Where to start with digital transformation

Digital transformation empowers you to speed up, improve, and modernize your business processes and services. From implementing new technologies to automating workflows, digital transformation improves efficiency, industry relevance, and economic survival. But for all its critical benefits, digital transformation is a significant undertaking for most organizations, requiring lots of preparation, analysis, and research. One of the most important considerations is where to start. 

Use these steps to create a digital transformation plan for implementing new technologies and solutions. 

Understanding the role of cloud storage in digital transformation

Cloud storage solutions are at the core of digital transformation. That’s why one of the first digital transformation steps is migrating your content to the cloud. With the cloud as your central location for content and software apps, you can completely transform your digital strategy. Best of all, you achieve digital transformation by enabling your company to collect, store, analyze, and integrate business data to improve various business processes.

Working in the cloud equips teams with:

  • Secure data storage: Many cloud storage providers offer security controls like user authentication to prevent internal and external data security risks 
  • Content accessibility: Because the cloud is accessed via an internet connection, users access content in the cloud from any secure device at any time
  • Team collaboration: With all your content in one place, users access and work on tasks, projects, and files together — either simultaneously or asynchronously

Cloud storage solutions allow secure content storage, accessibility, and improved collaboration

Cloud storage also plays a critical role in effective digital transformation because it’s scalable. This benefit of cloud storage allows you to increase or decrease your storage needs as your business changes or demand fluctuates. Cloud scalability leads to significant cost savings, as you avoid the ongoing costs of maintaining a traditional data storage infrastructure. 

Assessing the current state and objectives

Once you understand the importance of the cloud in digital transformation, begin evaluating your organization’s current technology infrastructure and capabilities. Assessing your existing situation helps you identify pain points and areas for improvement in business processes. Consider every area of your organization, including leadership, company culture, technology, process operations, data management, and customer experience.

Using your assessment, define clear objectives and goals. Your digital transformation will likely be ongoing, so your goals should be realistic and flexible. As you set goals, keep customer expectations in mind. Digital tools offer innovative ways to create better products and features for customers — a significant part of digital transformation.

Cloud solutions and digital tools make meeting customer requirements easier and improve the customer experience

You’ll need to involve many different stakeholders in the assessment process — company leadership, heads of various departments, IT, and even outside stakeholders such as business partners and customers. In some cases, you’ll need their buy-in to ensure the transformation is funded and goes smoothly. Their involvement in goal-setting and assessment helps them understand where digital transformation will be most beneficial and why it matters in the first place. Certain departmental stakeholders may even have specific areas they hope to address with digital transformation, which is important to know from the beginning. Plus, getting early stakeholder buy-in increases the chances of success once your strategy is implemented.

Establishing leadership and building a digital culture

The better prepared your organization is for digital transformation, the more effective the strategy will be. Preparedness must include building a digital culture and providing proper training for affected team members. Consider appointing a dedicated digital transformation team of champions to guide the company during this change. Establishing digital transformation leadership ensures team members have someone to look to for guidance. These champions should empower team members to embrace digital transformation by adopting it themselves.

This is where change management becomes a critical part of digital transformation, which often means significant changes to processes and workflows — a challenging adjustment for some team members. As paper-based processes are deprecated and new apps and platforms introduced, various teams will have to adapt to new workflows. Integrations will help you simplify your tech stack by sharing data and content across platforms, making it easier to strategize your digital transformation and facilitate a smooth change management process.

Promote a culture of continuous learning and adaptation throughout the digital transformation process. Provide ongoing training to prepare team members to use and understand new technologies, processes, and policies before officially implementing them. Well-trained and supported team members will use new digital processes more effectively, helping digital transformation go smoothly. Consistent training also fosters digital fluency across all levels of the organization, increasing efficiency, collaboration, and productivity.

Overall, encourage a mindset shift toward digital innovation and agility to build a digital culture throughout your organization. Be sure to communicate your vision and goals for digital transformation so team members understand your expectations moving forward.

Selecting the right technology partners

Assess your organization’s technology needs and gaps to identify what types of technology partners will help make digital transformation happen. Every service provider offers different solutions and options, so researching and evaluating potential technology partners is essential. For example, when searching for cloud storage solutions and providers, consider their:

  • Security: What data security and compliance features are included with the solution?
  • Scalability: Will you have the option to scale your cloud solution as needed?
  • Integration capabilities: Can the solution easily integrate with your existing platforms and technologies?
  • User experience: Will the ease of use of the tools make change management and user adoption easier or harder?

Also, consider any vendor support, training options, content migration, and consulting solutions, as these factors are helpful when implementing new technology or when problems arise down the road. For example, does the technology provider offer implementation resources, guides, and training to make the process smoother? The right technology partners are just that — partners. They should provide support even after your initial purchase.

The right vendors partner with your company and provide support after your initial purchase

Weigh your options carefully, and consult with multiple potential technology partners. Live demos and free trials can help you determine what works best for your organization and which providers are most beneficial. Providers that offer flexibility and future-proofing are more likely to be long-lasting partners through future digital changes.

Implementing a digital transformation roadmap

As you begin implementing digital transformation, remember — it’s a journey that can’t be done all at once. Creating a step-by-step digital transformation plan breaks down the process into manageable initiatives and steps. Prioritize implementations based on potential impact and feasibility. For example, solutions like cloud storage significantly affect numerous areas of your company and pave the way for future digital transformations, so you may place more importance on cloud solutions in your roadmap and implement them sooner than other solutions, like apps that might assist only one part of your organization.

When creating your digital transformation roadmap, use this time to allocate resources and budget accordingly. Consider your available funds at the start of the roadmap and what you expect your budget to be in the future. This helps you determine when to implement certain solutions. 

Lastly, be flexible with your digital transformation roadmap. There are many ways to achieve digital transformation, so if one thing isn’t working, change course to try something else. Change is constant with technology, and there’s always room for improvement. 

Discover the power of the Content Cloud

With a single secure platform for all your content, Box enables you to plan your digital transformation as you manage the entire content lifecycle (that’s everything from file creation, to co-editing, sharing, e-signature, classification, retention, and beyond). We make it easy for you to collaborate on content with anyone, both inside and outside your organization. Frictionless, enterprise-grade security and compliance are built into our DNA, so you get total peace of mind that your content is protected. And with 1,500+ seamless integrations — as well as a range of native capabilities, like Box Sign — the Content Cloud provides a single content layer that ensures your teams can work the way they want.

The Content Cloud is a game changer for the entire organization, streamlining workflows and boosting productivity across every team. Contact us today and explore what you can do with Box.

While we maintain our steadfast commitment to offering products and services with best-in-class privacy, security, and compliance, the information provided in this blogpost is not intended to constitute legal advice. We strongly encourage prospective and current customers to perform their own due diligence when assessing compliance with applicable laws.

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