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Digital Transformation Roadmap: Steps to Guide Your Organization’s Reinvention

Digital Transformation Roadmap: Steps to Guide Your Organization’s Reinvention

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general

Digital Transformation Roadmap: Steps to Guide Your Organization’s Reinvention

By

Karthikeyan R

Mar 16, 2024

13

min read

Having technology for the sake of technology is not digital transformation. Oftentimes, it creates more complexity than value. 

Digital transformation is integrating the right technology into the workflows and processes to revolutionize them and add value. Value can vary depending on your organization and industry.

But a few clear benefits of digital transformation are:

  • Increased efficiency

  • Better customer experience

  • Informed, data-driven decision making

  • Cost optimization

  • And more

To maximize these benefits of your digital transformation journey, you need a framework to analyze where you currently stand. Once you’ve clarity on that, set your digital transformation goals. 

A clear roadmap will help you achieve those goals. 

But, 70% of the digital transformation efforts fail. Lack of collaboration, non-aligned executives, employees and business objectives, and inability to spot the right technologies for their goals are a few factors that hinder their journey. 

The inexperience in handling such elaborate projects, jumping on emerging technologies without thorough assessment, and poor change management only worsen the outcomes. 

To avoid this, partnering with digital transformation experts like Netcon helps because: 

  1. We’ve experienced transformational professionals on board who know what works and what doesn’t: For example, most of our people have 15+ experience in implementing large-scale transformation projects (successfully). 

  2. We've been in the industry for 17 years (and counting) and have led numerous large-scale digital transformation projects like Bangalore International Airport, Sundaram Clayton, Textbook Corporation, and more.

In this article, we’ll share a digital transformation roadmap, how Netcon can help, and also explain one of our successful case studies. It’s for a state-owned industrial promotion agency. We’ll call it Parks. 

Let’s begin.

Whether you're seeking to enhance customer experiences, streamline operations, or foster innovation, Netcon's digital transformation roadmap ensures a future-proof and sustainable transformation that positions your business for long-term success. Book a call with one of our team members to get started. 

What is digital transformation?

For the most part, it’s a buzzword that gets everyone excited. And it's easy to jump on that digital transformation bandwagon. 

It’s difficult to define it with one standard definition that fits all. Every organization’s digital transformation goals and journeys will look different. 

Let’s first address what is NOT digital transformation. 

There are so many instances that seem like digital transformation. But they are not. Let’s look at one such example and decode why it’s not digital transformation. 

A company does lift-and-shift cloud migration for their perfectly working on-premise legacy CRM software. There’s no need or benefit of that move. Why? Unless it becomes a roadblock or bottleneck for daily operations, moving to the cloud will only increase the complexity and unpredictability of cost. 

But most enterprises WILL do it because “it’s cloud”. 

Digital transformation means integrating digital technology into business processes that radically transform them and create more value. 

Value can be anything - automation that saves time and manpower, efficiency gains, sustainability, better customer experience, increased productivity, projected revenue growth, and more. Digital transformation can also create innovative processes that unlock untapped business potential. 

We’ve done multiple projects that perfectly align with this outlook on digital transformation.

We automated Parks’ water supply, management, and billing system with single-pane-of-glass visibility and control. We achieved this using ultrasonic water flow meters connected via the Lora-WAN network. 

Bangalore International Airport wanted to provide seamless wifi access to their travelers, while simultaneously catering them with tailored data packages and personalized offers from their tenants. We helped them achieve that via Aeropass.

Venbro Polymers reported huge spikes in their electricity bill with no significant increase in the workloads. Netcon kept their bills in check while keeping their manufacturing machines healthy using smart energy meters and sensors. 

Okay, moving on to the components of the roadmap…

Digital transformation roadmap: Factors to consider

We can divide them into three main segments.

  1. Assess and plan 

  2. Choose the right technology infrastructure 

  3. Invest efforts in cultural transformation

They are in the order of execution.

Let’s take Parks as an example. We’ll refer to how we executed digital transformation for them. 

1. First, assess. Then, plan.

Again, we divide it into two segments.

  • Current state analysis

  • Goal setting and alignment

Analyze the current infrastructure

We uncover the gaps and look for processes that, when digitized, can save time, resources, energy, and so on. When we did this exercise for Parks, it was water leakage, theft, billing inefficiencies, and lack of transparency. 

Another factor to analyze is your digital maturity. Start by answering these questions.

  • How much of our infrastructure and processes have we digitized?

  • Do you have a team to oversee the digital initiatives?

  • How modern and scalable is the infrastructure?

  • Do you have data visibility and analytics?

  • Is customer support digitized?

  • Is our infrastructure ready to take advantage of emerging technologies like AI?

