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Reimagining Digital Transformation

The pandemic period has hit companies hard, but also reignited their desire for a more connected and efficient future

The role of digital transformation has undergone its own ‘transformation’ in recent months, with businesses embarking on a 2020 journey from ‘imagination’, to ‘survival’, to – now – ‘reimagining’.

We at Match reported in November last year how many companies were opting for phased digital adoption in siloed areas of their businesses, rather than embracing a much more tailored, structured, considered and sustainable transformation.

Those who failed to take heed, have sadly found out why we were so urgent with our message since then.

 

Imagination

In essence, we called for reinvention. For change agendas to fully embrace digitisation in every strand of a business; in a joined and consistent manner. For it to be instigated at boardroom level, guided by trusted IT expertise, and often outsourced to those who could manage this journey effectively.

“Essentially, if organisations don’t begin looking at digital as an entire breathing organism then they won’t be able to transform,” James Fowler, Match Performance Director said at the time. “By introducing one digital tool as a lone organ, the wider organism won’t live. Constructing and nurturing an entire digital anatomy is the way to move forward.”

In a perfect world, such transformations would have been implemented some time ago, to provide the level of agility, robustness and stability that could stand up to unforeseen crises or industry downturns.

Like, for instance, one caused by a global pandemic.

 

Survival

However, far too few took imagination any further than that. Just ideas and concepts. And soon they were thrown into COVID-fuelled turmoil without the proper equipment to cope.

2020 has inevitably had a detrimental impact on a large swathe of enterprises, and those without a consistent and reliable digital infrastructure will have faced bigger challenges than most.

The additional irony to compound many organisations’ struggles, is the intense pressure that’s been put on said infrastructures, as businesses were forced to function remotely, as individual entities. The ability to remain operational, efficient, secure and able suddenly boiled down to a digital skill set that we had been championing for years, but that so many had overlooked.

 

Reimagining

Every cloud has a silver lining, however…

A positive fallout from this trying time has been the exposure (forced or otherwise) to digital’s potential, and the negative upshots should it be neglected.

Organisations have finally been made painfully aware of the importance of a comprehensive and conjoined network that can withstand challenges at the worst of times, and generate utmost efficiency, quality and profits in more lucrative periods.

This realisation has arrived simultaneous to additional rethinks about other strands of their businesses, too. What’s important? What are we good at? Where do we need to find improvement? What needs to be prioritised? How agile are we to the ecosystem around us?

And, most significantly, how can digital drive optimum performance to achieve the resultant strategies from those pressure points?

That is where we come in, as a company that has been guiding businesses through their change agendas and HR strategies for many years now.

By embracing the power of digital ourselves, AI and data-driven processes ensure that decisions are made off the back of experience and scenarios far too vast for any human to filter manually.

We are better placed than ever to navigate what organisations are reimagining, from the perspective of true digital transformation.

 

Portfolio prioritisation

A key stage of companies’ pending journey revolves around deciding what is most important. Digital transformation needs to encapsulate and reflect who you are as a business. So, firstly, companies need to work out what that looks like, post-COVID.

It’s unlikely to look the same as it did before the pandemic hit, as companies’ overheads may have shrunk, scope will be reduced, their internal structures may have been altered, many will continue to leverage remote and flexi working longer-term, and the whole notion of the ‘office’ is likely to have changed.

So, job one actually has nothing to do with technology at all. It’s to reprioritise change agendas and the overall change portfolio, so that resultant digital strategy feeds into that new environment.

By assessing true capability at this present time, to forecast how that capability is likely to evolve moving forward, and to then build an infrastructure that gets the best out of that pathway, will ensure a much more sustainable and connected operation.

To this end, as reported as early as May, we at Match have been working with countless organisations this spring and summer, to formulate more strategic and achievable prioritisation plans that embed capability into change agendas. These set the tone for the digital transformations that have since followed.

 

It’s all about the people

Our clients span a wide range of sectors; aiding retail’s migration to online portals, logistics firms remaining operational and connected in a disconnected time, banking’s modernisation to speedier and more accessible platforms, and many more.

A consistent consideration, and priority, in nearly every conversation is their people.

People in the form of customers whose expectations often outpace internal transformation. And, of course, people in the form of employees who have been the frontline subjects of the coronavirus game.

James reflected on the latter point back in May, puling upon Match’s 20-plus years of helping organisations hire to a degree of unparalleled accuracy and success.

“Amid the iterative, incremental nature of agile, uncertainty is a certainty,” he said. “And thus, it’s not surprising that businesses are now looking to try out innovative solutions in order to shake off traditional, constraining staffing models; especially in a ‘millennial’ era famous for the pursuit of flexibility and immediate fulfilment.”

In the same way that portfolio prioritisation is a precursor to the success of digital transformation, so too is the level of talent agility your business should be striving for. If your resultant structure doesn’t get the best out of your personnel, you’re either heading down the wrong digitisation path, or you’ve hired the wrong people.

The two must synchronise in harmony in order to be successful. And thankfully, we offer complete digital guidance to merge and optimise both perspectives.

 

A true transformation

As we enter and act upon the reimagining phase of this odd year, there is a lot to reflect upon. The earlier ‘survival’ period will have set many businesses back, and the majority are now fully aware that investments and expenditures, now, can save them far more in the long run – both in resisting adversity, and just generally as a more nimble and productive outfit.

However, the window of opportunity may well be short, and so quick do we often forget times of trouble when life smooth’s out again. It’s vital that these reimaginations are converted into tangible action; beginning with prioritisation plans and structure strategies, before embarking on this long overdue digital transformation.

We at Match have never been busier as a result. The conversations we’re having compared to our first report on digital transformation last year have clearly evolved, and that’s a great sign.

But it’s just the beginning. Access to our validated, tried and tested talent pools ensures a bespoke and flexible resource model that addresses change, agility and transformation as one of the same. A seamless and conjoined notion that businesses need to strive for ultimately.

Just because you’ve faced a difficult obstacle this year, doesn’t mean that the aftermath will be simple by comparison. And it’s for this reason that we urge organisations to let us reimagine with you.

Whatever your challenge is, what the past few months has done to your business, and what stage you’re at, we are here to help you fill in the gaps of your infrastructure, to achieve significant returns on investment, and to finally usher in a true transformation.

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A global consulting firm, who bring our clients change ambitions to life. If we can't add value we won't engage and will only stay as long as we're needed. We deliver capability in a way that others cannot, through the aggregation of experience, data and a peerless network . And, we love doing it. Get in touch if you want to hear more.

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