Digital Transformation works for all businesses.
Digital transformation business

Digital Transformation works for all businesses.

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

Digital transformation is the theme of the moment, mainly due to the pandemic that forced people to work in their home offices.

Unprecedent growth of online shopping is a reflection of the greater digitization of society.  The growth of distance learning, the sharing economy (such as Uber, Airbnb, etc.), the explosion of crypto currencies, the digitization of banking and government services, and the emergence of an economy based on platforms shows this is a trend that Digital Transformation is not the future, but how businesses will survive now. All of this is achievable for most businesses simply by deploying emerging technologies that many companies use to transform inputs into products and services.  Any business can participate in this digital economy by starting to have conversations about their digital transformation strategy.

Digital transformation is the automation and integration of business processes within the company, and with supply and distribution chains. The use of these technologies has brought many benefits. Below are just a few:

• Increase sales by having information about who the customers are, what they buy, where they buy, how they are segmented, what their preferences are.

• Improve the customer experience in contact with the company, from the moment of purchase to the post-sale so that you can be loyal.

• Make operations and logistics more efficient, reduce time cycles, improve the quality of products and services, reduce costs, and increase productivity.

• Change the way you work. In the virtual world the company may have employees of different nationalities working remotely. With no location restriction, people can work from anywhere at any time.

• The wide digitalization of the business can promote the creation of new business models.

Digital transformation can be summarized as an evolutionary process that leverages digital and organizational capacities to support, create or improve business models, operational models and the relationship with the customer aiming at generating value.

Digital transformation is made possible by the emergence of several new technologies such as artificial intelligence, robotics, cloud processing services, internet of things, augmented reality, virtual reality, analytics for data analysis.

Even if the term is now everywhere, the examples we see are usually focused on large enterprises or multimillion dollar platforms like Amazon, Facebook, Uber, Door Dash, Skip the Dishes, etc.

But what about small and medium sized businesses: can digital transformation be successfully applied to them as well?

The answer is yes. Currently there are several available applications in the market allowing business processes automation for a low annual subscription cost. In other words, there is no longer the need to spend a lot of money to transform your business.

Let’s take a look at the picture below, which shows how different tools can be integrated.

Digital Transformation connectivity flow

This picture shows how various elements of an application architecture can be integrated.

Depending on the business, we can automate a customer’s entire experience when they’re interested in buying a service or product. In certain situations, if the interaction on the website is dynamic with examples and videos of the services, testimonials and with the possibility of real-time interaction with a Chatbot (software that provides virtual assistance on websites), the data and information of the future customer can be captured so that it can be reviewed later. The idea here is that automation will give you back your time to make sales, develop new products and services, in short to make your business grow.

E-commerce enables the automation of all sales interaction and integration with various payment methods, PayPal, credit cards, etc. Your website can be integrated with a virtual store. So, automation is selling for you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Customer management solutions, integrated with E-Commerce, social media, and e-mails and with the website, can monitor, capture, and utilize data from existing and potential customers. Data analysis and statistics techniques allow you to better know your customer including what and when they buy. It also helps you to segment your customers, allowing you to view which products must come off your inventory, and which product or service you’ll want to sell because there is ongoing demand.

Integrated management systems allow the integration of your services or manufacturing operation processes, enabling better business management, reducing administrative costs and making the whole operation more efficient and agile. Eventually it can integrate your business with any other business participating in the supply chain.

In businesses that have field services, such as homecare or professional services, mobile applications can monitor the provision of services, confirm the performance of the service, obtain instant feedback from the customer (such as Uber), so you can know if your employees or associates are at the correct location and effectively performed the contracted service.

And you can still have a view of all your business KPIs on designated interfaces or what is called a dashboard.

However, digital transformation is a journey. You have to start by listing the pain points, and by creating a vision for your business with medium- and long-term goals to support your company.

In the current pandemic scenario, for example, the imperative for small and medium businesses is to increase or maintain sales.

If you are in retail and your business carries inventory, start by implementing an e-commerce and a CRM.

If your product or service is of technical nature, where the customer needs more information to decide on the purchase, consider redoing your website so that your company’s virtual interaction with the customer offers engaging and informative content, and the customer can make a decision without having to pick up the phone to call you.

If you are concerned about whether or not your employees are carrying out the services you offer as expected, then try to develop an application that gives you visibility into what’s happening in the field. If your business need is related to administrative and financial systems, look for an ERP already available in the market.

Finally, look for reliable partners to help you on your digital transformation journey and see your business thrive!

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