What differentiates the most successful digital transformation initiatives from those that fail? Based on working with hundreds of organizations, we’ve unearthed the most effective digital transformation technique:
Define your transformation in terms of your organizational strategy and ideal outcomes. “Transformation” can sometimes be characterized as platitudes and catchphrases with little clarity and “actionable-ness.” For example, “we are going paperless,” is not a strategy. Nor is “start scanning everything.” When defining transformations sometimes the “how” is more important than the “what.” How will you launch your digital transformation strategy? Will you acquire an ECM system like Laserfiche? Be sure to involve senior staff in defining what digital transformation means and looks like for your organization.
Guide behaviors- Agency cultures are complex. Determining what behaviors are needed to be adopted, reinforced, or changed for success can be difficult. Changes can include automation of manual tasks, implementation of increased cybersecurity, creation of new job descriptions, and development of safe, client-side support. It’s critical for management to determine and communicate these behavioral modifications and then define what success looks like, otherwise, how will the organization know when it is successful.
Spend the time to calculate the compelling business case- Without compelling evidence, it is often difficult to get senior staff on board. Consider working with other agencies to see how they calculate ROI. This blog offers some interesting methods. As we grow more sophisticated about digitization we are better able to prove and defend the decision to move forward. In addition, work toward tangible outcomes such as “going forward we’ll take all records requests digitally, via a form, hosted on our website.
Engage the team at all levels- Success with large initiatives such as digitization requires the informed commitment of all levels of the team. This may seem obvious, but we’ve seen senior staff try to tackle substantial change with only tacit approval. They must be clear and consistent in their messaging about both why the culture must change as well as what it is changing. Also, these types of changes can’t be a democratic process. Some decisions are difficult and must be pushed upon the organization. However, the approach should not be autocratic. It’s critical that staff at all levels be asked for their feedback and guidance whether they make it into the final build or not.
Bring data- Examine current methods to measure the current norm. For instance, “presently it takes seven business days to complete a public records request.” Here is an area for impact! Be sure to communicate the estimated improvements to the entire team.”We believe it will take three days to complete PRRs, once we’ve enabled Laserfiche.” Your technology partner can help you determine what the new, improved normal will be.