Five-Steps to a Successful Digital Transformation

5 Steps to a Successful Digital Transformation

A successful digital transmission adoption depends on having a sound strategy. Businesses that have successfully embraced digital transformation don’t just adopt individual technologies to solve their problems. More often than not, they have a defined strategy with clear objectives to guide the transformation of their overall business.

What follows are five steps, that when mapped out and implemented properly, will help you develop a successful digital transformation strategy for your business that will reap benefits almost immediately.

1. What is Your Digital Transformation Objective?

When adopting new technologies, there are two missteps that businesses often make. First, they look to embrace technologies currently in use in other departments within their company, or even look to an application currently in use by a competitor. Second, they look to improve their capabilities without giving any thought to specific goals or problem areas that they want to be solved. So, in effect, they may still be spinning their wheels because it’s not solving their current isolated and siloed company-wide technology issues, making it even more difficult to integrate and scale in the future.

The better way is to start by defining what you want your business to accomplish through digital transformation. Define what a successful digital transformation means for your overall business and for your customers. And make sure that includes what would make for better customer engagements and experiences. By establishing these objectives, your business can adopt the right technologies, keeping a clear focus on improving the overall business, instead of just individual processes. Not only does this help in developing a comprehensive strategy that involves and transforms the entire business, but it also avoids the siloed adoption of technologies, including disconnected legacy systems and unorganized databases.

Defining the overall objective is the most important step in developing your digital transformation strategy. It aligns and drives transformation at every level of the business, even reaching the customers, enabling you to create a lasting competitive advantage. In addition, it provides a reference point for assessing and determining specific actions to take and initiatives to act upon in the transformation process.

2. Design Your Customer and Employee Experience

With defining your objectives behind you, it’s now time to focus on designing the experience you envision for your customers and employees. Remember, a proper digital transformation prioritizes and values user experiences as much as it adds and introduces new functions and capabilities. So, instead of only focusing on the requirements of new solutions and the constraints of your current technologies, your business also needs to focus on the experiences you want to provide your end-users.

For this step, your overall transformation objectives should be mapped out as specific and detailed goals. These goals should include how a staff member’s work can be streamlined via new software, applications, or functionalities. For customers, goals should be focused on things such as making a better shopping experience through your website or mobile app. And don’t forget to include ways your staff members can better collaborate, engage, and interact not only with each other but with your customers through your new digital platforms and technologies.

3. Evaluate Your Current Technologies

In the first two steps, we talked about where your business wants to be and what you want to achieve through digital transformation. The next step will be a hard look at where you currently are and gives you an idea of where your business started in its journey and the gaps that need to be filled.

In this third step, take stock of your company’s existing software, applications, and technologies. You have to determine, based on the objectives you established and the design you’ve created, which specific technologies need to stay active, upgraded, automated, or discontinued.

The goal in this step is to match the technologies with the outcomes they deliver and the problems they solve. This can help prioritize the technologies that will be updated in your digital transformation and align them with the objectives and the desired experience. It can also help determine the integration solutions your business needs to bring together siloed and disparate systems.

4. Your Solutions and Partners

Step four in your digital transformation strategy is centered on assessing and selecting possible solutions to meet your established objectives, your desired staff and customer experiences, and filling in the gaps of your existing technologies.

If you don’t have the internal capabilities to make your digital transformation upgrades and need to outsource your solution, this step’s main requirement is that you complete a careful and thorough review of possible solutions and offerings from different vendors. In addition to the capabilities and functionalities of the solutions a vendor can offer, they should also have a proven track record and should be flexible to work with. The vendor also needs to be able to provide the necessary post-sales support without delay. It’s not out of the question that problems could arise after the development and implementation of your chosen solution.

You may also want to consider creating a comparison chart of solutions and vendors. Think of it as an objective tool in your quest for making an informed choice.

5. The Digital Transformation Implementation Timeline

The fifth and final step in your digital transformation plan assembles the overall business objectives, desired experiences, existing technologies, and possible solutions together and consolidates them into an actionable plan. A digital transformation initiative takes time and resources, both human and financial, thus the reason it is often done in stages. It is critical to carefully plan when each action — such as a technology assessment or a vendor meeting — should be taken to ensure that human and capital resources are available.

Your implementation timeline will also give all stakeholders, from C-suite executives to staff members and customers, a much-needed heads-up to generate support for the digital transformation initiative while minimizing disruptions to your business operations. A digital transformation project, like any other business project, requires continuous support from every corner of the organization to ensure its success.

Finally, an implementation timeline provides your business with a benchmark it can use to compare actual results with planned results. It also aids the project leaders in managing and governing the project.

