Case study: Digital Transformation in the post-COVID world


The global COVID-19 lockdown has undeniably affected our personal and professional lives adversely. The chaotic situation is forcing most businesses and organizations to rethink their business strategies going forward.

The main thought on any business leaders head is business continuity, and how to launch digital transformation initiatives to keep businesses running as smooth as possible during the pandemic and to better prepare for the recovery stage.

The virus, like any other crisis, has merely underlined both the need for agile solutions and the urgency and will to accelerate the changes needed. This needs to result in real plans of action, rather than debate. We’ve already started experiencing more digital transformation in the last 1 month than we have seen in the last 20 years. To fully understand what is happening, we must realize that these changes will be driven by new mindsets and behaviours that our society is now starting to adopt.

What comes next?

When will these changes happen?

The answer is that it will be in stages. The first stage is what we’re experiencing right now: a breakdown of societal and infrastructure functions. The second stage, which we are fast approaching, is a stabilization of our most critical functions like basic services, money flow and supply chains. The third stage, which will likely happen in years to come, is the desire to improve and correct the world by the new solutions and policies we develop now to cope with the pandemic.

What will these changes look like?

How are organizations ensuring business continuity and coping with the changes that COVID-19 bring?

Physical to digital pivoting

Sustainable footwear brand Allbirds has been operating with a new retail approach that blends together seamlessly the offline and online sales. When the coronavirus hit offline traffic and activities, Allbirds was able to use staff from brick-and-mortar stores to fulfil online orders. As a result, the brand never saw an interruption in meeting consumer demand.

This is the perfect time for organizations to switch a large swath of the operations online. Remote work and digital sales are not the future; it’s the present, and organizations that do not pivot with alacrity will die an untimely death.

Taking advantage of customer insights

Canadian brand Viva Naturals saw its sales daily sales increase to its highest level during this corona pandemic. How did they do it? They noticed a growing focus and wellness and spotted a knowledge gap among their customers in navigating different health supplements.

The brand launched content-marketing campaigns to target health interests and needs across their online channels. The included blog posts and live streaming sessions on issues like weight management to tips to manage cardiovascular health in older customers.

Data is the lifeblood of any business during this pandemic. The ability to gather, study and utilize effectively consumer data will differentiate the businesses that will ride this pandemic wave or sink in it.

Live-streaming and digital events

With social distancing putting traditional ways of consumer engagement on hold, brands have turned to live to stream, not only as to connect but also to create new opportunities with their audience. Organizations are now turning to video conferencing to also train their employees on these new online changes and their IT staff on implementation of the changes.

How will these changes look across the organization?

The COVID-19 crisis is rapidly reshaping the “what” and “how” of digital transformation agendas –for the better. Here’s a look at how the digital transformation looks across organizations:

Increase in automation for safety and cost reasons

Automation – in its many forms – has moved from the innovation agenda to the resilience agenda because of new pressures on both the cost of human workers and the need to have fewer human workers in many workspaces.

Cleaning up of gaps, redundancies and conflicts

As more organizations step up their digital transformation, a need to cut costs in redundant and conflicting systems will come to afore. The systems people underutilize will definitely be cut off and many job titles may become irrelevant.

Customers and employees become the new tech support

Organizations have been pressed to expand their support reach, utilizing everything from chatbots to FAQs to real-time collaborating with tech support personnel to allow customers and employees to be more empowered partners in resolving the issues they face.

Employee and customer experience jumps to the front

Today, with the major portion of employees now remote, employee experience of digital technology has gone from what was an option to what is now a necessity. As the employees use the technology daily, their insights into its operation and advantage is now a needed part of the organization feedback system.

With more organizations pivoting to digital/online systems, customer experience is now another factor organizations have to contend with. Bad customer experience may make or break an organization and efforts are being put in place to ensure every step of the digital transformation is flexible and seamless for the customer.

Organizations will build change into their DNA

This pandemic has forced businesses to focus on what’s really important: providing value to customers and investing in projects with a measurable impact on revenue and cash flow. Businesses will have to adapt to a new environment and adapt quickly. The ones who build change into their DNA will continue to succeed and adapt and succeed and on and on. It’s like evolution: adapt or die.

Data has finally become king

In a digitized business, data is the single thread that connects everything from the supply chain through internal operations to the market-facing side of things. Organizations that harvest insights from this data value chain are poised to differentiate themselves and emerge as market leaders.

In the current global lockdown, data can uncover bottlenecks in the business and help leaders quickly focus on the immediate priorities. Data can provide better visibility in today’s uncertain economy by revealing shifts in customer behaviour and marketplace changes.

Today’s data leaders are leading organizational initiatives by tapping into internal and external data and facilitation the consumption of insights from these assets.


written by NEWCruitment Switzerland, the Leading Technology Talent Agency Specializing in Senior IT Architects and IT Engineers in Switzerland

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