Six keys to successful digital transformation

digital transformation

Digital transformation is a prime objective for many businesses, with 93 percent of enterprises undergoing some kind of project according to a new report.

The survey conducted by Hanover Research and commissioned by digital platform company AHEAD shows these efforts are driven primarily by a desire to cut costs (77 percent) and improve customer experience (71 percent).

Yet of those surveyed, 42 percent are struggling to achieve success as they fall behind schedule or their efforts stall altogether. The most common challenges of enterprise digital transformations are legacy systems (36 percent) and technical debt (24 percent). Also 67 percent of respondents cite infrastructure as a big part of their digital transformation strategy.

So what are the factors that contribute digital transformation success? The report identifies six:

  • Dedicated leadership -- the survey finds 83 percent of digital transformations that are on track or ahead of schedule are led by a CIO, CEO, CDO, or CTO.
  • All-in approach -- transformations that are on track are 30 percent more likely to be structured as full-scale change initiatives. Because digital operations are often so interconnected, piecemeal and partial transformations can often be siloed and result in limited impact on the factors driving the transformation.
  • Defined digital roadmap -- 92 percent of transformations that are on target or ahead of schedule have a defined strategy and roadmap that includes IT infrastructure and operations.
  • Alignment between infrastructure and apps -- enterprises powered by an integrated DevOps approach are 43 percent more likely to see success in digital transformation efforts.
  • Platform mindset -- businesses that include IT infrastructure as a big part of their digital transformation are 36 percent more likely to have a successful transformation.
  • Commitment to intelligent operations -- companies that monitor IT performance in real time and remediate issues quickly are 24 percent more likely to undergo a successful digital transformation.

"Our aim in conducting the survey was to identify those factors most critical to driving transformation success, as well as examine the role that infrastructure and operations play in success," says Tom Pohlmann, head of customer success and marketing at AHEAD. "Transformations are complex and often involve conflicting objectives like cost cutting alongside customer experience improvements. Without a strong foundation on which to build, run and innovate, transformation efforts will fail."

You can find the full report on the AHEAD site.

Photo Credit: Sashkin/Shutterstock

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