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Robert Trnovec
Robert Trnovec 2 September 2016

8 Characteristics Of Digitally Mature Companies

Companies that have undergone digital transformation are truly different from those who haven’t started yet. They see technology as one of the factors shaping their business future and creating the conditions for success.

Digital transformation is still topping priority lists for decision makers across the globe. In a new report, Aligning the Organization for Its Digital Focus, nearly 90% of more than 3,700 survey participants from around the globe say they anticipate their industries will be moderately or greatly disrupted by digital trends. At the same time, only 44% believe their organizations are prepared for this shift.

This change will be hard, but waiting to see how things play out is too risky. We are already seeing companies going bust for not dealing with this shift adequately. I understand the instinct to wait – to be successful, companies need people, skills, structure and strategies that will accomplish their goals. Also, as companies we usually need to perform our core business, which leaves less time and less resources free to focus on the move to digital.

However, the report uncovered some traits of the most mature companies:

1. A dynamic internal culture encourages risk taking and agility. 80% of digitally mature companies do this, compared to just 23% of companies in the early stages of digital transformation.

2. The digital strategy is integrated into company’s strategy. Digital is not just something that’s tacked onto company business, it is an integral part of it. It needs to be planned and shaped in response to current threats and challenges. More than 50% of respondents from digitally maturing companies create strategy for terms greater than two years, compared to 34% of early-stage companies.

3. Leaders are the change agents. This is business and in business, change often comes from the top. Companies that want to succeed in digital transformation need to look for people that are forward-looking, have a transformative vision and are focused on change and collaboration.

4. Help your people develop digital skills. 76% of employees at digitally maturing companies say their organization provides employees with the resources and opportunities they need to develop their digital knowledge and skills. This is also very important for retention – people are less likely to leave companies that provide the right mix of training and tools for work.

5. They remove organizational barriers. One of the most important benefits of digital transformation is the ability to collaborate and work together, which is why the most successful companies focus on eliminating barriers between people and processes.

6. They invest in innovation. The most mature companies were more than twice as likely to be investing in innovation than the laggards, 87% to 38%.

7. Decisions are based on data. Instinct decisions are no longer necessary – we have the data and now we just have to use it. There are advanced tools for analytics that can help us make the right decisions at the right time.

8. They want to disrupt. Instead of waiting to be disrupted, digital businesses are looking to disrupt their industries and categories. More than 80% are looking to develop new core businesses in the coming years and are not waiting to have their lunch eaten by smaller and more nimble competitors.

This report highlighted that companies that underwent digital transformation are truly different from those who haven’t started yet. They see technology as one of the factors shaping their business and are working hard to create the conditions to succeed in the future. Companies that are still waiting are increasingly at risk being pushed out of the market by younger or more digital-savvy competitors. But the issue of going digital is no longer a matter of “When”, because it needs to happen now.

Original Article

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