Challenges and Roadblocks in Digital Transformation Initiatives

Did you know that 90% of companies have some sort of digital initiative already in place?

Surprised?

Well, there’s more…

87% of business leaders consider digital transformation initiatives a priority.

It’s quite clear that for a business to survive in the current market scenario, it needs to understand the importance of digital transformation.

But you and I, both know that the transition from your current method of operating to a new method isn’t simple. When you set your foot on the path to digitalization, you have to face multiple challenges.

So, to lead a smooth tech incorporation, you must be aware of the challenges and their impact on your plans. Then only, you will be able to prepare a robust strategy for the digital transformation procedure.

If you do not understand these challenges beforehand, well…

Why Do You Need To Prepare For Challenges In Digitalization?

I think you’ll agree with me on the fact that digital transformation eases the operations of your business, but again, it comes with some complexities. The process isn’t as easy as you might think. To lead a successful modernization, you must be aware of the challenges that await you. Listed below are some reasons why I think preparing for these challenges will help you out in the long run.

Risk Management

The blockers to digital transformation pose a significant threat to your initiative. In order to steer yourself clear of these risks, you need to create a robust strategy that undertakes all aspects of your business. Such a strategy can only be created when you are aware of all the challenges coming your way.

By this method, you’ll be able to address and find ways to resolve the blockers to a successful digitalization process more easily than before. Strategic planning helps you introduce the required changes without letting immediate blockers like change resistance, regulatory compliance, etc hinder the process.

Resource Management

As the process takes its course, digitalization requires a number of resources. Be it time, funds, or technology itself, you might have an abundance of these resources but what matters is whether you can manage these resources or not. You need to find the most efficient methods to allocate these resources as per the requirements.

When you are aware of the blockers of the process, you can make more informed choices about allocating these resources. You can also utilize previous and current data of the enterprise, for making smarter choices.

Market Value

In recent years, it is noticeable how adopting technology in everyday operations has become a necessity for businesses worldwide. The lack of one often leads to your business losing its competitive advantage. Moreover, digitalization offers channels and resources that can assist you in creating more customer-centric products. You won’t be able to avail of all these services if you don’t have a strategy for overcoming the roadblocks.

According to me, these reasons are major contributory factors to why you should be familiar with the roadblocks of the digital transformation process. But what are these challenges I’ve been going on and on about?

Here Are Some Common Challenges And Roadblocks In Digital Transformation

This list below contains some very common challenges that are also the reason why some enterprises couldn’t carry out and avail the benefits of digitalization. Remember to take a closer look so that you can terminate them accordingly.

Lack of Skill

One of the biggest concerns when it comes to adopting technologies in your organization is the lack of skills. I think the organization needs to invest in a transformation strategy and find compatible digital transformation services and solutions for its workforce.

The reason is simple, if the skills required to operate a certain technology are unavailable and you have implemented extensive use of the same, it will naturally affect the output of the entire organization.

Lack of Collective Vision

The journey of digital transformation requires a unified vision. All the stakeholders must be on board with the project, along with the workforce. At any point, if your employees fail to understand the purpose behind digitalization, they won’t be able to keep up with the changes happening around them. Which again, becomes a blocker in the path to achieving digital transformation.

Emerging Technologies

As I mentioned above, a lack of talent can be a significant hurdle in the transformation journey. But, with new technologies taking their course every day, it gets hard to keep up with each one of them. Moreover, each of these technologies comes with its own set of complexities. These complexities can easily hinder the productivity of your workforce instead of supporting it.

High Risks

Let’s face it, modernization is an expansive process. Going through this process can become risky as it requires multiple resources. The topmost reasons for transformation processes failing come under cost overruns, lack of expertise, unrealistic expectations, management issues, etc. And guess what? As unfavorable as that sounds, all of these factors are very likely to happen if we underestimate the impact of this procedure.

Unwillingness to Cooperate

Changes are indeed uncomfortable and digitalization is an organization-wide change that affects the everyday operations of a large number of people. Due to uncertainties and doubts regarding the new workflow, employees may resist the modifications brought by digital transformation. If the willingness to adapt is missing in your organization, you will find it difficult to drive the changes required for your organization.

That does seem like a long list, doesn’t it? But then challenges are meant to be treated as pit stops and not the final destination. To find out how to overcome these challenges, read along.

