Investments in digital transformation are expected to hit $2 trillion by 2019—up to 40 percent of IT spending. That’s good, right? After all, every company needs to enhance its tech adoption to move forward in today’s marketplace. Not so fast. Despite the free-wheeling investment in technology today, studies show that nearly 80 percent of CIOs rate their current digital strategy as just moderately effective—or worse. It seems despite our willingness to plunge into the digital age, true digital transformation success is hard to come by. How do we turn the trend? By watching the winners—the companies that are doing it right in gaining a truly competitive digital transformation edge. The following are just a few of our favorite recent digital transformation success stories.
I know: lift your jaw off the floor. After years of cost-cutting, and finding its rank as dead last in customer satisfaction from Consumer Reports, some believe Sprint may be making a much-needed come back. If you’ve ever had the head-banging experience of trying to call Sprint’s customer care line, you’re likely staring at your screen in disbelief—but hear me out. The company has apparently ditched its now infamous cost-cutting efforts in favor of technology investment, focusing on a new “data-first” culture that allows the company to better understand its customers usage and needs. I won’t say everything is perfect—but I will say it sounds like they’re trying. They’re doing lunch-and-learns, looking at trends, and trying to emulate other “tech first” companies like Amazon to see how to do customer—and tech—experience better. If nothing else, they’re doing a lot of the right things when it comes to working their way back to the positive side of customer engagement and digital transformation success.
Putnam is leading the way when it comes to digital transformation in the finance sector. It’s put a kibosh on its legacy applications, moving many to the cloud and focusing more on process automation—and rightfully so. Like Sprint, Putnam has also focused on data in a big way, even taking time to develop a data science center of excellence that uses machine learning to develop greater business insights. Are these things mind-blowing? No! The company is simply using proven tech to enhance its customer experience—just like it is meant to. No wasted tech—no tech for tech’s sake. Just good old-fashioned execution. That’s what I call digital transformation success.
Town of Cary, NC
You have to hand it to the little guy. The town of Cary, NC—with a population of just 160,000—is working to create smart city all its own by way of technologies like the IoT, Salesforce, and Amazon Echo. Cary is using its Town Hall campus to build a simulated smart city, with tested applications that—when proven successful—will move on to use city-wide. This includes things like smart parking, lighting, and recycling services. But what I really love is that Cary is working with its people to define digital transformation success. It’s developed a network of subject matter experts and seems committed to not just adopting advanced tech—but to adopting tech that truly works for its city. Like I’ve said many times—the people on the front line of digital transformation need to buy in to it for it to be successful. Cary seems to understand that trend.
Like I said—none of this is rocket science. Contrary to all the tech hype, you don’t need to disrupt your industry to be successful in today’s digital transformation. You simply need to look at the data. You need to commit to creating a culture that respects the data. And you need to be willing to adopt or let go of the technologies that support that data’s findings. The wonderful thing about digital transformation is that the data is there to tell us exactly what we need to do to succeed. All we as companies need to do for digital transformation success is act on it. We hope to read more about thee and other digital transformation success stories soon.
The original version of this article was first published on Futurum.
Daniel Newman is the Principal Analyst of Futurum Research and the CEO of Broadsuite Media Group. Living his life at the intersection of people and technology, Daniel works with the world’s largest technology brands exploring Digital Transformation and how it is influencing the enterprise. From Big Data to IoT to Cloud Computing, Newman makes the connections between business, people and tech that are required for companies to benefit most from their technology projects, which leads to his ideas regularly being cited in CIO.Com, CIO Review and hundreds of other sites across the world. A 5x Best Selling Author including his most recent “Building Dragons: Digital Transformation in the Experience Economy,” Daniel is also a Forbes, Entrepreneur and Huffington Post Contributor. MBA and Graduate Adjunct Professor, Daniel Newman is a Chicago Native and his speaking takes him around the world each year as he shares his vision of the role technology will play in our future.