What To Look For in a Digital Transformation Consultant
Digital technologies have revolutionized the world in countless ways. From the items people wear to the devices they keep in their pockets, there’s no question that the digital transformation is in full effect. In fact, it’s estimated that 85% of Americans today use products with digital and/or artificial intelligence elements on a daily basis, according to recent Gallup polling.
It’s the frequency with which advanced digital technologies are used that has forced many companies to recast themselves as digital businesses. They’ve done this both to keep up with the times and to improve the overall customer experience. However, implementing a transformation strategy is much easier said than done, especially for industries that have grown accustomed to legacy systems.
A digital transformation consultant, however, can make the transition a great deal easier. What should you look for in one? What do they actually do? In what industries are digital transformation consulting services most relevant? This article will help you better understand how your company can become an authentic digital business.
What does a digital transformation consultant do?
A digital transformation consultant is akin to any other consultant, in that they aim to make work processes go more smoothly from start to finish. But specifically, digital transformation consultants enhance the technological components of running a business. This may be evidenced by concentrating on where technology is already deployed, or where it ought to be in order to enhance the customer experience and provide a better product or service.
How has digital affected certain industries?
Although just about every business has been impacted by digital in some way, certain industries have experienced it more acutely than others. Chief among them is financial services, particularly retail banking. Gone are the days when people had to see a bank teller to get checks cashed or withdraw cash from their savings accounts. ATMs make this possible. Of course ATMs have been around for decades — more than 50 years, in fact — but many of them are now optimized with various features that make the customer experience even more convenient, by dispensing dollars in multiple denominations and offering cash recycling services, among many others. Digital transformation consultants have enabled banks and branches to better determine where and how state-of-the-art technologies may be best deployed to improve operability and enhance functionality.
“From the items people wear to the devices they keep in their pockets, there’s no question that the digital transformation is in full effect.“
An industry where digital technologies are on the rise is in food and beverage manufacturing. According to a recent report by ING, digitalization is one of the top promising applications in food technology. An example of digitalization within food manufacturing is IoT, specifically the interconnectivity of shop floor machines to PCs. The connection allows for both better traceability of product but also better control — processes can be inspected and reviewed remotely and often in real time. With strict quality requirements for food products, the move toward digitalization has helped organizations in the food manufacturing industry maintain those standards while keeping processes efficient.
Is digital always the solution?
While digital technologies are designed to make work processes run more smoothly so customers get a better product or service, it’s not necessarily a fail-safe. People — both customers and personnel — tend to be creatures of habit and may not find favor with major changes in processes. Computer-aided design and manufacturing is helping more factories improve production through advanced automation for repeatable, by-the-book work processes. However, employers still need personnel there to actually work this technology to ensure it performs seamlessly. With the sector experiencing a shortage in high-skilled labor, businesses must train workers on how to work digital technologies to avoid production declines that may result from unfilled positions.
With technologies constantly improving, digital transformation consulting is something that an increasing number of business owners will seek out in order to become better and obtain a competitive advantage over rival companies. Here are a few things you should look for in order to make sure a digital transformation consultant has your best interests in mind:
What a good digital transformation consultant does
- Does their homework – No matter how long you’ve been in business, a digital transformation consultant should take the time to know what you do and why you do it. It’s never been easier for them to do that thanks to online resources, but even if this wasn’t the case, their taking the time to learn your business is pivotal because no two digital transformation solutions are the same. What may work for one company may not work for you. A consultant will likely want to discuss how your company got off the ground in order to design the best digital strategy.
- Values your people – A digital transformation strategy can’t work without having the right people in place. Some fear that technology, specifically AI, will cost them their jobs, when it’s actually designed to make better use of personnel so they can be redeployed in a manner that makes the best use of their strengths. A good digital transformation consultant should consider people every bit as important as the process.
- Offer solutions for change management – Change is never easy, even when it’s for the better. A truly competent digital transformation consultant will be able to offer insight on how to implement a change management protocol so the transition is seamless and as turbulent free as possible.
No matter what industry you’re operating in, the digital transformation consulting experts at USC Consulting Group can provide your business with the tools, technology, and tactics you need not just to survive, but thrive. Contact us to learn more.