Since the pandemic has made the business world speed up significantly, the total worth of the transformation spending market keeps increasing. In fact, recent estimations speak of a one trillion dollars increase during the 2020-2023 period. Companies that want to beat their competition and stay in the game are spending vast amounts of money on new technologies to significantly improve their business . That’s why some people are talking about “digital acceleration.”
The term digital acceleration is often mistakenly used as a synonym of the term digital transformation. These terms refer to quite similar things and share the same goal of improving the company’s workflow and productivity using modern technology to match growing consumer demands, but they are not the same.
DT vs. DA
Digital transformation refers to the new technologies introduced into a company’s working process to facilitate contemporary business. In contrast, digital acceleration refers to the way of thinking about how the industry can benefit from such modern solutions.
Digital acceleration can only exist alongside digital transformation.
If a company decides to focus on speed and use the data-driven approach during a transformation project either due to competition pressure or increased customer demands, that is called digital acceleration.
So, digital transformation would mean adopting modern technologies. Digital acceleration would represent the ongoing process of implementing different digital transformation projects into the working process and using the data-driven approach to analyze the benefits they bring to the business. Therefore, digital acceleration makes companies stay in touch with the latest tech trends.
Requirements for digital acceleration
A company has to accept a new way of thinking and working as a part of its culture, having people and roles with the specific responsibility of following global technological trends.
A company can’t have a complex IT landscape. It needs to be visible and effective because an urgent need for digital transformation in specific business processes may arise at any point.
Budget is an important issue here since implementing digital acceleration into the company working process is costly at the beginning. Still, it becomes easier to move forward with it as soon as it gets set up.
Companies should have project managers with previous experience in managing business-critical projects. If there aren’t any, the company should train the current managers or employ new ones.
The ultimate formula for successful implementation of DA
Evaluate before planning:
Perform deep data analysis to fully understand the current situation, the digital state of the company and its needs. Maybe there is an existing strategy already in place.
It’s essential to take enough time to review all data before adopting a digital acceleration strategy. Challenge everything, ask questions and ensure all is as it should be. Check the technology, the plan, the number of team members, and their knowledge and expertise level.
Make a plan:
Create a project roadmap corresponding to the company’s needs and preferences, including all the crucial elements.
Make sure you also create a timeline of events, providing everybody working on the project with crucial information regarding deadlines, objectives, separate stages, and other relevant details.
Decide if you want to start with just one department or the whole company at once. It’s always best to start small and in highly-impactful areas that can provide a quicker ROI.
Allow employees to adapt to the change: Answer the what, why, and how questions, reducing employee resistance to the change. Provide the employees with proper training and tools, thus allowing them to assume their place in the implementation process.
Go one step at a time: Make your progress measurable by dividing goals into objectives. Instead of wanting everything done immediately and expecting full implementation to occur as soon as the process starts, start with a small step. By implementing a new communication channel, for example, there will be an instant improvement in productivity, and employees will get used to minor but regular enhancements.
Feel free to slow down: Even though digital acceleration aims to speed things up, it doesn’t mean everything should be done in a rush. On the contrary, everything should be done according to the original plan. Just remember that some flexibility is allowed and welcomed, and that technology should be implemented quickly but not too quickly.
Observe, monitor, and enhance:
Useful tools measure the rate of digital acceleration. Don’t expect everything to run smoothly right away.
Collect data and use it to improve the implementation process. Ask employees for feedback through surveys, and monitor data such as software usage statistics and employee productivity metrics to get the most helpful information.
If you are unsatisfied with the results, stop, reevaluate and learn from previous mistakes. Adjust the plan, improve, and start again.
Review and reinforce:
After completing the implementation process, review the results, see if the goals and objectives were reached, and notice all the things that could have been done better.
This is the point for determining the process’s effectiveness and learning an important lesson for future projects.
Main areas of business value
It’s a fact that companies that underwent digital transformation and acceleration have achieved higher revenue than other companies from the same industry which didn’t.
Adopting and implementing new technology has a positive impact on customer interaction. When the communication with customers improves, they will be happier and remain loyal.
Companies with no problems adopting new technologies or working processes are usually tech-savvy or digitally mature. These companies had no problems switching to remote work either.
What can influence digital acceleration?
It is essential for agility, UX, and cybersecurity, so many companies are planning to increase their cloud usage, especially since it has the highest return on investment potential.
The point of automation is to reduce human input to a minimum, thus making processes more efficient.
The pandemic has accelerated businesses worldwide. Some of them have experienced incredible growth, while others went bankrupt. Continuous growth is expected in gaming, streaming, air transport, remote working software, robotics, VR, and other emerging technologies.
Since the pandemic’s beginning and with the rise in numbers of remote-working companies, cybersecurity has become an increasingly important field. Companies are faced with a significant increase in security threats.
Digital innovation and disruption
Technological development brings new products and services. Leading companies place innovative products and services on the market to increase profits, beat the competition, and disrupt it. Sometimes even whole industries get disrupted.
Even though AI is still at a very early stage, we know that it will continue to revolutionize the future of the business world.
Along with the changes in customer demand, we can also expect changes in customer behavior, spending habits, and other factors. The most common influences on customer demand are natural changes, such as generational changes and modernization. Then there’s technological advancement, and some major global events such as natural disasters, pandemics, etc.
Advanced data analytics
Since almost half of the data collected is unused, companies have started reviewing how they handle data. There are four types of data: descriptive, diagnostic, predictive, and prescriptive.
The Internet of Things connects the sensors and everyday devices to the internet, resulting in the automation of certain functions, better insights, and a long etcetera.
Companies must adopt new technologies and processes/systems. Digital transformation, as well as digital acceleration, are not possible without digital adoption.
The pandemic has shifted the world to remote work, which changed people’s habits and uncovered all the benefits of remote work. The results are the fast adoption of new technologies and processes that support this new way of working.
Company culture is very important
Company culture affects all parts and fields of a company, from performance to resilience.
If a company is generally open to new ideas and innovations, the employees should accept organizational changes with greater ease.
Employees used to working in the digital environment won’t have any trouble accepting new tools and technologies.
Companies that are used to incorporating data in their daily operations will most likely continue to do so during the implementation process.
Digital acceleration requires a lot of learning, so it works best in companies that promote a pro-learning culture.
Even though we can’t know for sure what the future holds, we can be confident that the future world will be digital.
Companies should do their best to implement new technology and business strategies as soon as possible because, as it seems from this standpoint, the digital world of tomorrow might come much sooner than we think.