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Biggest challenges in digital transformation and how to make it easier

Digital transformation is like a software update for your organization. Every two-three years, there are new upgrades in the strategic, customer, and technical aspects of a business, thanks to the ever-evolving digital landscape.

So the answer to the question, “why are businesses experiencing a digital transformation?” is very simple. It is the need of the hour and if they don’t follow these trends or periodic upgrades, they stand to become irrelevant.

So if staying relevant is the question, digital transformation is the answer. For all kinds of businesses, across industries.

Having said that, there are several digital transformation pitfalls that need to be avoided or resolved for a smooth software or business upgrade experience. And that’s exactly what we’ll walk you through today. Starting with:

Understanding Digital Transformation Pitfalls

When we dive head first into something without understanding what all it really entails and without a clear strategy in mind, things naturally tend to unravel fast. And that’s what you need to avoid, especially when running a business – where one wrong move can have massive financial setbacks.

To avoid such disasters, it’s important that SME owners comprehend what are the most common digital transformation pitfalls and how they can be avoided or handled, according to the situation.

Some of the these are:

  • Usage of outdated legacy systems
  • Absence of proper digital skills within the workforce
  • Resistance to change, etc.

The first step to resolving digital transformation challenges is to identify them. And that’s what you need to start with by doing a thorough evaluation of your business’s current performance.

Digital Transformation Challenges

Digital transformation challenges

Let’s take a deep dive into the different kinds of digital transformation challenges and the impact they can have on your business:

1: Hindrance to Change

Resistance to change is such a human notion and is one of the most common challenges when it comes to implementing digital transformation.

When employees come to learn about the implementation of new technologies or changes in the existing business strategies, it tends to make them uneasy. Fearing job displacement and the sense of being overwhelmed by these new changes are the common reasons why.

Therefore, in order to foster a culture where change is welcomed and not feared, you need to train and nurture them. This needs to be done in a way that helps them become more adaptable to change so that they spend less time resisting it, and more time in acclimatizing themselves to these changes.

But don’t forget that their concerns should be heard and they need to feel supported as well, during such transition phases. Your employees need to feel heard as well and this what makes a transformation easier for all.

2: Preparing for the Risks that Accompany Digital Transformation

Prevention is always better than cure. You know how dynamic the digital space is and it naturally comes with its own set of inherent risks. Some of the include cybersecurity threats, system failures, and so on.

As a business owner, you need to recognize that these are some of the most prominent disadvantages of digital transformation and prepare accordingly. SME owners have to give cybersecurity measures a priority because they can literally make or break their business.

Work on setting up robust risk management strategies that’ll help you protect your business from any potential threats.

3: What’s the Right Choice for Your Business?

There are so many options to choose from. By default, picking the right one becomes one of the digital transformation problems.

It’s stating the obvious but nonetheless, you need to go with one that goes with the objectives of your business. It’s a daunting task but if successfully done, highly rewarding as well. Here are some steps you can follow to make the right choice:

  • Business needs: Go over your current business process to gauge what the issues and pain points are and determine what goals do you have for digital transformation.
  • Gather information: Conduct in-depth research and shortlist the available technologies that are there in the market that’ll go well with your business goals.
  • Talk to industry experts: Learn from industry experts, consultants, and technology vendors to understand these emerging technologies right from the specialists’s viewpoint.
  • Calculate the potential ROI: Go over the potential Return on Investment (ROI) of each one of the chosen technologies to get a clear understanding of which one fits your budget and needs.
  • Evaluate scalability and flexibility: Keep the ones that are scalable and flexible enough to allow your future growth and incorporate changes at the top of your list.
  • Focus on security and compliance: Go for technologies that give utmost importance to security and compliance with industry standards. Safeguard your business from potential threats.
  • Seek the help of stakeholders and end users: Engage them in the decision-making process so that you can rest assured that the buy-in and alignment are not at crossroads with your main goals.
  • Test and repeat: Carry out pilot tests and/or proof-of-concept projects to analyze and validate what works and what doesn’t. You need to be sure before full deployment of selected technologies.

If you follow these, you can steer clear of one of the potential digital transformation pitfalls and choose the right technologies for your business.

4: Integration Challenges

Digital transformation challenges

Digital transformation challenges also include issues with integration. Integration is not just about choosing the right technologies but about seamlessly integrating them in the existing system.

That is a core issue since messing with or changing current systems can bring a lot of disruption to business operations. In order to avoid this, you need to work on developing and executing a phased approach.

Further, seek the help of technology partners since they know their products best and let them train the employees on how to navigate these technologies and therefore, streamline the integration process with minimal disruptions.

5: Establish Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

What are exams without report cards? You won’t know whether you’ve been successful in your integration of these technologies if you don’t have the numbers and metrics to back you up.

Therefore, you need to establish certain Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and monitor them regularly to keep a check on how well you’re progressing, with respect to your goals.

6: Failings Bring Learnings: Case Studies

You won’t know until you’ve tried. And while this holds true, you’ll need to also put this knowledge to use, irrespective of whether your experiment has worked or not.

With the help of a digital transformation failure case study, you get to study the mistakes other businesses have made – be it the different challenges, strategies and the various outcomes.

You can actively gain valuable knowledge from past mistakes so that you can make informed decisions and also save time, money, and efforts. This will further develop a culture of experimentation that enables employees to take well-thought out risks and be more resilient in the face of change.

Not to mention, you can also sidestep another one of digital transformation pitfalls and adjust your strategies based on what you learn.

Ready to Become a Digital Ready Business?

Become a digital ready business

On a conclusive note, we would just like to emphasize that digital transformation isn’t just about an upgrade in the technology that a company uses. It is, in fact, a fundamental shift whose effects change the way businesses function and operate on a day-to-day basis.

Overcoming the many digital transformation challenges is a great way for all SME owners to welcome change and incorporate it into their businesses in order to stay relevant, drive innovation, and future-proof their demand in the market.

Try to understand these digital transformation problems as well as you can so that you can pass on that knowledge to your workforce and build a community that welcomes change and the complexities of the digital age and doesn’t shy away from expanding their reach.

This journey might seem overwhelming at first but rest assured, the results will be more than worth it. With enhanced productivity, improved customer experiences, and sustainable growth, a successful transition will help you thrive in this digital economy.

And if you need any help in navigating this journey, feel free to reach out to us at Customerization. We are more than happy to help!

  • What is the greatest barrier to successful business process change?

    The biggest barrier to successful business process change is resistance to change within an organization. Employees may be reluctant to adopt new methods or technologies due to fear of the unknown, concerns about job security, or lack of understanding of the benefits of change 


    Overcoming this resistance requires effective communication, leadership support and a culture that embraces innovation and continuous improvement

  • Why are businesses experiencing a digital transformation?

    Companies are undergoing digital transformation primarily due to rapid technological advances and changing expectations from customers and markets. In today’s digital age, technology plays a central role in how businesses operate, interact with and compete with customers.

    In addition, digital transformation increases productivity and offers many benefits such as improved customer experience, access to new markets and the ability to adapt to the evolving business environment.