Digital Transformation is a lot more than adoption of new technologies. It is about fundamentally changing how an organisation operates. As such, the people and cultural aspects of Digital Transformation cannot be overlooked.
The overlooked aspect of Digital Transformation culture changes
1. The Talent Gap
The execution of a digital strategy requires the right people with the right skill sets. You can either bring new digital skills into the company via recruitment or focus on the development of current employees.
On the recruitment side, the good news is that the Digital Transformation itself could actually help your hiring efforts. In a MIT Sloan’s study, almost 80 per cent of respondents say they want to work for a digitally enabled company.
So you can turn your digital vision into the recruitment tool. By positioning your company as a digital leader, you will have a better chance of attracting the right talent.
Infographic: 10 most valuable technical skills
Also, the above result applies to all age groups. So it is crucial to avoid the misconception that only young employees are interested in digital disruption or possess the needed skills.
Regarding the development of current employees, you can opt for a wide variety of new training approaches, such as online training platforms like Udemy or General Assembly, on-demand training content delivered to employees’ mailboxes or mobile devices, and TED-like talks featuring executives. More important, learning now should be a lifelong experience because technology and customer expectations are evolving fast.
2. The Digital Culture
The ability to adapt is more important in today’s digital world than technology skills, according to Perry Hewitt, Chief Digital Officer at Harvard University. Creating a workplace environment conducive to self-learning, continuous improvement, and adaptation, therefore, is one crucial part of the cultural shift.
As products, services, and customer preferences are becoming increasingly complex, collaborative efforts among different departments and business functions have to become a norm.
According to the research from MIT Sloan and Delottie, 80 per cent of respondents from digitally mature organisations agree or strongly agree their environments are collaborative. By contrast, only 34 per cent from organisations in the earlier stages feel the same way.
Playing it safe is no longer acceptable when disruption is new normal. Innovation cannot be spurred without a tolerance for failure. Digital giants like Google or Apple fail all the time, which is why they can continue to churn out innovative products and services. In most cases, however, both managers and employees are averse to failure. The senior executives must communicate to their managers and employees about the importance of taking risk and encourage them to be bolder.
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