Digital transformation does not come easy. In fact, the latest research suggests 70 percent or more of digital transformation projects fail. To get it right, business leaders need to successfully bring together a mix of elements, including the right leaders, the right priorities, and the right ways to determine digital success. But that’s not all. Your company’s digital transformation success also depends on having the right people with the right mindset to move your business forward.
Below we look at the four key areas of talent that help determine digital transformation success that were recently highlighted in the Harvard Business Review (HBR). According to the HBR article, “Success requires bringing together and coordinating a far greater range of effort than most leaders appreciate.”
How is your company managing digital transformation across these four areas?
- Technology: The range of new technologies contributing to digital transformation can be daunting. Artificial intelligence. Data analytics. Machine learning. The Internet of Things (IoT). The list goes on. Keeping it all under control and moving in the right direction not only requires people with deep knowledge across all of these domains but also effective leaders that can communicate well and can bring it all together. Other areas of focus include ensuring employee trust in the IT department and demonstrating the business value of each innovation, according to the article.
- Data: Understanding all the different types of data that your company needs to succeed can be a massive undertaking—and an effort that never ends. According to the HBR article, “Transformation almost certainly involves understanding new types of unstructured data, massive quantities of data external to your company, leveraging proprietary data, and integrating everything together, all while shedding enormous quantities of data that have never been (and never will be) used.” To do this, you need people with both breadth and depth of knowledge in data, as well as the communication skills needed to convince employees of the value as “customers” and “creators” of data used by the company.
- Process: Digital transformation spans the business, including rethinking ways to meet customer needs, connecting processes and work activities, and managing the business across silos. Success requires a “process-oriented” approach, however, this is an area where most businesses have been challenged in their transformation. When it comes to talent, the HBR article suggests hiring people who can “herd cats” in the direction of the customer to redesign existing processes or create new ones. Your people should also have a strong ability to recognize when incremental change is sufficient or more radical change is needed.
- Organizational Change: People skills are key to digital transformation success. According to the HBR article, these skills include “leadership, teamwork, courage and emotional intelligence.” Business leaders are encouraged to embrace these human elements of change and ensure they hire people with the right skills to champion them and therefore build a data-driven culture.
If you’d like to learn more about how to pull it all together, check out the complete HBR article.