How to Develop a Digital Transformation Strategy for Your Business

Wednesday, 12 February 2020

Incorporating new technology into your business can be a great opportunity for growth, as well as the cause of many headaches if you have not created a detailed plan beforehand. Any digital transformation strategy should be geared towards addressing a specific need, and choosing the right solution. At EIT Digital, we have just the information you need to begin planning.

Step 1: Create a Roadmap for Your Digital Transformation Strategy

When getting from one place to another, you need to know the way you are going before you start your journey, and that is as true in technology implementation as in any other context. This is why creating a digital transformation roadmap is the best place to begin; find where you want to be and how you will be getting there. However, before you dive headfirst into digitalisation, you should consider collecting and analysing data to help you determine:

  • Where you need to implement technology solutions and their purpose.
  • Whether you will use one solution to solve an isolated issue or if that technology will only be a cog in the machine.
  • Anticipate any possible issues before you implement the technology and begin preparing a strategy to deal with them more efficiently.
  • Whether you will need to collaborate with providers or use sub-services in other sectors. If yes, you will need to collect data to understand their digital intensity. According to the DESI Report 2019, there is a difference over 50% in the number of companies that use digital tools and those that do not, for example, computing or communications are very digitally advanced, whereas construction seems to be impervious to transformation. Getting to know the way they work will help you develop your business.

A great part of digital transformation strategies is to know all the steps your company needs to take and who is the best actor to take them before you start walking towards digitalisation.

Step 2: Rethink Your Business Model

Digital transformation strategies often entail changing the entire business model, which is not something many business owners find appealing, particularly if this means branching out using sub-services or collaborators. Nonetheless, the EU Parliament has made digital transformation one of its priorities, creating programmes to foster its implementation and helping companies change their structure and the way they work to become a part of a thriving ecosystem.

Once you have determined if and how you will change your business model, you will need to test it, whether it is a small or large part of your new structure. Even though technology usually works as expected, contracting sub-services across different digital transformation frameworks might incur in fragmentation. This can be solved by using an open platform where the different actors within the ecosystem can share data.

Step 3: Find the Bigger Picture

Implementing new technology and restructuring your company is merely the beginning, in your digital transformation strategy you should include the continuous development of your business, welcoming the possibility of new directions. After establishing your ecosystem, you might find there is a bigger picture where your solution can become a cog in a different machine, always evolving. This is probably why 76% of companies across countries such as France, Germany or Spain consider digitalisation a priority, according to the 2019 European SME survey.

If step one and two are meant for the present, this one is for the future. European society is becoming more adept at technology, and companies will need to keep up. The solutions you include into your model can lead you across different sectors, if you understand their needs and adapt your solution to fit, all you need to do is keep analysing data and planning ahead.

Discover how to build your strategy with EIT Digital and find out how to choose the best digital transformation projects for your business. Learn about changing your business model through our free online MOOC through Coursera, or go one step further with our on-site masterclass, organised and created in collaboration with the KTH Executive School. Get to your destination with digitalisation strategies!

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