Learn About the Challenges and Opportunities of Digital Transformation

Learning Objectives

After completing this unit, you’ll be able to:

  • Describe the obstacles that companies can face on their digital transformation journey.
  • Explain the business value of digital transformation.

Digital Transformation Isn’t Easy

At Salesforce, we believe that digital transformation is worth the effort. But we also know that change is hard. There are countless digital transformation efforts that haven’t succeeded. Companies have spent millions of dollars on transformational projects that didn’t produce the expected results. Every digital transformation effort starts with good intentions. Where do things go wrong?

Many times, the poor results can be attributed to one or more of these reasons.

  • Inadequate change management—Failing to invest adequately in change management resources can sink any major initiative. Transformation projects require a detailed communication and training plan. If your users can’t answer, “What’s in it for me?” and “Why should I care?” about a digital transformation initiative, the project is likely to fail.
  • Lack of C-level sponsorship—True digital transformation touches nearly every aspect of an organization. Everyone across the company needs to be on board, and that starts at the top. As any veteran project manager can tell you, the support of senior leadership is critical to success.
  • Talent deficits—The skill sets of top technology talent are different today than they were even 5 years ago. Does your company have the right people in place to make decisions in today’s environment? User experience experts who can make beautiful apps for any device, data scientists who can extract insights from enormous data sets, IoT engineers to connect products—talented people with these backgrounds are in demand.

These challenges are not simple ones. Digital transformation can be difficult. But knowing and preparing for that up front can give you the best chance for success. And challenges also bring opportunities.

The Business Value of Digital Transformation

Digital transformation is an investment. Changing your corporate culture and strengthening customer relationships requires money, time, and people, but the investment can pay off. A recent Isobar study found strong correlation between an organization’s Digital Strength Index and its share price. This metric is an aggregate measure of the digital performance of the top 1,000+ public companies in the US (learn more about the Isobar Digital Strength Index in the Resources section). The conclusion: Companies that invest more in digital transformation outperform their peers over time. Those companies are more prepared for disruption. They are better able to take advantage of new digital channels and build a larger, stronger user base.

Companies that invest in digital transformation also see increased revenue, improved customer satisfaction survey results, and improved employee productivity as a result of their efforts.

What Does Digital Transformation Look Like for You?

Now you know a little about digital transformation. These questions can help you start contemplating the journey for your organization. 

  • Which trends from the Fourth Industrial Revolution are affecting your business?
  • How can you build deeper and more meaningful relationships with your customers, employees, and partners?

Although these are big questions without easy answers, Salesforce can partner with you on this journey. In the Salesforce Expeditions module, we show you how.