Digital Transformation with CIOs & CTOs: Game Plan

With a solid understanding of digital transformation, how to implement it, what to focus on, and what to avoid, it’s time to create a solid game plan. CIOs and CTOs are responsible for putting their teams’ ideas into goals, metrics, and timelines to make digital transformation a real part of the organization’s operations. It’s a momentous task and an exciting opportunity to usher in true transformation.

One problem CIOs and CTOs often encounter with digital transformation is an outlook that is too short-term. Establishing a long-term strategy, goals, and metrics to measure performance is a critical element in your ongoing success. Keep in mind that there isn’t a true end to digital transformation. Your organization will evolve, especially as your digital transformation efforts work to improve your operations. Market conditions, challenges, and opportunities will change, too. Think of digital transformation as an ongoing journey that enhances the daily operation and performance of your business.

Setting Digital Transformation Targets

This part of your plan ensures that you have objectives in sight. Your targets need to be clear, so your organization will be able to tell when it has met these goals. Important areas to consider when setting targets are customer experience, your business operations and processes, and their financial impact. 

In the sphere of customer experience, you might set targets like improved staff performance, improved customer satisfaction, the introduction of self-service tools, or a faster lead time to get a product onto the market (or a project / service to be widely adopted). Business operations and process targets could include cost savings, more process automation, or running more sales or training campaigns. 

Your targets should reflect your teams’ hopes for digital transformation, especially at this point where staff support and buy-in are in place. The organization knows what it needs to improve. Your targets should put those needs into tangible goals.

Measuring Digital Transformation Metrics

Without relevant metrics, it’s almost impossible to determine if your organization has met its targets or is on its way to achieving its goals. This fundamental aspect of your digital transformation is something too many organizations skip. A 2017 Gartner survey showed that nearly half of surveyed CEOs didn’t have a digital transformation success metric at all. Put your organization into the more informed half of your peers by identifying and tracking the metrics that correspond with your goals. As a CIO or CTO, it’s your job to help CEOs define and understand these metrics.

Your organization’s key performance indicators start with looking at where your operation is today. Set the baseline for what’s happening before you put your digital transformation plan in place. Then, put numbers to your goals. For example, you might strive for a 20 percent reduction in costs, or five new automated processes within a specific time frame. Productivity is a harder metric to measure, but you can break it down by measuring elements such as increased sales or how many more support tickets staff members fulfill. 

With your goals set and your metrics attached, track those metrics and check in on how close the organization is to reaching its goals. If you find numbers are lagging behind your desired outcome, it’s a good sign that something needs to change. On the other hand, if you’re meeting or exceeding your target figures, you have solid evidence that your digital transformation is working well and you can share that information with decision-makers.

Creating a Digital Transformation Timeline

Your digital transformation timeline will reflect the targets you have set out. The highest priority items should come first in your transformation timeline. Ideally, those will be the transformations with the most positive, visible impacts. Creating a culture of digital transformation is very important to your organization’s success in this endeavor. Being able to point to a successful first few steps can do a lot for buy-in. 

Include your metrics and their benchmarks in your timeline creation. If you want to see an objective come to fruition within a specific time frame, define key dates to analyze whether or not your team will meet that goal. Your timeline should include periods for employee training, customer outreach, any hiring you need to do to accomplish your transformation, and testing of processes and operations before going live. 

Putting Your Game Plan into Action

Consider this a basic framework. The steps we’ve outlined will help shape the way you and your organization approach digital transformation. Our products and our team can help you fill in the details. Connect with us by emailing, calling 801-742-8386, or use our online form.

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