The secret to digital transformation? Let your customers lead


A recent report, The 2016 State of Digital Transformation surveyed over 500 executives around the world to identify key insights and trends impacting companies going through a digital transformation.

It revealed that while 55% of those responsible for digital transformation cite “evolving customer behaviours and preferences” as the primary catalyst for change; it also found the number one challenge (71%) is understanding the behaviour or impact of it on today’s customer.

However, only half (54%) of survey respondents have completely mapped out the customer journey, meaning that there is clearly a disconnect between understanding the customer journey and its impact on digital transformation.

The mistake that many organisations have made is to focus their business transformation efforts on IT and business processes, whereas real change needs to start with people.

>See also: 4 intelligent elements of successful digital transformation

Companies need to learn to see their business from the perspective of their customers; starting with their needs and desires and then working backwards to reach the new digital capabilities to satisfy them.

Today’s customer demands new ways of discovering – experiencing and sharing their views about your products and services so it’s vital that you connect and engage with them via the channels they want and expect.

Even traditional companies (not just tech and startups) must make the shift to a digital-centric, customer-led mindset.

Tractor-maker John Deere, for example, is now building software to help its customers to be more effective in planting and tending crops based on big data.

So reimagine transforming the service you deliver to your customers, making a positive impact on their experience with you and driving their satisfaction and loyalty.

>See also: 5 questions to ask during a digital transformation project

By shifting focus to your customer and their journey, you can begin to align your technical capabilities to directly address your customer’s pains, needs, and desired outcomes.

Companies that are customer-led are listening not only to what their customers want, but finding out why they want it.

This allows everything from the product, to marketing, and support teams not only to better serve them but also to figure out how best to leverage the digital means to do it.

These shifts enable a customer-led mindset that can create hundreds of opportunities to support customer interactions and behaviours to enhance their experience and boost your business relationship.

Forget disruption; with the right tools, digital transformation is an enabler to reimagine your business, providing the opportunity to become more efficient, grow and prosper.

It’s an opportunity for businesses to identify the changes needed, from an informed position, and work out those priorities which will have the biggest impact, putting people and technology at the heart of their organisation for the betterment of all.

>See also: Digital transformation is the new kingmaker

Digital transformation can lead to a reimagining of business operations. The results produce a movement from disparate business units to better aligned operations to customers.

Now, using Advanced as an example, whatever part of the business a customer interacts with, they receive a common experience.

Digitally this means a connected business with systems that speak to each other, delivering a 360 view of customers – the results: customers engaged in a more effective and personalised way.

The good news is that despite digital transformation often seeming like a ticking time bomb, there’s still time for organisations to think customer-first and build strategic plans – encompassing digital content applications and platforms, as well as organisational approaches – built around customer needs, and going way beyond ‘business as usual.’


Sourced by Gordon Wilson, CEO, Advanced

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Nick Ismail

Nick Ismail is a former editor for Information Age (from 2018 to 2022) before moving on to become Global Head of Brand Journalism at HCLTech. He has a particular interest in smart technologies, AI and...

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