Digital transformation means something different to every organization, every team and every individual. The definition varies because the impact and effort required by different groups varies. But, there’s typically one line of thinking that people have in common: digital transformation is perceived as a massive undertaking across any organization. This misperception can sometimes hinder organizations in taking the first step in their digital transformation journey—they don’t even start because the process feels paralyzing. And for others, digital transformation does become a huge undertaking, even when it doesn’t have to be. Here are 11 surefire steps you should keep in mind as you take the first steps on the path to digital transformation.
Establish the team and identify the decision makers.
Organizations need to have the right people on the team to plan and implement a project—everyone should be on the same page regarding the approach, down to the details of when and where meetings will be held. Will the team establish a daily scrum or a weekly touch-base?
There’s also always going to be someone who will have the final say on a decision (likely the same person championing the efforts to begin with), so know who that person is and establish a direct line of communication with them.
The biggest decision makers when it comes to investing in digital transformation initiatives are the CEO (62%), CTO (43%) and CIO (40%).
Clearly articulate expected outcomes.
Some teams move too quickly and identify a solution before they truly identify the problem. Instead, they need to ask and answer a couple of questions to help inform their strategy:
- Ask and answer: “What are we trying to do/achieve?”
- Ask and answer: “What tools do we need in order to accomplish our goals?”
Once teams ask and answer these “simple” questions, they’re ready to start operationalizing a strategy knowing which tools they need, what workflows they need to establish and what content they need to create.
Find the right product and the right partner.
This can easily improve the planning process from both a strategic and tactical standpoint. Brightspot GO, for example, provides support for headless, decoupled or coupled in a single instance for the broadest and fastest content distribution.
Speed equals savings.
Organizations are naturally “price sensitive,” and budget becomes a significant consideration when looking at a project over six months versus 30 days. Today, especially, staying within budget is a top priority.
Launching a single site allows organizations to focus on getting one thing done right, on time and on budget. If an organization is launching a site as part of an existing ecosystem, that gets a bit more complicated. The team then has to start thinking about different considerations (additional team members, long review and approval cycles, and more) that may not work within a 30-day timeframe.
"How to Win at Digital Transformation" (Forbes Insights)
"COVID-19 Digital Engagement Report" (Twilio)
Speed creates quick wins.
Companies don’t need to launch a full fleet of websites to be in the “top spot” competitively. In fact, successfully launching a single site can more quickly lead to internal buy-in and be a great proof point. It can even make the case for more funding on additional projects. We don’t recommend attempting to boil the ocean—start small, do it well, and then move on to the next thing.
Speed leads to learning.
Launching a single site—on its own or as part of an existing ecosystem—will undoubtedly lead to “lessons learned.” This ties in closely with the quick-wins element, as teams are able to highlight what went well and what they learned through the process to do the next launch or iteration even better and faster.
Take a step back.
The team responsible for content migration should first recognize that it’s not the easiest assignment in the world, but it can be made easier if they have the experts and support who know how to do it well.
Find a partner to help.
Teams tend to overthink the “millions of pieces of content” that they feel need to be migrated. However, they shouldn’t focus on the number of pieces of content, but instead, the types of content they have—this is what ultimately will be modeled out, and partners like Brightspot help to do just that.
Give your partners access.
If an organization allows their CMS partner to have access to their legacy system, they can quickly model out the different content types (in minutes!). Brightspot has dedicated teams to help with content migrations specifically. We know how to solve problems before they become problems—all it takes is access.
The outcome if teams can take a step back, find a partner and provide that partner access? The content migration process will just work—it’s that simple.
Flexibility is key.
Sometimes when signing on with a new partner, organizations and publishers hope and expect to use familiar processes and “ways of doing” already in place—and simply translate those best practices over into the new CMS. However, having an open mind and considering that things should potentially work differently is key. Some things that weren’t easily automated before now can be with Brightspot, for example, and this may warrant changes to the content process that the business was used to beforehand.
Change and iteration down the road is possible, and expected.
Pressure to get things right from the outset can stall digital transformation efforts. With Brightspot, we understand processes put in place initially will need to change and adapt with the business. Many organizations and publishers strive for perfection from the outset. The good news that isn’t always realized is that what organizations and publishers decide in the beginning isn’t written in stone; a site launch concept or plan might have looked better on paper, but once built, is not necessarily what the client was hoping for. With Brightspot, iterations can be made and our team of experts can easily implement changes as the business needs.
White Paper: Why Digital Transformation Can’t Wait Until You Are Ready
Over the past decade, digital transformation has forced a shift to online channels. Today, the COVID-19 pandemic is only accelerating this process for brands and publishers.
It’s clear that the digital experience is one of the most critical factors—if not the most critical factor—that will define businesses’ success immediately and into the future.
In this white paper, we explore:
- Why utilizing a content hub is at the heart of successful digital transformation
- Why an integration-ready, extensible architecture is key
- The benefits of a decoupled or headless solution to build digital experiences fast