When you think about the benefits of digital transformation in a business, what comes to mind? If you imagine things like speed, agility, accuracy, and efficiency – you’d be correct.
But what if we told you there’s so much more?
The benefits of a digital transformation can include everything from employee wellness to environmental sustainability. Here’s why.
Digital transformation allows businesses – large and small, old and new – to completely redefine themselves, how they operate, and how they create value.
It’s not merely about improving the status quo with a couple tech tweaks here and there. It’s about reimagining what is possible for your business, while using technology as the driving force.
Because digital transformation is an all-encompassing process, its effects on a business are varied, far-reaching, and, in some cases, totally unexpected.
In this article, we’re covering 7 surprising benefits of digital transformation. But first, let’s get a clear idea of what is a digital transformation.
WHAT IS DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION?
There seems to be a lot of buzz around “digital transformation,” but what does it actually mean?
A digital transformation involves revolutionizing a business through a coordinated series of technological changes.
A digital transformation is more complex than just implementing a new piece of technology. It’s about leveraging technology – often various interlocking pieces of technology – to fundamentally rethink the core pillars of your business.
At a global scale, the technological revolution is permanently reshaping the world of work. The way things currently stand, it may seem like digital adoption is optional, or something businesses can use to “get ahead.” However, this is rapidly changing.
The importance of digital tools is growing at a staggering pace. Their centrality in the business world has only been cemented by the recent economic turmoil caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Soon enough, being a highly digital business won’t just be a “pro,” a “luxury,” or an “innovative feature” of a business. It will be a necessity – digital transformation will be vital to ensure survival and relevance in the marketplace.
A digital transformation can innovate your organization’s processes, culture, business model, the very goods or services you offer – or all of the above!
Want to learn more about how to lead a digital transformation? Check out this article!
BENEFITS OF DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION
Digital transformation is a powerful way to streamline business processes across the organization.
“Process transformation” is a category of digital transformation that focuses primarily on improving business processes.
In a process transformation, the transformation strategy revolves around one essential question: how can digital tools revamp our processes and unlock breakthrough efficiency?
A thoughtfully planned digital transformation can eliminate waste, cut out redundancies, mitigate risk, improve cybersecurity, slash processing times, and reduce costs.
The result? Streamlined processes that transform your business into a top-performing powerhouse.
Create a culture of continuous learning
Another surprising digital transformation benefit is the ability to foster a culture of continuous learning.
With the right technology, businesses can upgrade their employees’ learning experiences quickly and effectively.
Further, integrating and layering technology, like Artificial Intelligence (AI) and an LMS system, can create personalized learning experiences that can be seamlessly folded into employees’ everyday routine.
Overall, strategic digital changes can bring consistent, high-quality training to your employees’ fingertips.
In doing so, they can make a culture of learning a reality in your business.
Plus – as more and more companies rush to upskill their employees and fill the needs gap, the importance of a learning culture cannot be overstated.
Read our 4-step guide on how to build a learning culture here!
Improved well-being and work-life balance
Did you know that employee well-being and work-life balance can be a digital transformation benefit? Here’s why.
A digital transformation should substantially improve efficiency at an organization and redefine what it means to work there.
This means repetitive, cumbersome tasks might be, for example, taken over by AI. This leaves your employees more time to do the creative, critical parts of their job that engage their talents and provide a sense of meaning to the work they do.
Moreover, a highly digital workplace can enable flexible work arrangements – such as hybrid or remote work – that give employees more say in how they divide their time between work and home.
This increased flexibility can have far-reaching effects on employees’ work-life balance and personal wellbeing.
Increased accessibility and inclusion
We cannot stress this enough: consumers and employees alike are demanding diversity, equity, and inclusion from businesses.
A little-known – but important – benefit of digital transformation is that it can make your workplace more inclusive and accessible.
For example, a digital transformation that allows your office to operate remotely would give employees the choice to work from home some or all the time.
This seemingly small change could substantially improve the work environment for team members who are disabled, suffer from chronic illness, or are neurodiverse.
Moreover, digital tools like smart devices, screen readers, and speech recognition, can all improve accessibility for employees who are differently abled.
With the help of AI, organizations can even create customizable software navigation experiences that cater to different disabilities.
All in all, digital transformations, at their core, make offices more agile and flexible. This gives organizations more options to accommodate employees and create inclusive work environments.
Stronger supply chain management
If your business is even remotely connected to a supply chain – or perhaps if you’ve set foot in a store in the last two years – you know that the global supply chain was turned on its head.
However, the pandemic was far from the only cause of the supply chain disruptions.
In fact, supply chains had been strained for years. The pandemic was merely the breaking point of unsustainable practices.
The good news? We have all the technology we need to create highly resilient supply chains for businesses of all sizes.
Digital tools – like Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, artificial intelligence (AI), even blockchain – offer the opportunity to improve all areas of supply chain.
This would not only result in immediate cost savings, but it would also steer your organization away from supply chain nightmares in the future.
Better document management
Documents are the lifeblood of every organization. Everything from company policies to project deliverables, to sensitive client data is stored in documents.
Poor document management puts your organization at risk of security breaches, costly document errors, productivity losses, and even losses of clients and customers.
A document management system with a strong digital infrastructure can save your business substantial amounts of time and money through improved document management.
It can enable your organization to standardize documentation procedures, decrease security risks, improve document visibility, streamline information workflows, and more.
Just like with social responsibility, consumers and employees expect businesses to adopt more environmentally sustainable practices.
There are several ways that a digital transformation can lead to a green revolution in your business.
For example, digital supply chain management can allow you to better monitor your vendors and ensure compliance with sustainability protocols.
A staggering amount of environmental damage and waste happens along the supply chain, so cleaning up your supply chain with digital tools can help clean up the planet.
Moreover, digital transformation can reduce your company’s carbon footprint by simply reducing waste.
Think of all the paper your business goes through in a year – imagine if you went paperless! In addition to improving efficiency, it would reduce your consumption of resources.
It’s no secret that a digital transformation improves business efficiency and agility.
But the benefits of digital transformation go far beyond things like speed and cost-effectiveness. Even this list is just the tip of the iceberg!
No matter what your organization’s overarching goals are, a digital transformation can be a powerful strategy to help you achieve them.However, to be successful, a digital transformation must be done with careful planning, fool-proof methodology, fearless leadership, and expert change management techniques.
Want to unlock new possibilities for growth and innovation in your business? Contact us today to embark on your digital transformation journey!