Eliminating the Roadblocks to Digital Transformation

Now that you are aware of the common roadblocks, let’s move on to understanding the kind of threats they pose for your business while it undergoes digital transformation. To ensure a smooth tech integration for your enterprise, you must find effective ways that eliminate the above-discussed blockers. Here are some methods I find useful and you can use as well to prepare your business for the same.

Ensure Skill Compatibility

While strategizing, you will be able to understand the level of skills that your workforce holds. Ensure that the services you wish to incorporate into your organization are compatible with the organizational skill set. You can also conduct sessions where you educate your workforce regarding the new ways of operating, I found these exceptionally helpful.

Additionally, you need to understand that educating an entire workforce is a time-consuming process and must be carried out with patience.

Create a Vision

Working without a vision albeit takes a significant effort, however, yields a small amount of output. You and your workforce must have an aligned vision and objective for digitalizing. When the entire audience understands the purpose and benefits of modernization, they are sure to actively work towards reaching it. While the organization brings about these changes, you can mention achievements that have been brought out by utilizing some of the technologies.

Find Suitable Technologies

Even though multiple new technologies are emerging, you do not need to incorporate every one of those in your organization. You must select the technologies that are suitable for your workforce’s skill level. Introducing small changes in the beginning and slowly moving uphill is another viable option if you wish to integrate advanced technological means.

Manage Risks

Digital transformation might be a vast process, but the best part about it is the fact that one can work through it at their own pace. Instead of opting for bringing in multiple changes at once, do it one at a time. Also, you need to find out if the technologies you selected are assisting as intended.

There is a high chance that due to ulterior reasons, the initial digitalization plan does not turn out to be suitable for your workforce. You must find out what are the blockers for implementing a certain idea and improvise accordingly.

Address Concerns

In case you face resistance in your transformation initiative, find out the cause behind it. Addressing these causes will help you find a solution. It might be possible that your employees have been facing issues with a factor you might have missed. Additionally, some organizations fail to keep in mind that when it comes to adaptability, humans require a bit more time and assistance.

To ensure complete support, you need to keep an active communication channel through which employees all over the organization can receive instant support.

Afterword

There aren’t one but five significant roadblocks that can hamper your journey towards digital transformation. Be it an uninterested audience or lack of talent, you never know what turns out to be the reason behind failing to adopt digitalization. If you wish to avail the benefits of IT transformation, I’d suggest that you plan the tech incorporation by keeping these roadblocks in mind.

At the core of it, you must remember that digitalization is an expansive procedure and requires great consideration and patience to fulfill its objective.

FAQs

How does failing to overcome the challenges that come up during digital transformation impact a company?

If a company fails to override the blockers that come up, it loses the competitive advantage offered by the digitalization process. At times, they might fail to see the user preferences or provide innovative solutions for the same. As a result, the quality of their products will decrease and their brand image will suffer. If this domino effect takes its course, the market value of the company will go down.

What are the major reasons for the abandonment of digitalization projects?

The major reasons that lead to the abandonment of the digitalization process are cost overruns, poor planning, uninterested audience, etc. You can find more reasons along with their details in the article above. But remember that as complex as these issues seem, they can be resolved with prior planning.

How can emerging technologies cause harm to a smooth digital transformation?

In recent years, technology has been advancing at an unmatchable pace. It might seem tempting to implement the use of the most recent technologies, but you must understand that each technology requires a certain skill set. If that skill set is unavailable, or any unexpected complexity comes up, it might become an obstacle to a smooth digital transformation process.

How can digitalization be made easier for employees?

There are a lot of ways through which you can ease the digitalization process for your workforce. You can, firstly bring the changes at a pace they are comfortable with. Next, you can conduct webinars and sessions where they are taught about the new way of working. Additionally, a platform where they can share their concerns and receive support can help you standardize the idea of technologies in everyday use.

What is the impact of digitalization on the revenue generated by an organization?

If you are a business owner, this might be one of the first few questions that come up while thinking of digital transformation. Well, you don’t need to worry about the revenue. When you adopt technologies in your everyday operations, you can generate innovative ideas. You are open to a wide range of ideas and means to carry them out. Your products become more accessible, and your audience pool extends. As a result, you can, with minimal effort, generate a larger revenue than before.