In 1999, visionary CEO, Bill Gates wrote a book titled “Business at the Speed of Thought”. In it he captured the business model of the 21st century. Most of the ideas in that book may not have seemed relevant during the period of publishing because of the quality of technology integration at the time, but it is becoming obvious that he was really writing about this era with assertions like “The important idea here is that a company should not take its position in the market for granted. A company should constantly reevaluate.”

Reevaluation has become the mantra of the business world especially with the rise in the use of technology. It is becoming imperative that businesses have to adapt to the changes in terrain.

In order to stay relevant, many organisations have resorted to integrating technology with their business processes in order to improve customer experience, transform their operations and possibly change their business model. We have coined a fancy word for this level of integration – Digital Transformation (DX).

What is Digital Transformation?

Digital Transformation refers to all the strategy-driven, IT-enabled processes involved in transforming an organisation in a way that aligns with the organisation’s goals and objectives.

In the book, Gates laid it all out when he wrote, “Business leaders who succeed will take advantage of a new way of doing business, a way based on the increasing velocity of information. The new way is not to apply technology for its own sake, but to use it to reshape how companies act”. This was able to tell us what DX is and what DX is not. For one, DX is not about using cloud computing just for the sake of it but about using cloud computing according to the enterprise’s objectives.

With the emergence of concepts like automation, blockchain technology and cloud services, businesses are positioning themselves to take advantage of these technologies for growth and transformation. Since the Business Analyst is usually at the fore of change strategy in organisations, how is the Business Analysis professional supposed to help organisations take advantage of DX for business transformation?

The Business Analysis Guide defines Business Analysis as the practice of enabling change in an organisational context, by defining needs and recommending solutions that deliver value to the stakeholders.

Considering this definition, a Business Analysis professional is one who is saddled with the responsibility of delivering value in an organisation. That means that, as a catalyst for change, we focus on techniques that deliver clear value propositions.

Below is a summary of how we as Business Analysis professionals can help organisations take advantage of DX.

1. Identify the need for change. What is that product or service that requires an improvement?

2. Identify solutions that will maximise value delivered. What new technology could be adopted to create a shift?

3. Define strategy to create solution. What are the company’s goals and what are the steps required to achieve them?

4. Take ownership by reducing risk of failure and reducing cost. How do we ensure that the right requirements are gathered and which is the most cost-effective solution on the table?

Finally, bridge the gap by communicating the change to the business team as well as the technology team with a goal to constantly reevaluate the solutions.

At Slingstone Business Consulting, we understand that using technology just for the sake of technology is equally as dangerous as not embracing digital transformation at all, hence we help identify technology solutions that meet the business needs of our partners by working closely with them on every project.