Digital transformation: business before technology

Published by: Blandine Faure
Published date: 6th Oct 2016

By John Roddy

“We pursue to build world-class technology, but it is not about our technology, it is about what happens with our tech in the hands of our customers.”

Speaking about digital transformation in Dublin last Monday at the Microsoft Tech Gathering, Satya Nadella summed it all up perfectly. In my various encounters with business leaders, I have also heard this time and time again: to ERP or to CRM… the choice of technology is not the initial question. And for service organisations like ours, it means total alignment with our customers. And working hand in hand with them to identify the “whats” and the “whys” before engaging on the road to business transformation.

To achieve a successful transformation, it is vital to put business before technology. Business drivers, investment levels, competitive landscape and market trends… all these matter greatly when defining your approach to your business’s digital transformation.

The digital revolution is now impossible to avoid. As Nadella put it: “It will no longer be the case that digital business models will be only relevant for software companies. Digital business models will matter for every company, every vertical from healthcare to manufacturing and agriculture.”

Keeping Customers in Mind

Executives across all industries are feeling the heat. And in this context, it can be tempting to rush into a technical implementation of some sort… and get lost. But one way to not get lost is to keep in mind your customers at all times. Seems obvious, right? Yet many businesses have not yet addressed the fact that today’s customers and consumers have developed new ways of learning about products and services. But once you focus on your customers’ journey, you can start thinking about which technical capabilities will support you, and your workforce, to address your customer’s needs.

Everything Is Connected

Microsoft's 4 pillars of digital transformation.

Microsoft’s 4 pillars of digital transformation

What Nadella’s mental picture of Digital Transformation tells us is that everything is connected. Digital business transformation affects all levels of an organisation. So, as scary as it sounds, you cannot just look at one business function. You need to fully grasp how digitisation will affect your entire business. Microsoft has understood that with the launch of Dynamics 365, its new business productivity platform (more on that later!).

Transformation does not to have be of a Kafkaesque nature though. Few businesses can transform all areas in one go. Rather, select the building blocks and remove them gradually to move forward in the manner that is right for your organisation. And keep at it. Only the ones who keep challenging the way they do things will make it through this revolution.

What challenges do you face? At Codec-dss, your transformation is our business – so get in touch with us to figure out the best plan to get you where you want to be.

We have great stories to share of customers whom we have taken on a journey to digital business transformation. We’ll soon be holding breakfast and lunch briefings to share these and to introduce Microsoft Dynamics 365 ‘s next generation of intelligent business applications – enabling your organization to grow, evolve and transform. Click here if you think you’d like to hear them!

John Roddy

John Roddy is the Commercial Director of our Microsoft practice. Since its beginning in 2010 our Microsoft practice has become the fastest growing practice in Ireland. It now operates with a team of 90+ business-focused technical experts.