Digital Transformation Starts with Embracing Change » Chris Hood

Digital Transformation Starts with Embracing Change

Making major changes is never easy for any business. But the costs of change usually bring their own rewards. In the case of digital transformation, advances in the way we use data, how we relate to each other via social media, and our rapid adaptation of mobile and connected devices all mean that businesses are being obligated to adopt new processes in order to keep up. Organizations who embrace these changes also see an opportunity to leverage these advances in their favor.

Changes are being made both internally (within the workplace) and externally (customer relations and marketing). As technology evolves, customers have different expectations of how they can interact with businesses. Today, they want to be able to use their mobile devices to research, shop and receive customer service support. In fact, mobile is so important that in 2015, Google started taking into consideration a website’s mobile-friendliness when determining its page rank. That means that businesses who haven’t adapted their sites for mobile compatibility have fallen in the rankings, making it more difficult for customers to find their business in a Google search. But mobile-friendliness doesn’t only affect your search-ability. A poorly designed mobile site means trouble for business when you consider that 61 percent of mobile users won’t revisit a site they had difficulty accessing while another 40 percent will go to a competitor’s site instead.

Another area that’s seen a massive digital transition in recent years is customer service. Call centers are being replaced by omni-channel support, a form of customer service that offers a variety of platforms (live chat, text, social media, video chat and more) to choose from. The key to omni-channel is integrating all of those customer service platforms to offer a seamless experience that allows the customer to switch channels without ever having to repeat information. Businesses who have invested heavily in omni-channel have reported as high as 89 percent customer retention rate. As customers become more accustomed to the choice and convenience omni-channel offers them, they’ll be less satisfied with businesses who don’t offer such services while those who step up will be reaping the rewards in customer retention.

We are now in the age of personalization with information on customer preferences, demographics, location, purchase history and behaviors being curated to offer more and more personalized and targeted marketing. That’s because our access to data has also seen an exponential increase with our ability to collect data quickly and to apply it effectively having evolved significantly. Personalization is an effective marketing strategy with 66 percent of consumers affirming that personalization affects their decision to purchase a product. As the speed and accuracy of data synchronization increases, personalization will only become more important.

Internal processes are also improved by the adoption of new technologies. The rise of remote work, is a great example of how companies who embrace digital transformations have been able to thrive. In 2015, 45 percent of American employees did some type of remote work. As the traditional office landscape changes and remote work becomes more common, communication tools are more important than ever. Programs that allow for collaboration on projects from disperse staff members, file-sharing, texting and messaging, in-company social media platforms, virtual staff meetings and more all make it possible to run successful remote businesses. Here are some tools that you could check out. In case you’re wondering, it’s not just tech companies that have aced the remote team business model. Ignition Law, a law firm startup that uses an all-remote team has had enormous success, servicing 200 clients in their first year? By employing qualified lawyers who want to work remotely, they’re able to cut costs by up to 60% of competing law offices. How’s that for embracing change?

As our world becomes more and more data driven, businesses who spearhead digital transformations will be making their way to the front of the pack as industry leaders. Where do you want your business to be?

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