Your answers to these questions will vary from industry to industry and organization to organization. But these questions will give you a good idea of where you sit in terms of your digital journey.

But to have that eye to gauge digital maturity and spot use cases of digital transformation is difficult to develop. 

Experts like Netcon, who’ve done it long enough, develop a knack for spotting these gaps and use cases. Experience, expertise, and innovative thought process is what it takes. 

Set the goals and align everyone on those goals

Once you’ve uncovered the gaps, set clear goals for the desired probable outcome that you expect when you fix those gaps. 

You can place those goals in two buckets - optimization bucket or innovation/breakthrough bucket. 

The optimization bucket will contain the goals that include optimizing or tweaking existing processes or workflows with the right technology tools. For Parks, it was water management and distribution. They already had a method. Digitizing it would optimize it and solve the pains.

They used manpower to distribute the water - a human would turn on the supply for different sections of the industrial park. Once enough water is supplied, he’d close the flow valve. This method was error-prone and tiresome and didn’t provide much visibility into the water levels, supplied amount, reservoir levels, etc.

The goal here was to automate water supply with high accuracy and visibility.

Innovation or breakthrough buckets will have initiatives that include creating new workflows or digital processes that introduce productivity, profitability, and efficiency. It’s the untapped potential of your business. 

Manual, irregular, and inaccurate billing cycles, lack of transparency, corruption, theft, and data analytics were some of the pains we uncovered because of the old methods. 

To address these pains, we created a new system from scratch to prevent these issues. It also provided data and analytics about water usage trends.

You’ve found the gaps, analyzed them, and set the goals you want to achieve from your digital transformation journey. What technologies will help you achieve those goals?

2. Choose the right technology infrastructure 

You'll be surprised how much leaner, quicker, and more efficient your business can get by optimizing the current infrastructure. 

We selected ultrasonic water flow meters connected via the LoraWAN for Parks to optimize the current way of water distribution. They’d show the flow rate in real time. We installed them at the reservoir and each facility.

These flow meters eliminated discrepancies between the amount of water supplied and billed. The authorities will be able to see any theft or leakage. And it saved 50 million cubic meters of water in a single month.

From analyzing to setting goals and selecting the right technology, Netcon can help you avoid the pitfalls. Because we’ve done it over and over for diverse enterprises in domains ranging from airports to education, we have developed an eye to spot these digital transformation use cases. And then, we use our know-how of technologies to find the right solution.

You can deploy multiple technologies as the solution for the same use case. But which one is the most suited for your needs? 

We had the option of different technological solutions for the asset tracking digital transformation use case at Sundaram Clayton - barcodes, QR codes, Bluetooth Low Energy, and Real-Time Location Systems to name a few. We chose RFID tags because they suited the application and use case the best.

Emerging Technologies pose a similar question.

Should you consider emerging technologies?

They add value. There’s no doubt about that. But not always. The buzz around AI, the blockchain uproar, and the enterprise 5G networks are all great. And they may add value to some businesses. Whether they benefit your business is what we need to answer. 

Do you need to move to the cloud?

Going the cloud route just because of the hype around it will be a rash decision. Cloud has its benefits, sure. But do you REALLY need the scalability and flexibility of the cloud infrastructure? Because the cloud comes with its pitfalls. 

With the right technologies, you’ll see better outcomes. Next, the culture.

3. Cultural change 

Digital transformation will significantly change the way things happen. To ensure everyone is on the same page about this, you need to train the employees and create a culture of embracing the digital.

Parks had to train their team to learn how these new water flow meters worked and how to operate the digital valves to open or close the water flow. Then came the billing application. It was all digitized - the team had to get used to the new way of working.

We thoroughly helped them with this exercise. 

Train your employees and help them upskill
  • Train them to use the new tech/solution

  • Enroll them in development programs

  • Ask them to take up courses that help them upskill to use the new solutions

As we did with Parks, we always offer to train your staff on the solutions we implement and overlook how they do. 

Develop a culture that embraces digital transformation

Once you’ve gone the digital route, things won’t go back to the old methods. So you need to ensure all of your staff, from all age groups, understand the importance of this change and are comfortable with it. 

Conduct fun workshops and activities that familiarize them with the digital shifts. Educate them as to how it’ll benefit them. Create feedback and suggestions loops. And if someone is struggling with the new technology, create an environment where they aren't hesitant to ask for help. 

With assessment, goals, technology, and culture sorted, let’s move to the implementation part.

Create a strategy to implement the change

Your vision is now ready after the above exercise. Next, you need a plan to implement it effectively and seamlessly. Here’s how we, at Netcon, like to do it.

