Words by: Clare Hanrahan, SO SME Acquisition Manager Marketing, Virgin Media Business.
Through my line of work I constantly hear sound bites about digital transformation. Everyone knows that embracing digital is important in order to grow and develop as a business, but what does digital transformation actually mean and what does it look like?
From my experience it means different things to different types of organisations. However, generally I would define it as integrating digital technology into all areas of your business with the end goal of enhancing your business’ customer and employee experience.
But back to how it can differ…
An example I came across recently is with a small family run business, Gardinia Windows. Their team spent their days frustrated with how long it took them to upload product images and descriptions to their e-commerce platform. This not only disgruntled them as employees, but also meant they were spending a lot of their time focusing on the website rather than engaging with their customers (therefore having a detrimental impact on their customer journey). Once they embarked on a digital transformation journey, they were able to become truly customer centric internally and externally as it now takes seconds rather than hours to upload to their website. They now have an online reviewing system which means they are embracing “word of mouth” marketing, and also means they have now become a global business rather than local, again due to their ecommerce capability.
Then we look at a larger company – Approved Food. This SME fundamentally relies on instantaneous transactions being an online ecommerce business selling perfectly good – but nearly out of date – food. Not only this but the food is stored in a warehouse the size of a football pitch so obviously the database needs to be sharp and regularly updated to make it easy for employers to source the orders made online. If they were to have any downtime of up to 5 days – their business would fail. As a result, their digital transformation focused on resilience and speed of connectivity. They also wanted to ensure that the systems continued to work like clockwork even when employees were at home. This is a win win – as it enables flexibility within the workforce as well as ensuring the customer journey is never impacted (I know I personally love being able to work from home from time to time!)
So whatever your ambitions are as a business, whether it be to grow or even to start up, digital transformation should be a real focus within your business strategy. And it doesn’t even need to be hard. A simple change of connectivity can really lay the foundations for your digital journey. It will then enable you to really add value to your business whether it be through cloud applications to enhance employee productivity, or security to ensure you’re protected at all times which has never been so important post GDPR. I personally believe it has never been so important to stay ahead of the digital curve in this day and age.
Why not see where you are on your digital transformation journey? Virgin Media Business have put together a short and quick test for you to take part in – so why not grab a coffee and take 5 minutes out of your day to complete it. You will then receive a full report which will give you some insider knowledge tailored to your business.