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Eight Steps to a Digital Workplace: Part 1

Jason Wong | | July 19, 2018

You’ll enhance the success of your digital transformation project by following these eight steps to change your enterprise into the lean, mean machine you’ve always wanted it to be.

Gartner’s Eight Building Blocks to Transformation Success

Gartner spent years evaluating why and how some companies achieved their high status. After years of study, Gartner has synthesized those activities into eight critical steps:

1. Vision

Too many leaders fail to confirm their vision before moving forward with a digital transformation project. Unfortunately, without that vision as its foundation, the uncertainty of end goals will cause the process to falter and fail. The vision describes what “digital workplace” success looks like by articulating its values for all participants to refer to and rely on:

  • The ultimate business value of the transformation

The purpose of any transformation is to improve on past successes. Articulating how the future company will benefit from the changes will help to keep the process on track across company sectors.

  • The end goals as they express in the digital economy

Another purpose of transformation is preparation for evolving industry changes. The vision should note how the company will fit into the future digital economy based on the changes it makes during its transformation process.

2. Strategy

Once you’ve identified what you want the company to look like at the end, your next step is developing the strategy you and it will navigate to get there. Many companies must employ a variety of plans within their overarching, all-encompassing strategy so that each element of the enterprise can account for its own transformation.

The approach to strategy development is different based on organizational goals, assets, resources and needs. Some companies will identify technological needs as their starting point, while others may turn to employee training or asset acquisition as their first foray towards achieving their strategic goals. At the very least, strategic development should:

  • illuminate how the result will differ from the current iteration;
  • include a series of intermediate steps that are easily achievable and move the project forward, and
  • ensure that all corporate elements are involved and invested, including the C-Suite, middle management and all employees and staff.

3. Metrics

Metrics help you measure the quantifiable aspects of the transformation project, and include the benchmarks that will demonstrate its incremental success over time. Metrics that measure either or both performance standards and business values give the best insights into how the project – and the company – are moving to an improved state. They can track more elemental business functions, such as employee satisfaction, cost/benefit data, and workforce effectiveness to see how transforming your business practices impacts day-to-day business activities. Metrics can also measure higher-level consequences of improved methodologies, such as higher quarterly earnings, increases in productivity, or enhanced returns on investments. These measurements signal that the underlying transformative effort is affecting all aspects of the company’s fortunes.

4. Employee experience

Many corporate leaders believe that an engaged workforce is the most productive workforce, so improving their experience is often a critical goal of the digital transformation process. Companies with workers who are empowered by technology to attain their highest levels of performance outperform their competition in customer service, service delivery and execution.

In fact, studies reveal that there is immense room for improvement within the “employee experience” metric. According to Gallup Daily, only 32 percent of all U.S. workers are actively engaged in their occupations. Those who aren’t engaged frequently show up late, are negative about and around their colleagues, and are unfocused on their work, leading to errors and waste. Measuring the impact of digital transformation on employee engagement can reveal where these circumstances are now occurring and suggest what you might do about it moving forward.

You’ll find steps five through eight in our next blog post.

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