Accelerating Transformation (Part 3): Your Digital Audit

Accelerating Transformation (Part 3): Your Digital Audit

Part 2 in this series on ‘Accelerating Transformation’ encouraged you to undertake an external Digital Landscape Analysis identifying the main disruptive technologies impacting your business now and in the near future, the opportunities and threats presented.

The next step in your transformation roadmap is to evaluate the digital progress your organisation has already made benchmarked against where you should be. The resulting ‘gap analysis’ provides a very strong foundation for developing a Digital Action Plan identifying the key actions and initiatives you need to take to improve your use of digital technology.

Your digital audit will also help to identify the main organisational barriers and obstacles to further progress in this area.

The Public Sector: Mind the Gap

As an example of the importance of undertaking an internal digital audit, recent research by iGov Survey, reported in a previous blog post here, concluded that a major ‘digital gap’ still exists between how services are currently delivered and how they should be delivered in a modern, digital public sector. While good work has been done to kick start digital adoption across central and local government, a lot still needs to be done before departments transform how services are delivered.

Based on responses from 235 individuals representing 180 unique organisations, the report concluded that only 13 per cent of those surveyed believed that their organisation was ‘fully embracing all opportunities to deliver services digitally’; 45 per cent stated that they were ‘embracing digital as much as possible but major barriers to further progress existed’.

These included cultural resilience (58% of respondents), difficulties in migrating data from legacy systems (56%), lack of necessary in-house skills (55%) and transformation costs (53%).

Your Digital Audit

Your evaluation of the digital progress being made by your own organisation should be built around the Five Key Pillars of Successful Digital Transformation outlined in post 1 and summarised in Figure 1 below:

Figure 1: The Five Key Pillars of Successful Digital Transformation 

The Five Key Pillars of Digital Transformation

Three main questions need to be addressed for each pillar:

  • Evaluate the progress you have made in leveraging digital technologies to support business growth, reduce costs, becoming a more efficient business.
  • What is the ‘digital gap’ that exists? In other words, what is the ‘gap’ between where you are now (your current use of digital technology) and where you should be in terms of the opportunities available?
  • What improvements could be made in each area?

The example below is taken from recent work we have been doing in the deregulated non-domestic water market in England. The questions presented can easily be adapted to fit the unique circumstances of your own industry.

The ‘Open Market’

In April of this year, the English business water retail market was open to competition, creating the world’s largest openly competitive water market.

As argued in a recent Utility Week article by Bridgeall MD Stephen Beer, there will be ‘winners’ and ‘losers’ in the new open market.

‘Winners’ will be water utilities who leverage the full potential of digital technology to drive competitive advantage in each of the areas listed in Figure 1 above – see Water Deregulation: Digital Transformation is Critical

Water companies should assess their digital readiness for a more competitive marketplace by addressing the following questions:

  • Engage and Connect:
    • How good is the overall customer experience with your organisation, especially at Key Moments of Truth?
    • What progress has been made in leveraging the full potential of digital technology for enhancing the customer experience?
    • Does your current billing system provide accurate mistake-free customer invoices?
    • Do you have a well-developed customer portal delivering high value content, interactivity and functionality to different customer groups?
    • What ‘digital gap’ exists – the ‘gap’ between where you are and where you could be in your use of digital technology to engage and connect with customers?
    • List the main areas for future improvement.
  • Digital Operating Advantage:
    • Are you leveraging the full potential of digital technology for streamlining internal processes and systems, maximising efficiency and costs savings?
    • How good is your Settlement Validation System?
    • Do you have an efficient and effective Revenue Protection System in place?
    • Do you have an efficient and effective Market Integration Solution in place?
    • What ‘digital gap’ exists – the ‘gap’ between where you are and where you could be in your use of digital technology to build Digital Operating Advantage?
    • List the main areas for future improvement.
  • Actionable Insights:
    • What progress have you made in deriving actionable insight from the wealth of operational data being generated, including predictive maintenance from Internet of Things (IoT)?
    • To what extent do your employees have access to modern, visual-based, self-service Business Intelligence Software? Alternatively, are your BI needs still centrally controlled by IT?
    • What ‘digital gap’ exists – the ‘gap’ between where you are and where you could be in your use of modern BI software?
    • List the main areas for future improvement.
  • Collaboration and Knowledge Sharing:
    • Is your organisation leveraging the full potential of digital technology for supporting collaboration and knowledge sharing, internally and externally with business partners?
    • What ‘digital gap’ exists – the ‘gap’ between where you are and where you could be in your use of digital technology for supporting collaboration?
    • List the main areas for future improvement.
  • Transformation:
    • What progress have you made in becoming an agile, fast moving, data driven organisation?
    • How effectively are you using the cloud to facilitate business transformation?
    • Does your underlying business model need to change as a consequence of digital disruption?
    • What ‘digital gap’ exists – the ‘gap’ between where you are and where you could be in digitally transforming your organisation?
    • List the main areas for future improvement.
Summary

Auditing the digital progress you have made, benchmarked against where you could be, is the foundation for developing a Digital Action Plan – the main focus of Part 4 in this series

Five key questions will be addressed:

  • What is the overall digital business vision for your company?
  • What are the key objectives and targets to be achieved?
  • Who are your customers?
  • What are the key digital actions and initiatives you need to take?
  • What about organisation, resource and people issues?
  • How will digital performance and business impact be measured?

Bridgeall
www.bridgeall.com