Hurdles and best practices on the road to digital business

25 July 2018

In a 50-minute 1-to-1 power talk, business executives and digitisation expert Klemens Berger, Director Fabasoft Schweiz AG, are discussing hurdles and best practices with regard to the digitisation execution at their businesses.

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The first steps are the hardest – ideas on establishing digital business

Digital disruption is on the agenda of almost every discussion I have with business executives. Across industries, new digital services stand in opposition to established processes, thinking in terms of hash tags meets head-on with piles and piles of paper.
My business line contacts are continually faced with news and innovations on digitisation. The current technological potential is certainly perceived as an opportunity. Nevertheless, “getting on board” often turns out to be difficult.

According to the latest annual Top 500 study conducted by Accenture Switzerland and supported by ETH Zurich’s KOF Swiss Economic Institute, the key factors to realise the full potential of digitisation are innovative employees, investments in software-based technologies, digital growth as well as a collaborative ecosystem of partners.

The research however also shows that only a few Swiss companies are undertaking the fundamental organisational transformation that is required to build a digital business. I can certainly confirm this hurdle from my practical experience.

In meetings at the executive level I like to take the liberty of asking personal questions to start the discussion:

  • How can innovation and digitisation support me in reaching my professional goals?
  • How can my company effectively improve and strengthen its handling of innovation and digitisation?
  • Why should I personally get involved in digitisation execution instead of leaving this topic to my ICT specialists?

From poor implementation to successful flagship projects

On the top management level, the path into the future has certainly been set. Awareness of the need to stay on top is given. The appropriate strategies have been adopted and the necessary measures have been taken. But when it comes to implementation, many endeavours fail or do not fully meet the high expectations of the various stakeholders.

When I first meet with managers they often tell me about painful experiences or setbacks and highlight the background and context. But there are exceptions: Successful and promising implementations, flagships that have been realised quickly, on low costs and “exceeding expectations”.

You already know the formula for success from having played with your Lego kit when you were a child: Standardised and proven building blocks on the highest technological level form the basis. Always follow the principle “Keep it simple”. The challenge then is to simply start and try, just like at playing Lego. It is important to permit mistakes and be ready to take your internal and external stakeholders on board: to build block after block in co-creation. Side by side with robust, scalable and powerful technologies, human beings with their soft skills, their curiosity for everything that is new and their ability for innovation are an important key to success.

Setting the course for success together in a 50-minute 1-to-1 power talk

Based on the perspective of a leading European software manufacturer and service provider I can often alert executives of pitfalls and hurdles and offer recommendations that are founded on many years of experience – bearing in mind that any successful implementation requires co-creation and a partnership of equals.

In this spirit, please do not hesitate to contact me for a free 1-to-1 power talk.

Make a PowerTalk appointment now!