Keeping the lights on through digital transformation
21 December 2021 at 8:15 am
David Spriggs shares some advice on how you can continue running your day-to-day while going through digital transformation.
Welcome to the last in our series on digital transformation for 2021. We’ve discussed the key aspects of digital transformation over the past five months, including cyber security, information systems, solid technological foundations and new ways of working.
Our final piece will bring these key aspects together, allowing you to take those all-important first steps toward digital transformation while ensuring your organisation can continue to support those who rely on your services.
It has certainly been another difficult year for the not-for-profit sector, especially those who have had to accelerate their plans for digital transformation as COVID-19 continued to drive additional demand for services and called for new ways of working.
While many organisations were already prioritising digital transformation prior to the onset of COVID-19, very few were prepared to transition so quickly.
Now that we’re well into the thick of what is “the new normal”, it is up to all not for profits to carefully consider how they can best utilise technology to achieve greater impact.
Infoxchange’s 2021 Digital Technology in the Not-For-Profit Sector Report indicated that over 50 per cent of organisations surveyed believe they still have a long way to go when it comes to being satisfied with their overall use of technology, and only half indicated that they have effective information security plans.
There are many organisations who are keen to get started with digital transformation, but who still aren’t sure where or how to start and are concerned that they won’t have the capacity while responding to unprecedented levels of service demand. This needn’t be the case, and with some clever planning, you can start your journey while keeping the wheels of day-to-day service delivery turning.
If we are to take any one lesson from the past two years, it’s that we must plan carefully and resource transformation projects appropriately. Technology provides the opportunity to move our operations forward, yet poorly thought-out decisions can leave us floundering or even taking steps backward.
By carefully seeking out the right technology, you’ll be able to build upon what you have, rather than shutting down a particular system or process and starting all over again – leaving you exposed and offline.
You must be sure to evaluate three things:
- The technology foundations of your organisation – focusing on how your teams can access the information they need when they need it, along with ensuring all internal communication can be done seamlessly.
- Your information systems – how you store and interact with client records, donors and beyond is crucial to ensuring accessible, effective day-to-day operations.
- Your cybersecurity systems and protocols – they have never been more important. Assess what you’re currently doing and speak with one of our experts over at the Digital Transformation Hub for an assessment and recommendations.
Remember the three P’s that we discussed in October? Keep revisiting these throughout your journey, as they will keep you on track and focused on what you’re trying to achieve.
- People: Discuss how all relevant stakeholders have adjusted to new ways of working and take their feedback on board. Your people keep the wheels turning and are one of the most crucial factors to consider when it comes to digital transformation.
- Process: This is where you’ll assess your information systems, technology foundations, security systems along with organisational governance, human resources and marketing strategies.
- Planning: Timelines will all depend on what you need to achieve, and how urgently you need to meet these goals. It’s important to ensure you move at a pace conducive to bringing your most important asset along with you on your digital transformation journey, your staff.
Our team at the Digital Transformation Hub can assist you with this, assessing your current situation and making guided recommendations as to how you can better utilise technology to create greater impact.
Beyond assessment and recommendations, our team will be able to provide advice about how to best transition your organisation so that you can continue providing essential services to those who rely on the work you do.
This process needn’t be daunting and should not be seen as an overhead or time commitment. Rather, the effective use of technology will help accelerate your organisation, and allow you to achieve more impactful outcomes sooner rather than later.