Before you take on a Digital Transformation project, there are a few things I’d recommend that you consider before undergoing a significant shift. Based on my experience, too few companies slow down long enough to do this, but it will save you time and money in the long run. I’m discussing performing a self-assessment of your Organization’s capabilities and readiness for change by completing a Digital Transformation Readiness assessment. This will help you understand how ready your culture is for this change. The answers will give you a sense of what exactly Digital Transformation means for your Organization. In addition, they will provide you with an understanding of how easy or difficult such a change may become.
The Digital Transformation Readiness kit should include the following:
1. Technical Debt Assessment
This assessment addresses the technology landscape and the support infrastructure.
- How much technical crap do you have to work through to make a real Digital change happen?
- What processes support the current technology, and will they change with a Digital Transformation project?
- How many technologies are you planning to replace, and how dependent are you on those technologies (think beyond what you specifically aim to change)?
- How old are those technologies, and are they required elsewhere in your organization?
2. Change Management Assessment/Organizational Debt
This assessment focuses on the people and the change management needs of your company culture.
- How ready are your end-users?
- Are your stakeholders invested and engaged?
- How invested are people in the success of the transformation effort?
- How much “change fatigue” is your end-users and executive Sponsors demonstrating?
- Does your culture allow change, and what is your adoption strategy (enablement) beyond launch?
- Do you potentially have an Organizational infrastructure that prevents change or requires “total buy-in” even to consider a change?
3. Process Assessment
This assessment focuses on the processes impacted by the Digital Transformation effort.
- What is your current business process?
- Do your processes need updating?
- Is your current structural Organization represented in these processes, and will you consider changing the structure to support the Digital Transformation effort?
- Will a digital transformation change the way you do work?
- How open are you to evolving your current processes?
- Have you considered how you will support the enablement of Digital Transformation once you’ve initially rolled it out?
References and Resources
For more on Digital Transformation Preparation, we recommend this article.
Finally, the last consideration is determining whether you aim for Digital Transformation or whether you are just purchasing software. Too many companies claim to be undergoing a Digital Transformation effort but have not considered what that means. If you want software, buy software but don’t call it a Digital Transformation effort. You are only swapping out software.
- Digital Transformation is a significant shift that requires careful consideration before undertaking.
- To prepare for such a change, perform a self-assessment of the organization’s capabilities and readiness for change through a Digital Transformation Readiness assessment.
- This assessment should cover technical debt, change management, and process assessment.
- The results will help understand the technology landscape, support infrastructure, people’s readiness for change, stakeholder engagement, and the impact on processes.
Originally Posted November 23, 2018