The one constant of change is that its always for someone elseexcept it’s not.

Today’s  customers demand to be recognized across every channel, whether online or offline. They don’t care about which part of the company they are dealing with, to them, there’s only one brand.  Yet, companies continue to provide a disconnected customer experience, with sales, service and marketing each working to engage the audience on their own, without coordinating their efforts. It makes customers frustrated, disengaged and disloyal. In NewVoiceMedia’s 2018 “Serial Switchers” report,  it was revealed that poor customer service costs businesses more than $75 billion a year.

The convergence of technology and behavior is only accelerating, and the butterfly effect it causes is transformative and disruptive. Markets are shifting to such extent that they open the door to innovation with new products, services and ways of doing business becoming the norm as a result.

All  of this is (and has been) playing out at the expense or demise of those who continue down a path of business as usual. The need to change is no longer something for everyone else; it is the first step toward one of the most important movements in business evolution today…digital transformation.

How to Conquer Successful Digital Transformation

My colleague Jaimy Szymanski and I have led several research studies on the subject , including the annual State of Digital Transformation report. As part of this work, we’ve interviewed many executives who are leading transformation to document the challenges they face, the opportunities they uncover and more so, what it is they do to navigate the complexities of uncertainty, bureaucracy, politics, skepticism, fear, etc., to make progress.

Along  the way, we’ve observed a series of patterns that help executives make the case for change, earn support and also the little (and sometimes big) steps that lead to digital transformation.

Change always starts with one step and more often than not, I found that zeroing in on the digital customer experience uncovers areas of immediate opportunities to learn, experiment and eliminate existing hurdles and points of friction in the customer journey.

Digital Transformation Best Practices: The OPPOSITE Framework

Altimeter’s “OPPOSITE” framework is an acronym that represents the best practices guiding transformation efforts around the digital customer experience:

1. Orientation:

Establish a new perspective to drive meaningful change. Digital transformation requires organization-wide buy-in, so emphasize the benefits you’ll experience by moving to digital. This will help shift perspectives and get everyone on board.

2. People:

Think about what your customer values, expectations and behaviors are. When beginning your digital transformation, keep these in mind and make sure you keep your customers your priority.

3. Processes:

Prior to embarking on digital transformation, assess your current operational infrastructure and update (or revamp) technologies, processes and policies to support change.

4. Objectives:

Define the purpose of digital transformation, aligning stakeholders (and shareholders) around the new vision and roadmap. It can be helpful to set concrete goals for your digital transformation, like percentage of revenue increase or timelines for implementation.

5. Structure:

Form a dedicated digital experience team with their roles, responsibilities, objectives, and accountabilities clearly defined. This will help keep the transformation on track.

6. Insights & Intent:

Gather data and apply insights toward strategy to guide digital evolution.

7. Technology:

Re-evaluate front and back-end systems for a seamless, integrated and native customer and, ultimately, employee experience.

8. Execution:

Implement, learn and adapt to steer ongoing digital transformation and customer experience work.

Final Thoughts

For companies looking to jumpstart their digital transformation efforts, this report provides a blueprint for stakeholders across the organization to come together, create a shared vision and take the first steps towards thriving in the new digital reality. Change starts with you.

Learn more about how to strategize and execute a successful digital transformation.