Rory Yu Head of Digital Solutions

Rory leads the solution engagement transformation at JOS. With his 27 years of IT experiences, primarily serving the Financial Services Sector and working at reputable large global companies, Rory had developed solid proven IT foundation to support end-to-end full IT functions for large enterprises. On top of his IT exposure, Rory had also gained in-depth Banking business knowledge with wide spectrum of domain familiarity from the products, services to solutions.

Key Takeaways
Get the Board backing
Get the user buy-in
Start small
Do not do it alone
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March 06, 2018
Enterprise Applications
Digital Transformation 101: 4 ways to get it right

Digital transformation is about organizational change. But middle managers and frontline staff may not appreciate the positive impacts that may improve other parts of your firm. In many cases, they tend to see it as a threat, and may resist change.

Below are four ways you can address these challenges and put your digital transformation efforts on the right track:

Get the Board backing

A strong backing of the executive management team and the Board says a lot to middle managers and frontline staff.

First, Board-level endorsement shows that the firm is serious about digital transformation. Many IT project flounder because many users feel that their effort to learn and change will be all for nothing. But it should not be all just "sticks". Add the "carrot" by putting in place a recognition or reward system that encourages staff to support digital transformation.

In addition, strong Board backing shows a firm's customers that the management is forward looking and is embracing change. After all, no one likes to bet on a firm that may become irrelevant or sidelined by new competition.

Get the user buy-in

Board backing can help to start digital transformation on their right footing, but it is user buy-in that make each initiative successful.

The problem is that digital transformation is about change and change makes many users uncomfortable. While the benefits are clear-better efficiency, optimized processes, and business flexibility for a dynamic market-users may not be immediately appreciate them. Some may even think that it is a corporate attempt to make them redundant.

This is why efforts to drive user buy-in are vital. Getting them involved in the planning and testing phase is a good step in the right direction. After all, they are the ones who are most familiar with what is occurring at the business frontlines or on the manufacturing floor. They can advise on the practicality of key initiatives, co-develop parts of the initiative, and may even offer better suggestions that the proposed ones. You will be surprised how well digital transformation works when users feel they are part of it.

Start small

Digital transformation is a journey-not a project. With innovation and new technological advances altering market dynamics, it is vital for firms to constantly transform themselves.

But budgeting for digital transformation is difficult. Most procurement processes are based on forecasting and planning over fixed timelines. Continuous change does not fit in easily. Besides, no Board will approve the budget for an endless project-no matter how mind-blowing the benefits may appear.

So, we advise firms to break their journey into smaller projects, just like Chow Tai Fook Enterprises Limited and Hong Kong Jewelry Manufacturers' Association (HKJMA) when they wanted to digitalize their traditional processes. Once Chow Tai Fook Enterprises Limited improved their financial reporting and HKJMA streamlined their event management processes, the ROI and benefits became clearer.

As you complete each small project, you will gain more confidence and support for bigger initiatives or projects with longer time frames. Eventually, the goal is for firms to look for ways to continually transform themselves so as to improve their end customer value proposition.

Do not do it alone

Digital transformation should not be a lonely journey. Partnering with the right firm can help you to sidestep potential challenges.

The digital transformation journey is also unique to every organization. You cannot use one firm's journey as a template for yours. Yes, you can discover best practices, learn lessons and gain new insights from others', but eventually your journey will be different.

Having a partner with vast skillset, experts, facilities and solution set can help you to develop your journey. Local expertise, access to global vendor experts, strong integration track record and the ability offer a single point of contact for all support issues are also equally important. So, when you face a brick wall of a challenge, you know we have your back.