Riding the digital storm

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The digital disruption storm is past the horizon and in the business backyard. Business leaders are now sensing the digital heat and are hurriedly getting equiped to survive the ‘storm-winds of digital disruption’.

Across all industries, digital disruption is no longer a hypothetical—it’s reality. Digitization is changing the way products are made, marketed, and delivered, altering consumers’ behavior and expectations in turn. These changes are unlike anything the world has seen since the Industrial Revolution. Those who don’t adapt will be left behind.

Organisations are under immense pressure to keep up with customer expectations, competitor releases and market innovations. When this messy mix is placed into the local context, it is further complicated by a lack of skills, infrastructure and entrepreneurial spirit. The forward-thinking visionary is a rare beast in South Africa so who is set to lead the business into the disruptive future? The answer lies in the employee, the customer and the business culture.

The processes, business practices and the business value of digital disruption need to be understood internally for the customer to feel true impact.

There is a need to bring on board visionary people who see the benefits to digital disruption and who can lead the culture to understand this change. C-Level, management and employees must to be able to understand the business benefits.

Alongside culture, skills development and understanding is the need to establish exactly how the business should benefit from disruption. It isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. It’s not a specific product pack that can be picked up, plugged in and left to play the disruption tune.

When digital change is limited to IT departments, customers and employees in the organization rarely notice it. These under-the-hood adjustments can be helpful, but in many cases, they simply aren’t enough to induce the holistic change that’s necessary for today’s businesses. For transformation to take root, the seeds of digitization must be sown across three main areas of business operations: customer experience, products and services, and core operations.

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