Do Not Attempt Digital Transformation (Without Supervision)

Are you tactical or strategic?

When you hear that nearly two-thirds (65%) of businesses have named improving the customer experience as the top driver for digital transformation, this should come as no surprise. For some time now, businesses are realizing price and products are not enough — customers value experiences, and digital transformation is what allows businesses to use their data, update their processes, and ultimately provide customer experiences that inspire loyalty.

Sure, most organizations can really get behind the idea of providing positive customer experiences, but, when it comes down to it, deciding where to start can stop momentum in its tracks. Leaders may think, how can we transform when we are bogged down with legacy systems, siloed data sources, unmanaged customer journeys, and reactive, rather than proactive, IT strategies?

Only 14% of IT budgets are considered strategic today, but, within the next five years, that figure is expected to reach 64%. According to our data with 451 Research, businesses are realigning their spending to move beyond tactical and toward strategic spending on digital transformation. Improved integration and data-sharing capabilities across all applications within a business are paramount to the strategic spending that will empower digital transformation.

Partners for the win

Here is where strategic partnerships come in. Businesses proactively shaping their digital futures are investing in expert partners to help them break down silos and create a unified customer profile. Nearly three-quarters (73%) of IT respondents stated that it was very important for strategic partnerships among vendors to create a unified customer profile and improved integration across business applications on intelligent platforms. Not only do partners help build this digital framework, but they are also often the key to gaining full value of the build as they guide businesses to use them in the most valuable ways.

The need to capture and analyze new forms of data is playing a powerful role in improving digital innovation, and no single company can be an expert in all of those areas at once.

Whether companies are able to partner with the right experts will create a significant gap between digital leaders and laggards.

Barriers to digital transformation

Although they may embrace the notion to improve CX, many companies continue to struggle to create a broad, all-encompassing strategy to embrace customers who move across digital and physical channels in journeys that are difficult to keep up with. 50% of companies are not actively digitizing their businesses with a formal strategy. In order to execute upon a formal strategy, organizations must have buy-in from all parts of the business, and that means IT priorities that are aligned with the goal of customer experience optimization.

Aside from lacking a formal strategy, there are many other barriers to digital transformation: overcoming organizational silos, the complexity of legacy applications, and caution about the security of sensitive data are only a few.

When facing this level of complexity, businesses must rely on partners that are experts in each area, who can plan and execute the integration of applications, digitize workflows, and give a long-term plan to gain digital maturity.

Without the right partnership, you may unintentionally be building your digital foundation on sand as you move from tactic to tactic chasing the next shiny object, instead of laying a strategic foundation that will scale as your digital maturity grows.

The right partner for the right outcome

When businesses confront the complexity that is digital transformation, they know they don’t want to face it alone. Partners like Adobe + Microsoft are experts in each area that provides exceptional experiences to customers on any channel.

Adobe + Microsoft align and manage data sources to create a unified customer profile, employ artificial intelligence (AI) to manage complex tasks, simplify workflows across silos, and harness a secure and scalable cloud infrastructure to support all business operations.

No matter where you are in your digital transformation, make sure you aren’t traveling alone. With the right partner, digital transformation in all its forms will make doing business easier, more rewarding, and lucrative.

Ready to learn more? Check out these infographics:

Preparing Businesses for the Hard Work of Digital Transformation

Customer Experience as the Catalyst for Digital Transformation