Idwell Approach to Digital Transformation

A digital transformation can support a more efficient organization or help reach customers in markets currently out-of-bounds. It can make a company more fit-for-purpose. Aspects of digital transformation will be helpful to almost all organizations. It is not the case though that every organization has to move forward on the path towards becoming fully digital. It might be that a digital approach is not needed in the primary processes. It might only be relevant in the support-side of the organization and help to keep the focus on the core work.

Idwell sees digital transformation as a voyage of discovery. There are rumors of riches and gains to be made in lands far away. Underway there are all kinds of possible dangers to be dealt with. Well prepared it will be much easier. And not all fabled monsters are real.

Some organizations are already in a situation that they can make this voyage mostly on their own. They might need an experienced guide to pilot them through some of the more treacherous parts. For other organizations it might be an expedition they embark on for the first time. They need help with creating the right team and procuring the best systems to navigate the dark waters of technology. Fears of the unknown and the unfamiliar have to be converted into courage to move forward. The right tools and the right partners are important.

From our perspective four main steps can be identified in accomplishing digital transformation: discover, organize, direct, improve. The first three steps are mainly about the program of digital transformation when a revolution is needed: a major overhaul of the organization to prepare them becoming digital. The last step is about evolution: to keep going forward and to keep learning and developing. When the organization is as digital as they need to be, then adopting new technology and innovation is all business as usual.

According to research by Harvard professor Jon Kotter, the first step of any successful change initiative is the establishment of a ‘sense of urgency’. In order for a change to happen a compelling reason to change is needed. It is important to get the reason right and to also make clear what the direction of the initiative is. The change initiative has to make sense in solving the crisis that has been identified.

In our analogy of a voyage of discovery the first step it is to make clear that going on the voyage Is inevitable and the best option available. There is no better way for the organization to move forward and to stay relevant. What is needed is a good assessment of the situation the organization is in as well as a strong narrative of the options available. The future are distant lands of opportunity and riches. A map is needed to show those lands and their potential value. The map also will show different routes, the risks that can be encountered as well as good places to pause and recoup.

Idwell helps organizations to establish the need for digital transformation and the possible choices in solutions. We will provide guidance in setting up successful programs for digital transformation. To help to take the first step.

Before a company can embark on the digital transformation expedition a team needs to be put together, tools have to be put in place and a course needs to be set. In other words, the digital transformation needs an organization. This organization is about designing and empowering the expedition to reach the best destination as well es being able to deal with all encounters on the way. Some challenges can be dealt with from the start and for others the organization can be prepared.

Idwell provides guidance in creating the design of the organization and help in training the teams. Idwell can also provide support in selecting solutions and technology and in finding the right partners. It is possible to review existing plans, organizational designs and sourcing strategies and provide feedback on possible issues and on potential improvements. There are several business simulations available that can help prepare the team before they embark.

When the organization is ready the voyage can begin. During the expedition the organization will run into different kinds of challenges that needs to be address. This will bring the training into practice and the team will improve in dealing with problems and risks. It might be advised to start with an experienced navigator at the wheel to set the course. Until the organization is ready to take over the helm and can navigate on their own.

Idwell can provide execution power by taking on program or interim management roles in the change initiative.

When the expedition is fully on its way and the team knows what is expected and what to do then there is no reason to stop when the planned destination is reached. There is more to discover and there will always be new distant lands at the horizon. Taking in provisions, making repairs, recruiting new team mates and be on the way again.

A digital organization is one that will always be adopting, adapting and improving. Constant experimentation and continuous improvement requires an active role of both management and workers. Idwell can provide guidance and training for companies on performing as a digital organization.