With talk of big data, cloud storage, data analytics, and all the new advances technology is bringing to businesses, you may assume that companies are meeting this digital revolution with arms wide open. But this just isn’t the case.
Almost all companies see the value of making the shift to digital. Most realize that this shift is in their immediate future. However, in a report made by Gartner after interviewing 948 companies in 30 different countries, 59% of them openly admitted that, to their great disappointment, they aren’t ready to embrace the digital age.
Being digital in the business world opens up doors for agility, greater productivity, speed, and ease. But none of these things can describe the process of actually making the shift from one state to the next.
Businesses have to keep running while the remodeling is done and can’t afford to shut down, reinvent themselves, and then start back up again. Investments have already been made and business plans are already in motion that must be committed to unless companies wish to experience extreme and potentially detrimental losses.
Hiring new professionals with the skills needed, retraining current professionals to take on the new abilities needed, and replacing highly expensive technology are just a few of the hurdles, and that’s not even the worst. To thrive in the digital age, executives need to think like the digital generation, with new mindsets on problem solving, business knowledge, and communication skills. Companies are no longer ships that need upgrading—every aspect of them needs rebuilding, and this is a taxing and expensive process.
For most businesses, this leads to a very small pool of resources available to be shared with the digital components they need, resulting in a frustratingly long and, in some cases, impossible process of going digital.
How Can Your Business Be Different?
Looking at the hurdles others are facing, what are a few things your business can implement now to become a member of the 41% ready to embrace the technological age?
Work in Real Time
Technology changes all the time, and most businesses are still in the mindset that says plans can be set in stone years upon years in advance. That’s not the case for the digital playing field.
It’s important for executives to make decisions in real time and embrace agility in altering or revamping plans altogether when the market, trends, or new issues arise. By thinking too far ahead and leaving little room for flexibility, you could not only miss out on opportunities now, but find your projected success completely invalid by the time your determined date arrives.
Changes Can Be Small, but They Must Be Meaningful
Replacing an entire department or completely revolutionizing your storage option into a flash storage array may not be a viable option due to productivity, expenses, and time in general. But rather than sitting back and doing nothing, or driving your business into the dirt by doing too much too fast, the solution to be learned is making changes in bite-sized portions – but making them count. Investments need to work as stepping stones to greater upgrades in the future when time and money allow.
Skill-training within your company needs to focus on skills that are easy to adopt but address current pain points immediately. For example, big data may be too big for you – however, addressing storage can make a huge difference in your ability to collaborate and grow your business, eventually being able to take on larger changes.
Embrace the Strength of Starting Late
Many businesses are either lagging behind with their outdated technology or are losing investments by casting them aside for the new. The natural idea is to make the shift immediate in order to keep up with the competition, but on the contrary, there is strength in starting late.
Rather than adopting all new practices that may prove to be old news or simply not viable by the time you’ve fully implemented them, by assessing what other competitors are using and even companies outside of your industry, you can learn from their experiences to make the best decisions going forward.