The fourth strategic focus area of the Hume digital strategy is about encouraging digitally enabled business in the Hume region. New research conducted by IBM and the NIEIR (National Institute of Economic and Industry Research) has presented evidence of superior financial performance for digitally advanced enterprises.
The key message is that enterprises cannot afford to stand still as digital technologies continue to redefine the business and government landscape. Several factors, including faster broadband and more sophisticated e-commerce systems, are exposing Australian organisations to unprecedented competition both domestically and abroad.
Organisations who recognise the need for change can build a transformation agenda as set out by the IBM report in five steps below.
1. Establish your position quickly. Establish whether you are a leader or a follower within your market. A good way to look at this is to focus on metrics that indicate your ability to compete in the digital age. e.g. percentage of services or sales delivered online.
2. Clarify timing. How important is it to be a leader in your sector? How quickly are digital technologies impacting your industry and how fast is your organisation’s capacity to change? These are questions you need to consider when timing your digital transformation.
3. Identify levers for action. Review which ‘levers’ are available to your organisation to drive change. They may be how you deal with your customers, how you reinvent your work practices and incentives, how you manage your cost base, how you use technology and assets or how you engage with your stakeholders.
4. Set priorities. While all your levers of change are important, you will need to decide where to focus your efforts and in what time frames. Keep in mind the plans of your competitors and how each set of actions tie back to your transformation objectives. Be sure to track progress once your priorities have been decided.
5. Develop a transformation narrative. Create a ‘story’ that clearly expresses your current position, the need for change and your plan for the future. Undertake the narrative on both a high level and a detailed business level. Describe how time will be managed and set targets.
While the IBM research is targeted at generally larger enterprises, all local businesses can start by completing the online digital readiness diagnostic. The 25 question tool will help you understand where you currently stand and where you need to go.