It is crystal clear that the pandemic has triggered massive integration of digital technology into all aspects of life. From studying, working, to shopping, modern technology makes it possible for us to stay productive despite being confined at homes. Digital adoption is also imperative for businesses across industries to remain competitive and relevant in the changing world. As technology is reshaping the way humans interact and connect with each other, the shift to digital demands a solid collaboration of team members at all levels. Now, it raises a new question: how to embrace a digital culture for organizational success?
Digital Culture: Why It Matters
A strong digital culture is a critical success element for any business experiencing a rapid and disruptive change. Culture is frequently the most significant factor when it comes to successful digital transformation. To transform every aspect of their business, organizations must rethink their business models, how they interact with customers, maintain supply chains, and utilize data. Research by Gartner showed that there are six challenges to every company implementing the digital model, including:
From these six challenges, one obvious thing worth noting is that most of them relate to the discourse of digital culture. This comes as no surprise, given a survey by Capgemini consulting firm also showed that 62% of respondents cited corporate culture as the most significant barrier to digital transformation.
How to Implement Digital Culture
Upon recognizing the importance of cultivating digital culture to keep up with today’s and upcoming business dynamic, there are several measures organizations can take to implement it. The WEF’s Accelerating Digital Transformation for Long-Term Growth has launched a guidebook titled Digital Culture: The Driving Force of Digital Transformation that aims to assert leaders’ perspective and companies’ best practices on this critical topic. It focuses on four key foundations of digital culture: Collaboration, Data-driven, Customer-centricity, Innovation, and Purpose.
Companies can encourage employees to embrace collective goals and adjust their own values to reflect it. This is accomplished through data-driven decision making and data utilization to leverage business value. For example, employees outside the C-level can be involved in an end of year meeting to discuss the company’s upcoming direction. Thanks to digitalization, this can be held online. Moreover, the feedback and ideas can all be collected in a data pool to make more rational and inclusive decision making. If businesses are to stay competitive in the face of an increasing number of competitors, they must focus even more on the customer. Again, this can be best optimized with digitization by actively interacting and soliciting feedback from current and prospective customers.
Better Innovation with Digital Collaboration: Learning from HPE
Starting from 2019, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) announced its own corporate transformation, transforming from a legacy information technology (IT) enterprise to an edge-to-cloud business. To support the transformation of the cloud services business, HPE established the Transformation Office (TO) to bring different points of views together toward a common objective, focusing on reviewing and resolving misalignment and bottlenecks along the way.
HPE introduced the Innovation Quest in February 2021, a competition that encourages team members to think beyond the box and submit their most daring ideas for innovation in five categories: products, processes, services, partnerships, and user experience. While the judging criteria did not directly request that concepts should be purpose-driven, it was inspiring to see how many were developed with a goal in mind. A remarkable 25% of the concepts were purposefully designed to achieve both corporate and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) objectives. This is one example on how innovation can encourage digital collaboration.
Companies with a strong gital culture will be more dynamic and responsive, allowing their employees to respond to problems and keep up with the fast pace of digitalization. Such an initiative also plays an instrumental role in helping companies to be competitive. Organizations will learn to adapt to fast changing surroundings, efficiently use technology, and achieve stakeholder engagement.