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Six factors for successful digital transformation

Digital transformation is a varied term, meaning different thigs to different companies: whether this is about more advanced technologies in general, or the specific applications of technology, such as developing a customer focus or adopting a data driven approach.

Based on “Fujitsu Future Insights Global Digital Transformation Survey Report 2018”, the research was conducted in the following counties: Australia, Canada, China, Finland, France, Germany, Indonesia Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Thailand, UK and US, focusing on C-level executives.

In a companion article, the key headlines from the survey are examined (see: “The global state of digital transformation: Survey”). Here the six digital transformation success factors, drawn out from the survey’s analysis, are outlined.

The six factors from the Fujitsu survey were each highlighted as determinants underpinning the success of digital transformation projects. The factors are: Leadership, People, Agility, Business Integration, Ecosystem and Value from Data. Fujitsu summarizes these as the “organizational capabilities” that must be reinforced by senior managers so that successful delivery of digital transformation, both as individual projects and for the overall strategy, can be delivered.

With the six factors, the survey draws on a physiological analogy, in stating: “these six key factors are like muscles. The stronger your ‘digital muscles,’ the greater the chance of success through digital transformation.”

In terms of leadership, this is seen as something that needs to rest with the CEO. With the people factor, having the right skills to deliver digital transformation is marked as essential. In terms of the ecosystem, partnership working is called out. Here it is unlikely that any company can deliver all of the required technological aspects of digital transformation from within. Companies which had delivered outcomes placed the highest importance on technology partner, followed by their customers. In particular, online companies value ecosystem partners, including startups, companies from different industries or consortiums, to a much greater degree than traditional companies.

In relation, business integration is critical. This concerns successfully integrating technology into all areas of the business. With the next factor, drawing value from data. This is about good data analysis, drawing meaningful business intelligence from the right type of data. In relation, data security is also an important factor. The final factor is agility, which concerns having a supporting culture. Part of this culture involves having “an appetite for design culture.”

Written By

Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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