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The Layers and Phases of Effective Digital Transformations


Technology is a tool, not a strategy. When a company undergoes a digital transformation, they are embedding technologies across their businesses to drive fundamental change, often resulting in increased efficiency and greater agility. But that change doesn’t just happen on its own overnight, and a big reason why only 30 percent of transformations are successful is that CIOs, CDOs and CTOs might be losing the forest for the trees.

No longer is the goal of digital transformation to become digitally native, but instead to drive real, tangible value for the business. Charting a clear path towards that value and executing on it is the differentiator between companies that maximize their strategy and the ones that embrace digital transformation just because everyone else is.


The pace of change in the digital world is dizzying, and it’s easy to get caught-up rubbernecking the competition to spot the latest trends. Digital enthusiasts move in the same circles, read the same articles, and attend the same industry trade shows hyping the hottest tech. The result can be a Frankenstein monster of a digital strategy, cobbled-together tech that might not actually be valuable for their business. The fact is, every organization’s digital transformation is unique, and its success or failure depends on its own specific level of optimization.

At its most basic, digital transformation is a combination of two things – digitization, and optimization. Digitization has been around for a while, and just means digitizing information or making data available in a digital format. Optimization (also referred to as “digitalization”) is more process-focused, and involves using those digital technologies to operate systems more efficiently. A company’s ability to marry digitization with optimization will determine the value of their transformation. 


Read the full article written by Dinesh Varadharajan, CPO at Kissflow published in SD Times on February 6th, 2023