Digital transformation is not an option for a business, it is a matter of survival. And it’s such a revolution that some organizations are unsure of how to get started or how to continue it. To help you, here are the 4 essential levers for successful digitalization.

1. Adapt the business model

The first lever concerns the company’s business model. For pre-digital companies, “it’s about how to generate revenue, margin, in a digital world. The company must therefore orient its business model, its organization and its mode of distribution on digital channels. You have to be able to think digital first,” explains Philippe Gérard, offer manager and Webmarketing and Digital Communication expertise at Cegos. The company must be agile in its responsiveness to market changes, adapt its organization in real time or almost, adjust its offer constantly by learning customer behaviors.

2. Rethinking the customer relationship

The second fundamental lever of digital transformation is the customer experience. The renewal of this customer relationship requires more fluid exchanges, the expansion of uses in order to be more agile in the customer relationship. It is the study of all points of contact that makes it possible to optimize the customer journey. “We must limit the points of friction, so that the journey is as perfect as possible from the beginning to the end of the relationship between the customer and the company, whatever the points of contact, physical or digital. This means rethinking the organization of the company,” advises Philippe Gérard.

Often the company is siloed into services that no longer have a reason to be from the point of view of the customer who has a very transversal vision. These siloed companies made sense before, but today this is an obstacle. This explains the emergence of new professions, such as that of customer experience manager. These professionals are there to rethink the organization of services in the company in order to adapt to an economic reality related to the customer experience, the control of data through platforms, data collection processing processes to multichannel campaigns made by the company (web, emails, telephone etc.). “The nerve of the war here,” insists Philippe Gérard, “is data! It is necessary to gather as much data as possible from the company, from different partners as well as suppliers, and from other sources (unstructured data).

3. Adapt the organization of the company

The reflection on the digital transformation of a company must focus on the preliminary analysis of its digital maturity. Integrating digital technology into each of the dimensions and departments of the company must be the main concern of its leaders. To think about this new model, the training of leaders seems essential.

The management of this new type of company is more collaborative, in the delegation, the trust given to its employees, in project groups where the culture of initiative and innovation are fostered. This implies abandoning the vertical patterns of highly hierarchical organizational charts for more transversal, horizontal organizational charts. It is a question of seeing what are the priority points on which action must be taken. “The company needs to rethink what it sells (if it sells paper books, it needs to rethink its offering by adding the e-book); its suppliers (digital marketplaces, crowdsourcing); its manufacturing method, its distribution channels (merchant platforms, social networks), and to its customers. ” summarizes Philippe Gérard.

4. Adopt new tools

It is also a question of working differently through the use of collaborative tools: intranets, corporate social networks, and employee engagement on social networks. They themselves become the ambassadors (employee advocacy) of the company, communicators, relays of the company’s communication. Tools such as videoconferencing (zoom, teams), clouds, work on shared documents, teleworking, are totally part of the digital revolution adapted to the company.

The Covid-19 crisis has revealed the interest of these shared digital tools that constitute a fundamental lever for a successful digital transformation of the company.

The development of a corporate culture that has meaning and values is one of the fundamental elements of companies that want to be at the page of digital transformation.

Digital transformation is a component of a much more global transformation of the company that must adapt to the health, economic, environmental and social context. “It is necessary to rethink the business model,” concludes Philippe Gérard, “and to ask ourselves how to ensure that the company’s activity remains sustainable, while adapting to new modes of distribution and consumption.