By following these simple, but important steps outlined above, your business will be well on its way to developing a successful and seamless digital transformation strategy.

At Ad Victoriam Solutions, our consulting team helps companies with their digital transformation strategies every single day, and every step of the way. Our certified experts learn your business, connect your data, then help your company deliver the type of customer experience that taps into the preferences of your modern customer. Let’s put a plan together today!

Related Article:
It’s the Best Time for Digital Transformation – Here’s Why

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Ad Victoriam Earns Salesforce Gold Partner Status

Salesforce Gold Partnership

salesforce gold consulting partner

And the gold goes to…Ad Victoriam Solutions!

Here at AdVic, we’re proud to have achieved GOLD PARTNER status, a highly coveted position within the Salesforce.com partner community.

This honor is awarded in September 2017 based on our proven combination of application expertise and certifications, superior customer satisfaction ratings and project experience. The combined points make up a business’s PVS (Partnership Value Score).

The scoring system is broken up into two major areas: customer success and expertise.

AdVic Customer Success

Partners are awarded Specializations and Masters based on demonstrated expertise by submitting customer success stories, projects and references.

Once projects are finished, customers complete a survey that generates a Customer Satisfaction Score based on their experience with the partner.

Salesforce Expertise

One area in which expertise is awarded is in system architecture. Possible certifications include certified application architect and certified system architect.

Application Architects. Certified Application Architects must prove that they have a thorough understanding of native Salesforce features and functionality, including the skills and knowledge to model a role hierarchy, data model and appropriate sharing mechanisms. Prerequisites for this certification include:

  • Salesforce Certified Data Architecture and Management Designer
  • Salesforce Certified Sharing & Visibility Designer
  • Salesforce Certified Platform Developer I
  • Salesforce Certified Platform App Builder

System Architects. A Salesforce Systems Architect certification proves a consultant’s expertise in testing, governance and integration of Salesforce to other external systems. Certain prerequisites must be met in order to achieve this level of certification, including:

  • Certified Development Lifecycle and Deployment Designer
  • Certified Identity and Access Management Designer
  • Certified Integration Architecture Designer
  • Certified Platform Developer I

Another area is consulting. Consultant certifications are earned as a company shows its ability to successfully design and implement solutions that contribute to long-term customer success. Possible certifications include sales cloud consultant and service cloud consultant.

Additional points may be earned with expanded knowledge certifications. These may include any of the following:

  • App Builder
  • Data Architecture & Management Designer
  • Mobile Solutions Architecture Designer
  • Advanced Administrator
  • Marketing Cloud Social Specialist

What does all of this mean for you?

It proves that Ad Victoriam Solutions is committed to your success! Contact us today and let us handle your IT challenges.

Why Business Intelligence (BI) Tools Matter

Business Intelligence Blog

Even with companies using a tool like Salesforce® to house a majority of their business processes, there are always other pieces of data that live outside of Salesforce. Business intelligence tools can help.

Business Intelligence (BI) tools allow organizations to bring together multiple data sources into one centralized location.  This means that now we can connect all of your systems together and find actionable insights between them.  These tools offer powerful data visualizations that set them apart from standard CRM reports and dashboard capabilities.  These tools are also built to handle large quantities of data, and because of that they are able to handle millions of records lightning fast.

Reasons Why business intelligence Matters

Save time

As a big fan of automation inside the workplace, the amount of Excel-based reports and dashboards that have to be crunched and reported weekly, monthly, quarterly, and yearly is too high.  Everything that we are doing in Excel can be automated with a Business Intelligence tool.  I have seen many manual Excel reports and dashboards built into a Business Intelligence tool, like Salesforce’s Einstein Analytics, become completely automated and save days or weeks of manual Excel work every year.

Act faster

Now that we don’t have to wait days or weeks for a report to be built, you can act swiftly on your data.  Your analytics are at the tip of your fingers and in some cases, like with Wave, on your phone.  With advanced filtering options, you’re able to quickly and easily view your data through many different perspectives.  You can quickly filter your whole dashboard by a particular sales rep, region, or product.  Or maybe you want to change the dashboard from year to date to this quarter.  Whatever it might be, these tools make those filters easier than ever before.

Analyze data

Now that we have just freed up an individual or team from having to build a time-consuming Excel report, what are we to do with all of this extra time?  Analyze the data!  You can begin to look at the data in your system through a different lens.  As you dive deeper in your data, you’ll find other insights that are beneficial to the company.

Insights into data quality

As you are analyzing and building out your dashboards with a business intelligence tool, you will find that there might be some gaps in your data.  These gaps are often related to missing or inaccurate data.  As you begin to use different insightful dashboards that were previously near impossible or too time-consuming to build, you can start to see some gaps in your data.  These gaps usually bring up the idea of implementing a Data Governance team inside your organization.

