Why a digital transformation strategy matters

Digital transformation strategy planning

In the digital age, organisations need to adopt the “out with the old, in with the new, but hold onto the data” mantra. The world is rapidly changing, and technological innovation means growing and improving is a continuous process, rather than a set-and-forget scenario.

Digital transformation means integrating the latest wave of technologies to build new systems, processes, operating models and software – connecting people, business and things. Businesses who can quickly adapt and pivot to new situations will be better placed to take advantage of the future’s opportunities.

So where do you start? In developing your digital transformation strategy or roadmap, the first step is understanding your business goals and learning how to continuously research and evaluate opportunities. From here, you can use data to inform and design solutions, ideate, innovate, execute, optimise and scale. This is one such approach. Macqurie Group, similarly is thoroughly invested in embedding a culture of innovation into their work practices and is seeing the benefits. Hear how, from Torrens University alum Betsy Westcott, Director in Data & Digital Transformation at Macquarie Group.

Pivot to an agile mindset

Today, digital transformation is a top strategic priority for business and IT leaders across all industries. More and more, companies are investing in the services and technology that enable the digital transformation of systems, practices and products. In fact, worldwide spending is set to reach US$2.3 trillion by 2023, according to forecasts by the International Data Corporation (IDC)

All that cash speaks volumes about its potential to not only change the way business is done, but drive better business in a competitive landscape.

“It’s not just about putting in technology in this digital age,” says Drina Ng, Business Development Manager at Metamosaic Australia. “Digital transformation is relevant because it’s about growing business. It’s about surviving in the digital age.”

Gone are the days when market leadership was based solely on having the best products, prices and even people. Now to succeed, businesses must be agile and capture opportunities in ever-changing markets.

As Martha Arifin, Learning Facilitator at Billy Blue College of Design at Torrens University Australia, explains, “Digital transformation is important in industries because it’s a cross-disciplinary way of thinking. It’s not just a subject, it’s like a culture that one must have to not just thrive, but continue to be relevant in the market.”

Digital transformation case studies

Since digital transformation and customer experience go hand in hand, a big part of staying relevant involves finding new and creative ways to attract, engage and retain customers.

As Drina says, “Digital transformation is a reimagining of how businesses work for customers – because it has to begin and end with customers in mind.” 

Some of the biggest brands on the planet are continuously reworking their operating models and implementing digital transformation strategies to gain a competitive edge. Here are three examples: 

  • McDonald’s: Recognising shifts in consumer behaviour, the fast food giant is no stranger to employing digital technologies as a way to improve customer engagement and experience. Most notably, they began installing automated kiosks in 2015, allowing diners to customise their hamburgers. Last year, McDonald’s invested hundreds of millions in real-time AI technology, to create a customisable drive-thru experience that could personalise menus based on customer preference, as well as time, weather and traffic conditions.  
  • Starbucks: The coffee company has a history of embracing technological advancements. In 1998, Starbucks was one of the first companies to launch a website. In 2002, they began offering free wi-fi, turning their stores into all-day hangouts and workspaces. They really upped the ante with their mobile app, which benefits both the customer and the business. Ordering and paying for your daily cuppa without having to wait in a line is a bonus, but so is all that user data. With it, Starbucks has a greater understanding of its customers’ habits and needs. In terms of the app, that means personalised menu recommendations.
  • LEGO: Everyone’s favourite building blocks were all the rage from the 1970s to the early 1990s, when business started to decline. By 2004, LEGO was teetering on the brink of bankruptcy. To stay afloat, they were forced to establish new revenue sources and turned to video games, movies and digital platforms. In 2014, the first LEGO movie brought in $468 million in revenue (production cost $60 million), and today the LEGO Life app has nine million users. Even in this pandemic world, LEGO’s commitment to adaptability has paid off – in the six months to June 30, revenue grew 7% to US$2.46 billion compared to the same period last year.

Start with the foundations of Digital Transformation in our micro-credential

Digital transformation in business isn’t just an IT initiative. Project consultants, infrastructure architects, product developers, digital strategists, operational managers and C-suite executives: entire teams must collaborate to create an environment in which employees can usher in change. The work landscape is constantly evolving, and our Digital Transformation micro-credential is a window into the future. Delivered 100% online, the six-week course explores emerging technologies, innovative work practices and frameworks and how technology continues to redefine the way business gets done.

A successful digital transformation strategy can open up new opportunities to expand, innovate, increase efficiency, enhance performance and improve profitability.

Our micro-credential addresses industry demand for professionals with broad skill sets to implement this change in a digital world.

Find out more about the Digital Transformation courses here.

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