At the Pulse of Time – the Evolutionizer Trend Radar
The Corona crisis has accelerated the digital transformation, which will change the organization and value chain of many companies and industries short and medium term. Now is the time to drive digital transformation effective and sustainable, because only a holistic approach leads to success.
We summarized some current trend topics for you:
With the shutdown, customers were forced to do things online for which they had not previously used digital channels¹. They quickly adapted to the new situation and familiarized themselves with digital technologies, e.g. sports and further education courses used digitally and increasingly ordered online. This is now becoming the new norm.
Keeping these new consumer and customer needs in mind will be a success factor for companies. It will therefore become even more relevant for them in the future to know the needs, wishes and challenges of their customers, to use this information and provide them with relevant offers.
The recent McKinsey study confirms that almost all organizations (established companies and start-ups as well) are digitizing their business models - as a direct result of Corona's impact on consumer behavior. Nevertheless, the changed circumstances of recent months have forced companies to completely change their business model in some cases.
In times when future forecasts are becoming increasingly short-lived, companies are once again focusing more intensively on their operating business with sharpened awareness. This includes shorter intervals, in some cases on a daily basis, for monitoring the operating business with a view to potential disruptive factors in order to be able to react quickly to changes. Even small undesirable developments can currently endanger the future of the company. Decision-makers today must react faster than ever before. It is therefore advisable to establish a pragmatic and effective solution for the gathering, bundling and assessment of potential disruptions and risks directly from the "front-line" in the organization at short notice. The business-critical processes must be sensible to these disruptions and designed in such a way that the significance of the disruptions can be recognized immediately and, if they occur, a rapid reaction is possible.
Data analysis with the help of Artificial Intelligence (AI) is becoming a central competitive factor. AI technologies such as Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Machine Learning (ML) have been used by particularly innovative companies for some time. Anyone who has not yet invested in this area should tackle this as soon as possible. These analysis and evaluation methods are indispensable for improving real-time decisions and making them based on facts.
Make things in your company more efficient! Data-driven, smart analysis tools provide valuable information about the rapidly changing needs of customers. They make a valuable contribution to showing in real-time and on a factual basis which challenges customers are most likely to face and which solutions they need now and in the future.
The decentralized relocation of the work of (almost) all employees into home offices and the changed needs for software systems require a new form of cooperation - between management, business units, IT, etc. In addition, new roles in the company are needed to close the gap between the individual units. In order to successfully master this cultural change in the company, it is crucial that this change is exemplified and accompanied by the management level itself. Only in this way can employees find their way around their new roles and the sometimes new tasks and remain motivated. The cultural change towards a "digital mindset" and the agile cooperation of all employees contributes just as much to the success of the company as the digital technologies themselves. This task cannot be delegated to the IT department. It is the task of top management.
Due to the changed circumstances of the past few months, companies have been forced to digitize their processes and entire business models². In order to find out what the path to the "digitally transformed enterprise" looks like, it is necessary to gain clarity on 2 topics:
The gap describes the path. Clarity about how much time we have for the digital transformation is another criterion for success.
From a functional point of view, the first point of contact should be customer needs. These must be critically reviewed, reassessed and individual areas or even the entire business model must be realigned accordingly. Customer data, which is already available in thousands of files, is valuable but today is in fact not or not sufficiently used for questions of the right segmentation, the analysis of buying behavior or for a better understanding of the change in customer needs. With modern methods of advanced statistics, we are already getting quite far, the available technologies from machine learning open the gates for a new quality level of "market intelligence".
A holistic approach is decisive for success: It is useless for the company if a well-founded digital strategy is developed, appropriate measures are derived from it and a cultural change is intended, but implementation is too hesitant and the question of the right structure is left out. Drive the change consistently and actively participate in shaping it as a role model. Being aware of the digital maturity level of your organization as well as the needs on the market side and depending on the industry and its dynamics, there are only a few grey areas in this central cross-sectional topic: Either you approach it with full power or you leave it ...
¹ McKinsey & Company, July 2020: Elevating customer experience excellence in the next normal
² Boston Consulting Group, May 2020: Is Your Technology Ready for the New Digital Reality?