Already a key strategic initiative, the need for digital transformation took on heightened importance in the wake of COVID-19. Some companies, however, continue to see digital transformation as both costly and complex.
No doubt, the process will take an abundance of time, patience and investment. But businesses that are quick to adapt and adopt are also the ones that will stay ahead of the curve. And the ones who can capitalize on technological trends and elevate innovation.
Yet, some companies cite their unfamiliarity with technology or a lack of technical IT know-how as barriers to moving forward with digital. But what’s costlier? Upgrading your current infrastructure, knowledge base and processes, or potentially becoming outdated and irrelevant?
In this article, we explore the costs of not digitizing and why inaction can hurt your business, drawing from the key points discussed in our recent ‘Implementing cost-effective hybrid workplace strategies in 2021’ webinar.
The expert panel comprised: Sunainika Saigal, Director of Human Capital Workplace Transformation at Deloitte Consulting SEA; and Pranay Anand, Vice President of Managed Services GTM at NTT Ltd. (ASEAN). Moderating the event was Angela Cheong, Head of Revenue Marketing and Communications at NTT Cloud Communications (APAC).
1. Reduced productivity
In today’s digital economy, a company’s true competitive advantage comes from productive and engaged employees. Digital transformation greatly boosts efficiency in the workplace. Especially as remote working becomes mainstream and when connecting with geographically dispersed employees.
But when businesses have workforces scattered around the world, collaboration and communication can be really challenging. You need the right technological stack; accessible by all stakeholders, and trained to use it. It doesn’t just improve overall efficiency and productivity; ultimately, it benefits your bottom line.
2. Reduced cost savings
Digital transformation and digital solutions can help companies save on infrastructure costs. At the same time, these solutions can streamline and transform businesses and operations.
This is because legacy infrastructure is difficult to scale and needs substantial resources to maintain. For example, an on-premises server infrastructure needs a dedicated IT team to maintain it. What’s more, it also incurs other costs such as electricity and storage space.
When you migrate to a cloud environment, the reduction in server maintenance costs and collaterals is significant. And without any physical constraints, cloud-based technologies let you scale your environment; up or down to meet the demands of your business.
3. The risk of losing out on top talent
As more and more young people enter the workforce, companies must adapt. This means breaking free from conventional, rigid structures and adopting a more fluid approach. This will increasingly include remote and flexible working arrangements.
A recent Randstad study examined the digital proficiency of today’s companies. It looked at how an organization’s digital state affected its ability to retain and recruit talent. It found that only 10% of enterprises are digitally ‘superior’. What marks them out? These are organizations that have fully implemented technologies like automation, artificial intelligence, and collaboration tools. What’s more, they’ve invested in strategies to train or reskill workers to be digitally savvy.
In contrast, the Randstad Workplace 2025: The Post-Digital Frontier study regards the majority (52%) as still ‘developing’ A further 38% regarded as ‘proficient’; somewhere in the middle of their digital transformation.
The study looked at responses from over 800 C-suite leaders and department heads, as well as nearly 3,000 workers across the U.S. The clear take-out is that companies that are digitally superior are reaping significant benefits by completing their digital transformation journey. Compared to developing companies, superior companies are on average 165% more likely to achieve business objectives, increase revenue, save costs and see return on investments.
4. Missing the opportunity to learn
An organization may choose to not invest in new technologies and innovations, but this doesn’t mean that their competitors won’t. In any business context, early adopters of technology will gain a learning advantage.
Early adopters tend to be able to adapt faster to changing trends and demands compared to those who have not embraced digitalization. In the long run, the early adopters will embrace future innovations more easily compared to those who are just starting off.
In a more extreme situation, things could even come to a point where those who have been slower to adapt will experience stifled growth. Simply because they will no longer have the resources to adapt. And the gap between them and their more innovative competitors would have become too big to close.
Embracing digital transformation with the right mindset
Embracing early innovation can make your organization more competitive and invite multiple opportunities to your business.
After all, productivity, employee engagement and experience are benefits that come with a digital workplace. And the success and savings from these benefits will ripple out to the rest of an organization, all the way to the customer.
However, this is only possible when the organizational mindset undergoes a shift. And the company becomes eager to adopt new solutions that these possibilities can materialize.
Just like you, we understand the realities of digital transformation in a post-pandemic world. And how cloud solutions have become a business necessity. We’re also aware of the challenges and complexities that come with implementing these solutions.
To help ensure the success of your transition, we are excited to offer a series of Microsoft Teams workshops to help you navigate the complexities of both technical and people components. Contact us to find out if you qualify for a complimentary Teams assessment through your existing Microsoft licensing agreement today!