The pandemic caused a digital transformation acceleration that few people anticipated as businesses all over the world transformed themselves to remote-work models and went digital. At the Doha Smart Cities Summit, Lana Khalaf, Country Manager of Microsoft Qatar, said the pandemic delivered two years of digital transformation in two months.
As we start to emerge from our lockdowns and restrictions, one of the most significant questions right now is whether the changes brought on by the pandemic will continue at the same pace. For instance, there have been conversations around the fall of office life and the rise of permanent remote working, how members of organisations interact with each other, and whether we will attract and keep customers in the same way that we did before. In the wake of this period of disruption, many are asking how long are we likely to continue this period of rapid transformation and how will it impact business?
What does digital transformation mean for your business?
The current challenge for businesses is to stay agile so that they will continue to thrive when faced with the unexpected. This is difficult to do when some have legacy business issues such as siloed teams and fragmented data. The pandemic has taught this type of business a valuable lesson. The external environment can significantly affect the performance of the company, and reacting accordingly is crucial for post-Covid survival.
Just as many of the changes brought on by the pandemic need to stay in place (and some might even become permanent), the rapid digital shift continues and businesses that want to stay afloat have no choice but to fully embrace digital transformation.
What is your top priority now?
You should focus your attention on creating platforms that can engage customers in real-time. In other words: creating cohesive customer journeys across channels and devices. Unfortunately, some CEOs (and McKinsey confirms this) think that they can foster a little digital venture and then reinvent their business around it. This isn’t effective for your business – a successful transformation is holistic. It doesn’t happen in isolated parts.
The pandemic has already exposed the digital inequalities of businesses. They might see it as a minor setback, but it is, in fact, a major threat to them. Digital infrastructure is now a critical business resource. It’s not like businesses did not see this coming. The need for digital transformation has been around for years. The pandemic simply forced companies to catch up or lose out.
So how do you get it right?
It’s imperative to have a deep understanding of your current processes to determine the need for adding a new digital process that will truly add value. It’s about sifting through the myriad of tools and applications available and finding what’s right for your business. Base your digital planning on insights gained from your customers, and don’t stay rigid. It must change with customer behaviours. Digital transformation is never done – it’s an ongoing journey.
Get the right support
The reality is most businesses cannot respond on their own because of limited digital resources. These businesses would require more robust digital intervention to foster a digital environment that thrives over time.
Check this out if you’d like to see how we achieved successes for our clients during the pandemic. As I mentioned, this period necessitated digital transformation but is a reminder that it was also a tricky time for growth. Many businesses put their operations on hold while they tried to figure out what was likely to happen. Here are a few examples of website traffic growth:
- In 2019-2020 the Avis Fleet website (which we reworked as a crucial part of Avis Fleet’s digital transformation and its sales strategy in general) achieved a 49% increase in website growth. In the same period we achieved a 28% increase in leads.
- In 2019-2020 the MICHELIN website (which formed part of a strategy to drive engagement to engage and retain audience leads for longer) achieved a 34% increase in website growth. In the same period we achieved a 33% increase in leads.
- In 2019-2020 we onboarded BFGOODRICH and aimed to expand its digital process. In this period, the BFGOODRICH website achieved a 300% increase in website growth. We also achieved a 140% increase in leads.
To answer the initial question, we will all have to keep an eye on changes in the coming months to see how long the digital shift will keep up this accelerated momentum, but for now, it’s set to continue. Those who haven’t jumped on the train should consider getting on as soon as they can to avoid falling behind. (As with all major trends) businesses that come out on top react the quickest in the beginning. To get your foot in the door right now, download our digital transformation brochure.
Contact us to discuss how we can help you build a holistic digital strategy to support your operations and achieve digital transformation that will put you ahead of the curve.