When planning a digital transformation of your business the speed and clarity of decisions made to determine priorities, objectives, budgets and resources will make the difference between failure and success. As well as the support and buy-in you will need from the stakeholders and leadership team you’ll also need governance.
Governance is essential to keep your digital strategy moving forward. The ability to understand and see impediments as they arise, and having people responsible for the decisions to be able to remove those blockers, will keep the whole process moving. As the digital transformation you’re making will be taking advantage of the latest technologies and tools to support your employees and customers, be aware that this is the ideal time to implement the tools that will support the required governance.
Any tools or processes implemented need to be able to support these four key areas:
A big blocker to decision making is the expectation that everyone required to make a decision has to be in the same place. Use the cloud tools you’ll be implementing business-wide to have quick, informal meetings to talk about the high priority escalations. Skype, Hangouts or video conferencing are all ways you can get together quickly to tackle the latest issue. Also, make use of any company-wide instant messaging tools to inform stakeholders of updates or raise queries. Everyone can agree if something raised needs a meeting or not.
Transparency & Workflow
Create a governance board that everyone has access to. This will enable the transparency needed to highlight any impediments or questions that need answering. Consider implementing a simple kanban board that lists all the planned work by priority. Each stakeholder can then view instantly what tasks are currently ‘in progress’ and also see when they’ve been blocked. If you have a work in progress limit in place to determine how many things can be done at once and things aren’t moving forward because this work in progress limit is reached, this puts the emphasis on the stakeholders to make the decisions required to get the workflow moving again.
Everyone also then gets instant satisfaction and a clearer picture of where the transformation is when they see tasks being moved to ‘done’ and other items are moved to ‘in progress’. From this, you can measure the cadence against the planned time frame of your digital strategy implementation. You can recognise any patterns of repeated issues that hold up the process and action changes through self-inspection to improve the processes being used.
Build collaboration by using the company intranet or shared document directory to keep track of changes and comments from everyone adding to any pieces of work. Google Docs, Office 365 and other cloud services all have the ability to set permissions to give view, edit and admin access. These documents could be anything required for implementing your digital strategy, such as your digital roadmap, budget agreements, order forms, training materials, contracts or anything else that may need more than one person to be working on or to be responsible for.
Your digital strategy may be a five or ten-year plan so having continued determination, vigilance and ownership is an important requirement to bring your final vision to fruition. Put in place everything you need to support this transition and be clear the steps required to move past any issues that may derail your plan. You’ll still be able to see where you are and what impact it’s having on the company as a whole.