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What is Digital Transformation and How Has It Evolved?

According to the latest report from eMarketer, “Digital Transformation 2017“, most executives think that digital transformation (known as “DX”) is essential to their company, but most have no real idea of what digital transformation means, or how they should approach it.

It’s easy to understand why digital transformation is a concept that’s been met with such scrutiny over the years. This is a term that’s been used to describe everything from creating mobile responsive websites, to updating your social media strategy. However, the truth is that “digital transformation” is more about a journey, than the destination. Here, we’re going to look at the truth behind what digital transformation means, and how it’s evolved over the years.

What is Digital Transformation?

The “official” definition for digital transformation is the accelerating, and significant transformation of business activities, designed to make the most out of changes in the digital landscape, and the impact of technology on society. That might sound a little vague, but it comes down to this: digital transformation is a focus on making sure that you’re “ahead of the curve” when it comes to technology.

Whether that means that you need to ask your specialist recruitment agency to start searching for IT gurus, or that you need to upgrade your sales systems with new automated processes, and chatbots is up to you. In practice, the term “digital transformation” means something different for every organisation. A full transformation could impact every digital asset in your library, including:

  • The use of data
  • Social Platforms
  • Business networks
  • Websites
  • Learning management systems
  • AI and chatbots
  • Automation

What Has Digital Transformation Evolved From?

DXThough it might sound like a pretty modern concept – we’ve faced digital transformation before. Digital transformation has appeared as a buzzword during every technology-based disruption in history – from when we first started using the internet for real back in the 1990s, to when the use of smartphones emerged in the 2000s.

Digital transformation is a concept that’s applied when something significant happens in the technological space – something that impacts every business, no matter the industry. For instance, digital transformation might have happened to you when you took a mobile-first approach to re-designing your website. Or you might have invested in digital transformation when you hired someone to upgrade your sales system.

The things that we believed to be transformational in the past, such as cloud computing, and mobile, have now become commonplace. Instead, we’re facing new disruptive technologies, like AR, VR, and even AI. Digital transformation all comes down to understanding what’s happening around you, and responding to changes in technology accordingly.

Digital Transformation Begins with The Right Mindset

When talking about real transformation in a business, we need to consider a shift in thinking for leadership, and a change in mindset for the full organisation. You might need to look at your existing goals and KPIs for the year ahead, and think about how changing your technology could bring you closer to reaching your goals.

For instance, if your goal is to improve customer experience during the buyer journey, you might want to automate more of your sales processes, or introduce self-service solutions for your customers. However, this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still hire the right sales team. Remember, digital transformation should be about supporting your strategy with technology, not replacing your team with computers.

Digital Transformation is about Customer Experience

Thanks to the word “digital” it’s easy to think of digital transformation as a purely technical challenge. However, the truth is that digital transformation is more about adapting to the shifts in consumer behaviour. We’re living in a time where chatbots are improving user experiences, while virtual reality emerges as a part of our everyday lives.

Rather than being a strategy to buy into the “next big thing” digital transformation is about understanding the needs of your audience, and using the right technologies to boost experience. Think about the way that customer preferences have changed in your industry, and how you can upgrade the experiences that customers have with your brand by implementing new technology.

For some companies, this might mean hiring someone to help you create a new business app, or upgrading your website entirely to use dynamic adverts, and more personalised marketing solutions.

Remember, Digital Transformation is Driven by Data

DXBefore you start rushing off to implement your own digital transformation solutions, remember that digital transformation will be a different experience for different companies. It’s not enough to simply do whatever your competitors are doing and hope for the best. Instead, brands need to consider the data that they’ve gathered about their ideal customers, and create digital solutions that respond to the needs and pain points their customers have.

Jumping to adapt the latest technology in your business might seem like a good idea to stay ahead of the curve, but digital transformation isn’t just about having the latest tech. It’s about making sure that you have the right technology to respond to your business goals, and the needs of your specific audience.

Resource On Demand is Europe’s first specialist Salesforce Recruitment Company. We assist the world’s leading organisations to grow their technology teams. Supporting companies to fill roles that span across digital marketing, marketing automation, Human Capital Management, CRM system management and, Salesforce developer, Salesforce consultant and Salesforce admin jobs.

The team at Resource On Demand have access to an extensive database of key talent, registering over 8000 professionals each year. To find out how we can support you call us on +44 20 8123 7769 or rod@resourceondemand.com.