Digital First doesn’t Mean Digital only
In going digital we need to remember to embrace the physical. What do I mean? Let me explain.
In my role as TRA director, I have the privilege of meeting and working with a wide range of organisations across the Asia Pacific region. One thing I have noted in the advisory work we do is the varied mindsets executives hold about “digital”.
Some executives are already fatigued with the topic, some are still grasping at what it means, while others express an unquenchable enthusiasm. And there are many others in between.
But there are some common characteristics. Our research shows over 50% of Australian organisations are already undergoing or have for some time, been pursuing a digital transformation program. It’s the status quo modus operandi. It is expected. As part of this many are embracing the notion of “digital first” just as they did with cloud- and mobile-first before.
This can uncover profitable ways of doing business that meet many of the expectations of the contemporary customer. Indeed, there are now many great digital experiences in many industries across Australia – too many to list here.
But often these services do not meet all of the expectations and leave other opportunities off the table (or screens if you like).
How? Well, obviously every digital service, app, document or data is consumed by people in the physical realm; the places we live, work, play, learn, heal, create, or exist. This is of course, fundamentally inescapable and can significantly shape our digital experiences. For example, just think about how well your people work when temperatures are at their extremes. It doesn’t matter if you have the best digital systems in the world, productivity, motivation, and accuracy are directly affected, right?
When we forget or ignore the physical in going “digital first” we miss an important part of the experience and potentially other opportunities that bridge the digital with the physical. We can’t always address every need and sometimes “digital only” is the right option. But if your digital first efforts are digital only all the time, you are ignoring an often very influential factor in the customer and employee experience.
One area where this is reflected is in digitising workflows. In many organisations today, a lot of hardcopy and manual processes remain. Despite the hype, very few organisations have successfully digitised and automated all their workflows end-to-end. Yes, we are trying to digitise them now and uncover new efficiencies and business opportunities as part of this shift. You should be striving to do this today.
But does this digitisation process mean that we will, or should, see the end of paper and hardcopy documents? Often an affirmative response is the assumption I encounter.
In my view, maybe it is wiser to test this assumption and ask if they can play a new or different role as well? We believe a different role is also possible and even desirable in some circumstances.
“Getting Ready for the Future of Work: 8 Steps to Better Workflow Automation” was commissioned by Fuji Xerox Asia Pacific. For more information on how Fuji Xerox can help your business to get ready and stay ready for the future, please contact us.
The above article was written by TRA director, Trevor Clarke