With 2020 thankfully fading away in the rear-view mirror, people and organizations are thinking of the future once again. With circumstances putting a lot of things on hold, last year wasn’t a time of aspiration – many organizations were more concerned with just surviving than necessarily thriving.
But it’s a new year and a fresh start. And in 2021, it’s vital that businesses get their digital transformation initiatives back on track – assuming they have them in the first place. I’ll explain here just why digital transformation is so important now, even more so than ever.
Digital transformation = technological evolution
In essence, digital transformation means changing the way you do things to make the most of contemporary technological advancements. It’s transforming your organization and your processes via technology in order to stay as competitive as possible. To put it in Darwinian terms: it’s how businesses evolve to survive.
This idea of “evolution” is key to truly understanding digital transformation. It’s not a one-off change project, or, at least, it’s not only that. Truly successful organizations recognize that digital transformation must be open-ended and continual, an ongoing self-optimization that ensures a business is at the top of its game and is harnessing every advantage available.
It’s not just moving to the cloud
Although adopting cloud-based technologies has become synonymous with digital transformation, to equate the two is an oversimplification and a mistake. The cloud is a means to an end—not an end in itself. It enables digital transformation, by offering newer, smarter, more connected tools, services and processes. Think of one as the place you want to get to, and the other as a way you can get there.
Getting hung up on the cloud—especially a one-off change project that gets your business “into the cloud”—is a distraction from the full potential of digital transformation. It’s better to take a more expansive view of the possibilities. Blue-sky thinking, if you’ll excuse the pun.
Start imagining what’s possible
Think about what digital transformation might mean in terms of your organization. Where could technology play a part in improving the way the business works? Is it the customer experience, or the internal processes used for employees to do their jobs? What could be “transformed digitally”, and how?
Maybe some of your business processes involve large amounts of manual effort from your employees. They could be paper-based processes but they might also just be tied up in clunky, old digital systems that have seen better days. Whatever’s the case, you’ve just found some prime candidates to be transformed and evolved.
Mapping and managing your business processes is the best way to discover what works, what doesn’t, what’s performing well, and what could be given an overhaul. You have to understand what you’re dealing with before you can decide what’s ripe for digital transformation – and exactly what the change should be.
The importance of digital transformation today
I don’t need to tell you that it’s never been more vital for a business to be competitive than it is right now. And today, no organization wants to miss an opportunity to improve operations and get the edge—especially a cost-effective “quick win” that doesn’t involve massive, drawn-out, expensive change projects. “Doing more with less” is a key imperative for many today. Harnessing the right technology in the right way allows you to do that.
What’s more, during the COVID-19 pandemic, countless organizations became aware of how out-of-date their business processes were, and how unsuitable they were for remote working and today’s connected world. For many, digital transformation stopped being a nice idea for someday in the future and became a very real priority.
With all that in mind, you can see why an organization’s commitment—and approach—to digital transformation might be absolutely pivotal to its future success.
The value of process automation
As we established earlier, digital transformation doesn’t necessarily mean huge, sweeping, disruptive change projects like “getting your business into the cloud” (whatever that means) but instead it’s a matter of evolving crucial business processes via technology.
Organizations today want to make this happen fast, so they don’t lag behind competitors, and they’re operating as efficiently as possible. And, given the tough economic climate, it’s even more vital that digital transformation be as cost-effective as possible. In fact, many businesses are now prioritizing technologies that tick those boxes.
Create solutions that matter
Organizations everywhere are choosing to automate business processes via workflows. Part of the low/no-code boom, workflow automation allows non-tech-specialists to quickly and easily create the technology solutions their organization needs with relatively little disruption or major investment in software development.
Found a bad process that’s dragging your business down? Just build a better one to replace it. It’s an approach to digital transformation that’s focused on problems, solutions, and results, rather than fixating on individual technologies or getting caught up on huge change projects.
Because of this, process automation could be exactly the method for digital transformation you’re looking for.
Exploring why digital transformation should be process-first
At Nintex, we believe that process management, automation, and optimization are the key to true digital transformation. We want to help organizations to harness the power of process as effectively as possible for the future of their business.
And, as this article explains, we think there’s never been a better time to do that. So, if you’d like to kickstart digital transformation for yourself, we’re ready when you are.
Want to discuss how you can accelerate digital transformation via process automation? Get in touch with the team at Nintex today.