For further insight into leveraging BI tools like Salesforce to boost workplace automation in your business, contact us at Ad Victoriam Solutions for answers.

Major Players in the IoT Space, Pt. 2: Microsoft

The Internet of Things is all around us: sensors, various devices, data, and of course cloud services. Since Microsoft already commands one of the largest and most flexible cloud services, it‘s only reasonable that the tech giant would also work to provide enterprises with their own vision of IoT.

Microsoft IoT works best through the storing, gathering and processing of data. Here are two specific aspects of Microsoft’s IoT business model that are quickly growing in popularity:

Operational Efficiency

Microsoft IoT help retailers run their businesses more efficiently by employing IoT to monitor the telemetry of various scenarios. Below are three real-life business examples:

  • In-store traffic can be monitored to show which days (and times) are the busiest. This can help business owners know precisely when to have the most merchandise in stock and when to have more employees working.
  • Businesses that require refrigeration can use IoT-collected data to monitor temperatures and help reduce product loss from improper temperature storage.
  • RFID sensors can be added to products to track product availability in various retail situations.

Business Intelligence

If your business has employed any of the operational efficiency models listed above or other models, business intelligence with Microsoft can further enhance your business’s IoT. For example:

  • When employing in-store monitoring, consider using it in conjunction with other types of data sets. For instance, also incorporating weather data can help you decide which products you should stock.
  • When employing refrigeration monitoring, the data collected can be used to predict when the refrigeration unit(s) require maintenance.

Cloud computing and the Internet of Things are becoming more important by the year. In order to keep your business relevant, you should strongly consider employing some aspects of cloud computing. If you’re unsure of where to begin, contact Ad Victoriam Solutions.

Stay tuned to our blog to learn more about IoT, enterprise technology solutions and much more. For starters, check the other installments of this blog series including how the Internet of Things pertains to Salesforce®.

A Glimpse into the Growth Pattern of Cloud Analytics

business intelligence & cloud computing

Developments in cloud systems, services and SaaS apps have come a long way in the last decade. Cloud-based analytics and intelligence are quickly becoming an integral part of many businesses around the world.

The last ten years or so companies like Salesforce, Microsoft, SAP, Oracle, Google and Amazon have all taken their businesses and their products to the cloud. Chances are this is just the beginning.

As social networking and computer-based marketing have risen in popularity, it has allowed even more data to accumulate in the cloud. This has led to various SaaS (Software as a Service) marketing options to rise in popularity as well.

The everyday use of technology in society has a huge influence over the prevalence of cloud computing—namely the volume of mobile apps used on smartphone and tablets. As mobile app usage increases, the need to store and analyze all of this data becomes more imperative than ever.

Benefits of Big Data Cloud Analytics

Offsite cloud storage and analytics are already becoming a part of the main stage of enterprise technology solutions. You just have to see the business versions of Google Drive and Dropbox to see that. In fact, Constellation Research found that cloud data sources have grown over 450% since May 2014.

However, on-premises vendors are also seeing huge jumps in popularity (as much as 210% since last year). For example, Tableau Online has become its vendor’s quickest growing software. In addition, Amazon Redshift, Google Analytics, Google BigQuery and Salesforce (respectively) have also seen huge jumps in growth.

Clearly, both on- and off-premises analytics solutions that have the capability of connecting to the cloud are becoming highly desired by businesses in all industries. Why? After interviewing over 50 companies, here’s IIA Director and Harvard professor Tom Davenport found:

  • Cloud-based analytics is cheap. “Virtually every large company I interviewed, however, is employing big data technologies not to replace existing architectures, but to augment them.” Rather than start from scratch, companies are able to “repurpose” existing IT infrastructure and reduce their overall BI costs.
  • Big data is fast. Though they can handle immense quantities of data, most cloud analytics products are extremely quick. This enables business managers to make fast, smart decisions.
  • New products and services keep on coming. Big data analytics software is also appealing to businesses because they continually come out with updated products and services. This allows companies to continually advance their BI capabilities without much investment in entirely new hardware.

Where do you go from here? With cloud computing, anything is possible. Sure, there is room for cloud computing services to improve, but with constant updates these solutions are becoming secure, faster, cheaper and more capable of providing you and your business with the space you need to run your business.

To learn more about Ad Victoriam’s – a leading technology consulting firm based out of Atlanta, GA – we invite you to browse our website and contact us to find out how we can help your company streamline your cloud-based technology and processes.

Continue browsing our blog for more insights into making your enterprise technology work for you.