As a business owner or manager, you have probably noticed the phrase Digital Transformation doing the rounds. But what does it actually mean and how easy is it to introduce to your organisation?
Put simply, digital transformation is using technology and software to make changes to processes that improve your business’s daily function. These changes may be as simple as using a database to store and access business activity rather than spreadsheets, or perhaps a new customer facing website.
There are many benefits to taking the plunge, but they will depend on how much change is made as well as your current processes.
As a rule, digital change makes available benefits such as up to date information (data isn’t sitting in someone's inbox for days - it is uploaded directly to a database), improved efficiency, fewer errors,cost savings, improved customer service and a competitive edge. Even making employees happier as they aren’t spending lots of time on menial tasks.
Staff need or want to work from home? For whatever reason, enabling remote working can be the difference between having to stop work, it taking far longer or things getting done as normal. Your digital transformation along with cloud based solutions will help achieve this, not only for your employees benefit but also for your customers.
Real transformation will require cultural change within your business; gone are the days where everything is recorded on spreadsheets and information sent via email. Here are the days of easy access for all to information that is accurate and up to date.
Where to start?
To begin your changes, you need to produce a strategy. This should involve research, analysis and planning stages. Go through each of your task areas and prioritise them in terms of time they take or how many errors they incur. It is often difficult to know where improvements can be made if you are not sure of the technology and processes that are possible.
If this is the case then it is often a good idea to get a software and technology audit done. They don’t have to be expensive, but are value for money if they don’t take up your time and yield better results.
Either way, once you know what you need to improve and have an idea how, you can speak to a software company about your needs.
A good provider will manage all of the build and implementation - If you choose a bespoke software developer like Smashed Crab Software, they will build the software around your requirements and deliver it, ready to go when it is complete. You won’t need to spend days configuring it for your needs, all of this will be done for you.
An example of change
If your business uses diaries (paper or on your email account) and white boards to perform Project Management or Task Management then a change to software will make the whole process quicker and more accurate.
Each member of your team could have their own login, with only their or their departments information visible. Pop up reminders could ensure you don’t miss important tasks, reducing delays and unhappy customers.
Managers can see who is doing what and when tasks are scheduled for completion. If you deliver to, or have reps visiting customers - route planning can be compiled meaning reduced wastage of fuel and the saving time by calculating the most economical route.
Of course, task management software is just one example, there are many types of software that can be introduced into businesses to improve how they operate. CRM, Stock Management and Quote Management being just a few that Smashed Crab Software can tailor to your needs.