Digital transformation (DT) is the process of integration of digital technology into all areas of a business to create new — or modify existing — business processes and customer experiences to meet changing business and market requirements. It's also a cultural change that requires organizations to continually challenge the status quo, experiment, and get comfortable with failure. It is important not to confuse Digital Transformation with investing in technology or digitalizing paper archives.

The revolution of Digital Transformation involves every aspect of modern society both public and private sectors.

It is essential to governments, as they have to keep up with the rapid changes through more efficient delivery of services and for the creation of the so-called “digital cities”. It is really urgent for industry, service companies, and so on as if they don’t transform themselves they have a high risk of extinction in a high competitive digitized economy.

While in the public sector the government should initiate and propel Digital Transformation, in the private sector instead this is up to CEO, who should be ready to explain to the board the power of digital technology applied to every aspect of the organization, especially in term of increasing in revenue.

Digital Transformation is a key factor of success to bring a traditional company to competitive company in a digitized economy.

CEO could adopt the follow approach:

  1. Leverage insiders. They have an intimate knowledge about what works and what doesn’t in their daily activity.
  2. Analyse customer experience from the outside. The goal of digital transformation is to improve customer satisfaction.
  3. Involve employees. They are an important key for the success of Digital Transformation. For this reason they mustn’t feel the fear of being replaced. On the contrary need to emphasize them that Digital Transformation is an opportunity to upgrade their expertise to suit the marketplace of the future.
  4. Analyse the present model of business, in particular realize which is the “core business” and what isn’t and therefore can be externalized.
  5. Define the concrete goals of the transformation: speed, innovation, high level of customer care but only in the direction of consolidating and increasing the core business.
  1. Elaborate a new model of business with the new technology (Cloud computing, Big Data, IoT, AI) and concrete goals in mind and using as reference the present one.
  2. decide which digital tools one should adopt
  3. elaborate a plan for employee training
  4. Implement the Digital Transformation based on new in theory working model of business step-by-step. It works better than all-or-nothing approach because after every step you can check and verify if you going to go in the right direction.

CYBERSECURITY IS A TOP PRIORITY

During the process of Digital Transformation a company must be protected by cyberattack which can stop the process or the company must fail by losing reputation with an impact on its core business. Cybersecurity must grow in parallel with the increasing digitalization of work processes. So to keep safe the constant Digital Transformation it is necessary to boost cybersecurity by integrating AI and ML technologies into security solutions and add regulations for data privacy and protection.

Cyber-attacks, espionage, sabotage and data theft are the major risk to business activities, so security and trust are essential for a successful digital transformation.

The Digital Transformation increases the attack surface because:

  • every company is becoming a data company;
  • employees have ubiquitous access to applications and data for more productivity;
  • customers use digital interaction.

So investing in cybersecurity means:

  • protecting data that are important for strategic advantage;
  • increasing and defending the reputation of the company;
  • avoiding money loss and the extinction of the company.

Cybersecurity minimizes the risk of a fail in the Digital Transformation and this is a must for the survival of transformed company.

References

[01] Thomas M. Siebel “Digital Transformation – Survive and Thrive in an Era of Mass Extinction”, RosettaBooks, New York 2019;

[02] Behnam Tabrizi, Ed Lam, Kirk Girard, and Vernon Irvin, “Digital Transformation is not about technology”, Harvard Business Review, 2021