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Digital transformation leadership a problem for users

NTT research has highlighted issues around the expertise of those leading digital transformation efforts and Kyocera has highlighted the need to concentrate on people as well as technology

The usual channel equation is that a gap in customer expertise should ideally mean an opportunity for a reseller to step in and solve the problems.

According to NTT's 2019 Digital Means Business report there should be plenty of areas for resellers to get involved with those firms that are looking to change their infrastructure and operations.

The nub of the problem is around competence and expertise with only 49% of those firms quizzed by NTT reporting confidence in the leadership team leading the digital transformation process. A lack of executive ownership of strategy is also listed as one of the top barriers to success.

The survey also threw up some issues with low rates of collaboration between business and IT and how digital transformation projects are being planned.

“Organisations are still grappling with how to shape their business to capitalise on a connected future. Digital creates the opportunity for value to be constantly derived from transformation initiatives across the business," said Wayne Speechly, vp of advanced competencies, NTT.

"Organisations should focus less on perfecting a grand digital plan, and more on taking considered and iterative steps in their transformation journey to progress value and clarity of subsequent moves. For various reasons, an organization is its own worst enemy, so any change has to be supported by pragmatic, self-aware leadership who are themselves changing," he added.

Others in the channel have also pointed out that digital transformation is not just about technology but is also about people, processes and the culture of a business.

Recent research looking at business digitalisation in Europe from Kyocera found that the people element was one of the crucial factors in deeming if a strategy would be successful or not.

"All companies know that the basis for evolution is to carry out a process of digital transformation," said Michael Powell, expert software product management at Kyocera Document Solutions Europe. "Although it is important to know that Digital Transformation is more than just about moving towards digitalisation, it is rather a slow process of transition rather than jumping in at the deep end with swathes of automated processes and digitised documentation right from the off".

“To carry out this process, the first step has to be a change in business culture. From there, we must assume that the transformation is a combination of new technological tools, which in turn make companies rethink their workflows and processes. Throughout this all, the people of any organisation are the foundation. It is fundamental that businesses understand that the employee is the driver of the Digital Transformation from within the company itself,” he added.

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