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This article was contributed by Corey Glickman, Infosys Head of Global Sustainability and Design Consulting Services.
Over the past two years, companies that previously chose to watch and wait have been forced to focus on accelerating their digital transformation efforts. But if there’s one thing we’ve learned from this fast pace, it’s that getting good results isn’t a plug-and-play proposition.
Companies focused on accelerating the adoption of technology during epidemics, but modern digital systems are both complex and customizable, and to get the most out of them, organizations must now focus on the human purpose.
The Infosys Digital Radar 2022 survey found that in the last two years, companies across all industries have expanded their adoption of high tech in all branches. Earlier, Infosys found that a significant portion of the business (10% in 2020) lagged far behind those who looked at other people’s technology journeys before starting their own.
Previously, the company was meant for cautious observers to see how digital transformation takes place in their industries. Now that practically all businesses have flipped the digital switch, what does it have to do to make it work better?
The next step in digital transformation is to ensure that efforts bear fruit and that in doing so, technologies must work at the human level. This applies to the expanding universe of stakeholders: business affects shareholders and communities, ranging from customers and employees.
Here are four steps you can take to begin the process of preparation for mediation.
- Integrated experience
- Enhance the human element
- Create diverse, dedicated teams
- To measure efforts against environmental, social and governance goals
From efficiency to experience: Set up your company for a successful digital transformation
The first step from analog to digital is where the benefits are most obvious. Digital systems cost less and work more efficiently than analog predecessors. Infosys Digital Radar 2022 research shows that digital transformation continues to be the best way to increase driving efficiency and revenue. And yet, users want the tech to deliver something else now. In particular, they want to help innovate, provide better customer service and find fresh insights from the petabytes of data they have, Digital Radar discovered.
These are all very humane, experience-oriented desires. The enterprise must integrate human experience with technology and operations to build on the benefits of the last two years. Evaluating experience on an activity – or interaction on a transaction – demands more from technology and users. Integrated experience with technology will create solutions that are relevant and adaptable, which can help company-wide digital transformation efforts.
Take employee satisfaction surveys. Dissatisfied or unhappy employees are more likely to fill out surveys, making it difficult to get an honest measure of customer experience. A leading telecom company in Australia (also an Infosys client) has developed a sentiment analysis tool by studying help desk interactions. Sentiment scores were given to each conversation and analyzed. This effort helped the company to quickly identify problems and develop resolutions that would improve employee satisfaction. For those who are not yet satisfied, managers and HR representatives may be called.
Often, the focus on humans in the process ends at the design stage. This results in solutions that do not work properly and are not used. Partially functional and less-used technology has contributed to the rise of design thinking and the proliferation of agile programming techniques in the IT sector and beyond. With filtering across scrum teams and cannabis organizations, agility is now being applied in the business domains. Like PCs and smartphones, Crisp is not a new concept, but it continues to deliver results.
The CIO of the $ 30 billion company in the US states that the clever idea of a “minimum practical product” (MVP) begins with the project charter, continues at the beginning of the project, and continues throughout the life cycle. Teams often think about the whole project instead of the MVP in the whole project. “Go back to what Agile is: carving something small and achievable and from which we can learn.”
Create diverse, dedicated teams
Talent is the engine of digital transformation. But as technology continues to evolve, so does the shortage of talent. In 2022, knowledge workers want more than salaries and benefits from their employers. They want purpose.
Diverse, dedicated teams deliver tech solutions that make them unique and meet all needs because of what brings them together. A diverse team looks at solutions through different lenses, ensuring greater versatility.
Aruna Ravichandran, WebX’s Chief Marketing Officer through Cisco, describes three key principles of successful teams: intellectual diversity, psychological security and the right motive to fight for it.
“When you wake up every day, you need to create a goal that employees think you know is worth fighting for. And everything you do needs to be communicated,” she said, referring to the president of the human experience firm Wongdudi. Said in an October 2020 podcast interview with Skyler Mattson.
Psychological safety enhances creativity and creates a culture of risk-taking that promotes innovation, Ravichandran explained. The manager needs the ability to express his views without having to worry about whether the team members will be heard, to really know what the team is capable of, Ravichandran stressed.
Use ESG as your measuring stick for your company’s digital transformation
Technology and transformation projects come with many sizes. But purpose and experience are difficult to measure. The good news is that the growing emphasis on corporate environmental and social practices as well as corporate governance offers good proxies. Shareholders and stakeholders demand that corporations be held accountable for their impact and actions as well as their bottom line in the form of quantitative environmental, social and governance (ESG) goals.
Investors, partners and others have developed an alphabet of standards from ESG and UN SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) to the Accounting-Related Sustainability Accountability Standards Board. These standards establish a good framework for companies to define and measure ESG progress, writes Corey Glickman and Jeff Kevanoff in “Practical Sustainability: Circular Commerce, Smarter Space and Happy Humans.” Corporate leaders can work from this emerging framework to establish a scorecard and then set higher goals. This combination of a clear scorecard and ambitious goals can help companies make progress rather than just collecting operational data, writes Glickman and Kavanaugh.
Computational design (using computers and computational methods to design new things) focuses on the human experience by interpreting and measuring the behavior of actual users at a detailed level. Science-based targets have been formally developed to measure environmental characteristics, such as emissions and ethical governance. This scientific approach is also transforming the qualitative world of social responsibility and diversity into result-oriented, efficient programs. Technology and purpose go together here: the emergence of exponential technologies – technologies that enable very rapid change – and new mindsets that allow companies to pursue practically higher goals.
Launch better experiences and new ideas
Adoption of technology has helped companies save money in the long run and work more efficiently. Now, people want technology to help them deliver better experiences and come up with new ideas. It can only happen when the human purpose is integrated into the whole digital transformation effort. Technology should be distributed at a human level, understandable to all stakeholders: customers, employees, shareholders and neighbors. Codified in ESG, created by different teams, focused on people and integrated with experience, the purpose is a path of digital transformation that makes sense and works for people.
Corey Glickman heads Infosys Global Sustainability and Design Consulting Services
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