be quick, timely and relevant!
The payoff will go to those who move boldly
- McKinsey Digital Global Survey
It was quite evident that many companies need to accelerate their digital transformation initiatives. This will involve moving from active experimentation to active scale-up, backed by regular testing and continuous improvements.
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