The landscape of digital is a demanding one. The last 5 years has seen some of the most fundamental shifts in how organisations are changing to meet the needs, demands and opportunities presented in this digital age. Government has led the way in embracing agile methodologies and open source technology; retail continues to push the boundaries of multi-channel reach and integration; and financial services innovate with new experiences powered by customer data.
There are more channels, complex devices, higher expectations and faster lead times but organisations are often working within established structures and are reliant on old technology. At 20 years old even Amazon now has to deal with legacy systems, and digital native ASOS has announced a platforming programme on an universal scale. In this context, the challenges facing M&S at 125 years old or the NHS at 70 are thrown into relief, underwriting the need for eco-system thinking when it comes to digital transformation. It’s no longer enough to focus on the technology alone, or to put the customer at the heart if there isn’t also a strategy and organisational structure that embraces digital rather than reacting to it. Alongside an approach to channels that reflects both customer propensity and commercial viability organisations need an internal culture that is educated, engaged and empowered. Taking an eco-system view of digital transformation allows us to consider interdependencies as well as cause and effect.
By melding the expectations of an increasingly demanding public with the capabilities of the organisations that seek to satisfy them, we can define the key characteristics of the digitally mature organisation. Our 2015 digital manifesto details these characteristics.
Digital Manifesto 2015
1. A vision needs a strategy and a strategy needs a plan. Operationally, digital is not at business as usual level yet.
2. In the digital technology sweet shop the best strategies define what you don’t do, as much as what you do. Be brave enough to focus.
3. How you’re organised is less important than how you operate, and getting the culture right is essential.
4. Digital cultural maturity requires action as well as vision and organisations must recruit and train non-digital roles to succeed in the digital world.
5. Adopting agile methodologies can deliver benefits to both process and outcome but they must be aligned to other elements of the eco-system.
6. Technology as an enabler of digital is better understood and more appreciated than ever. But there is still work to be done in delivering efficiencies and effectiveness, as well as future capability.
7. Deliver excellence in a few channels rather than being ok in all of them.
8. New metrics are required to measure customers in terms of journeys, lifetime value or cost-per-interaction, and delivering these will require significant change and take time.
9. Customer-centricity needs to be delivered in balance with the wider eco-system. If your organisation isn’t aligned to address customer needs, then you won’t.
10. Understanding customer needs and motivations augments rather than replaces testing. The digitally mature organisation will ask what the customer wants and validate that the end result is what they need.
Does this year’s digital manifesto fairly represent digital maturity? Is there anything else you’d add to the list? Do you think something on here is undeserving of its place in our top 10 attributes? Get in touch if you have any comments, I’d like to know what you think.
You can read more about the launch of DMI 2015: Stop thinking silos, start thinking eco-systems here as well as download a full copy of the report.