Digital & Technology Challenges In A Growing Business
As the business is growing, it will surely bring great satisfaction for the company and make other competitors watchful. On the other hand, when the business becomes bigger by scaling up, the previous goals, benchmarks, and strategies could likely become outdated and no longer relevant. Therefore, many aspects of a company's business strategy have to be adjusted in order to catch up with the current situation of the business.
Still, building a perfect Digital plan is like finding a needle in the haystack since there is no specific, one-size-fits-all recipe to do so, especially in a fast-changing business environment and after the pandemic. But when developing a Digital strategy, growing companies should keep in mind some common factors below:
- Digital strategy should be modified to catch up with the business goals.
- Why it is not easy
- How to improve the Digital agenda successfully
- Digital strategy for a company with a growing business
More challenges are waiting ahead for growing companies
It is quite often to see organizations buying other firms to enter a new market, expand their business, diversify their services/products, or to get more advantages than their competitors. Organizations with a growing business also appear to merge to join forces.
As a matter of fact, business processes are affected by a large number of diverse factors like communication and interaction with customers, business partners, and stakeholders, financial records, employee detailed information, internal documents, customer behavior on purchasing, etc.
As the business expands and scales up, it is hard to guarantee that the existing IT solutions of the company can work together and their functionality is enough to cover internal and external Digital needs. Let's consider the following:
Any ambitious companies are willing to expand their business and spread to new premises. And that is a good decision. Spreading to new office locations is much easier compared to decades ago thanks to globalization. But that does not mean it is an easy task.
Expanding in geographical aspects requires the necessity to adapt and adjust the internal operations of the company, such as those related to Digital. New offices need to be aligned with the corporate network. There should be Digital support that runs 24/7 if it is not there yet.
Introduction of new products and services
Expanding the range of products and services is such a great step forward. As a matter of fact, this will lead to the need to revise the Digital strategy of the company. For instance, the internal database will need to be adjusted, the channels for customer interaction need to be updated, and new effective Digital tools need to be utilized for marketing and online sales.
The company should as well diversify more solutions for collecting customer insights such as tastes and preferences.
Potential Digital Specific Challenges
Once potential problems that are connected to the growth of the business are defined, the Digital strategy development might seem quite easy: the top management indicates the goals for the business development and puts the right Digital solutions into practice to support these goals. However, in reality, the situation might not be as easy as expected because of some circumstances:
Not ready for changes
In order to achieve certain goals, a strategy is developed beforehand. However, in a growing business, there will be surprises that are waiting ahead at every step, and the goals and priorities of the company are often adjusted immediately by business executives.
Digital leadership is no exception: they need to act promptly and modify quickly in order to keep up with changes. There is a serious stumbling block: winning decisions are not always just the tip of the iceberg, it requires time to obtain them and develop them into doable ideas.
Lack of certainty
There will be a certain level of uncertainty due to the changes that result from a growing business. Nobody can predict what will happen in the future, such as the market reaction, customer behavior, and the competitors' actions when the new products are released. It might be hard for the executives to avoid the whole mayhem. But it is still better to spot it and reduce its negative impact on the business processes as much as possible.
Refusal to accept change
While developing a Digital strategy for a growing business, Digital leaders should consider a bit ahead of the times. It can help with the current tasks and let the Digital leaders look into the future to some degree at the same time. However, it might be hard for departmental managers from non-tech companies to keep up with the latest trends. Some leaders even get stuck with their own Digital strategies.
Key Points For an Effective Digital Strategy:
It is important for Digital leaders to maximize the competitive advantage for their companies by utilizing an effective Digital strategy that can optimize that advantage or even create more benefits for the firm.
New opportunities beget new challenges
In a fast-growing business, more opportunities are likely to be uncovered by the company. In the meantime, the company also needs to acknowledge the potential risks that might appear while carrying out new activities and protect its business by taking the necessary steps.
Companies have to deal with overloaded data from different sources such as customer service centers, operational and transactional systems, media, etc. In order to collect meaningful and useful insights from these data, a growing company can use big data analytics: to catch up with the market demands and trends, understand the strategies from competitors, recognize the premature signs of potential problems and avoid risks.
Digital leaders should use Digital consulting services to get new valuable ideas. It is obvious that Digital consultants cannot know the full picture of the business. However, the experience and advice that comes from Digital consultants can be a great help for Digital leaders to cope with corporate challenges.
Leverage the existing Digital strengths of the company
A well-built strategy should be created based on the strong sides of the business and those factors that can help the company obtain more advantages. To simply put, understanding the business strengths and digitally supporting them more are more important than improving the weaknesses.
Coordinate the Digital and business
The goal of developing a good Digital strategy is to support the business strategy of the company. Regarding this approach, business goals are assumed to be stated before the serious process of Digital planning. However, with the fast-growing business, executives should adjust the business goals in order to find new opportunities or even drop the unproductive approaches.
During the process of business scaling up, the top management must ensure that the technical solutions of the company need to catch up with the current business goals. If there are any discrepancies, the Digital strategy must be modified, or else Digital will be left behind the business, and there will be no alignment between Digital and business strategies. Consequently, the Digital roadmap will be less effective or even worse, such as being harmful to the organization.
Ensure Business Continuity
In a business with fast growth, different decisions can lead the company into different paths. While several ad hoc decisions are suggested, not many ideas happen to be profitable like the company expected so they stay unsupported. As a consequence, that can make Digital components stay in a chaotic state and lower their effectiveness.
It should be an intervention, or else the Digital infrastructure will never be organized. Letting things run on their own might lead to a larger breakdown. Rather than doing that, small corrections should be aimed at by disruptions management. As a result, Digital components are going to be kept on track and avoid serious problems. Moreover, there should be a certain level of flexibility in enterprise architecture to deal with the changes in the near future.
Be thorough while choosing software development outsourcing vendors
New Digital solutions may become new concerns for a growing business in order to effectively resolve the increase in the volume of internal operations (in case the current systems cannot handle the overloaded works), digitally support the new internal processes, increase the quality of the services, etc. New technology partnerships can provide many benefits for the company, even if it has its own in-house development department. The organization should wisely choose reliable software outsourcing companies and reduce the risks that might occur during the cooperation.
Collaborating with existing software development companies may result in lots of changes for the organization when new cooperation options are offered. Moreover, regarding the collaboration, the company may start doing more on their side or even get integrated into the process of designing.
As the business grows, the previous Digital strategy might become obsolete and less effective. Therefore, there should be a certain degree of flexibility in the Digital strategy in order to deal with the new business challenges: to reach the new segment, to expand the range of the products and services, to acquire other firms, or collaborate with other business partners.
Considering this respect, Digital and business managers are supposed to understand the business objectives then interpret them into Digital strategy.
It is surely not an easy task when there is not enough time for the Digital leaders to examine the available alternatives and evaluate the potential risks; however, depending on the approach that is chosen, this challenge can be either a serious problem or a great opportunity for the company.
Company management needs to catch the opportunities when they happen and carefully estimate the threats that the company might face.