Get the leadership on board

Executives’ commitment is a must

If the CEOs and executives aren’t convinced and committed, then the plan won’t go through. There won’t be a clear direction of the plan. If there is, the middle-level management and the staff who'll deal with the change aren’t included. 

Lack of collaboration results in failed digital transformation attempts. That's why getting a buy-in from the C-level execs is vital. 

At Netcon, this is our first step after we partner with you on your digital transformation efforts. We always ensure you are thoroughly on board. We do not shy away from having multiple discussions to answer your questions on the technology, the outcomes, and the steps.

We did the same for Parks. After a thorough discussion about the technologies, alternatives, and expected outcomes, Parks executives were aligned with the digital transformation journey we presented to them.

Create a team to execute the job 

If you’re doing it in-house, select the right man for the job. We have dedicated teams for each technology domain to execute projects. If it involves multiple domains, quite often it does, we create a collaborative team. 

The transformational journey for Parks involved various domains - IoT, networks, web applications, data analytics, and more. So, we marshall a team of experts from each domain to work on this project. 

Be agile and adaptive in project management

Agile teams excel at project management. They execute projects in the minimum possible time and disruptions. Here’s how.

Iterate and continuously improve

The agile approach doesn't have long sequential development or execution cycles for the projects. Instead, the teams divide it into short, iterative cycles that allow improvements and changes on the fly.

Once you do this, assessment and feedback on the work done so far becomes easy. It also helps with constant refinement and improvement as the execution continues. 

Build collaborative and cross-functional teams

Teams that collaborate learn faster. Their experience of working with tech from domains outside their expertise grows. Their understanding increases, and they are better aligned with the desired outcomes.

Collaboration between business teams and technical teams is a must. Business teams have clarity on the business outcomes, and the technical team helps them achieve those. A good way to do this is to develop a minimum viable solution, get feedback from the business teams, and then update it along the way.

You've built the teams and created management workflows. Now comes the data.

Deploy data analytics and management

Not valuing data and its visibility is the biggest pitfall of a digital transformation. 

Data visualization tells you everything right or wrong with the IT infrastructure. You’ll miss out on tell-tale signs of infrastructure not functioning correctly if the data analytics are haywire. And in the long run, it’ll create massive workflow disruptions, affecting business continuity and invaluable monetary losses.

When we first installed the flow meters throughout the pipelines for Parks, we realized just how much water leaked out or was stolen or not billed for. The amount of water supplied and the amount of water in the bill the industries received didn’t match. 

To overcome these challenges, we installed flow meters at the inlet of the reservoir tanks and the flow meters reaching the industries. That way, we’d know the locations of the leaks or theft spots.

Flow meters paired with the analytics portal of Parks meant they'd exactly know the time industries demand water in high quantities. Using these analytics and observing trends, Parks can be proactive with their water management tactics. 

The water level sensors would tell the authorities how much water they have in their reservoir tanks. Based on all these data, analytics, and trends, they can better manage their entire water supply operations.

Such elaborate transformation projects are bound to bring challenges along the way. Let’s look at them and learn how to deal with them.

Challenges and how to overcome them

The challenges we'll discuss here are not technical but organizational and security challenges. We can put them into two main categories.

  • Managing the change in culture and processes

  • Cybersecurity 

Manage the change in culture and operations

Digital transformation will make your old processes and operating methods obsolete. And that’ll bring a change in culture and workflows or processes that your staff needs to follow.

Communicate and educate the staff about the change

There’ll be some resistance from your employees. Change is difficult. But here’s how you can turn that resistance into graceful acceptance.

  • Educate them about why change is necessary and what benefits it’ll have

  • Emphasize how it’ll change their role at work

  • Train them to use the new technology and establish communication channels to address their questions

  • Encourage them to give feedback

Deal with the organizational inertia

The bigger the organization, the slower the pace of change. Big organizations have too many people, departments, and stakeholders involved. 

A phased approach can help you increase the pace of change.

Break down the large teams into smaller teams. Interact with them about the change, its necessity, and benefits. It should be easier than talking to all of them at once. 

The next challenge is cybersecurity.

Cybersecurity and security concerns

Digital transformation often involves technologies like networks, IoT, AI, and a lot of processing power and storage to achieve the outcomes. As soon as you go digital, cybersecurity becomes uncompromisable.

Secure your data and privacy

You can deploy multiple measures to achieve this.

Firewalls will protect your infrastructure from unauthorized access. It’ll prevent malicious files, malware, and other threats from entering the systems. Combine firewalls with Intrusion Detection Systems(IDS) and Web Application Firewall(WAF).

Have strict access controls. Allow access based on the roles of your employees. Parks has this built into their web application. Based on your role, you’ll be able to see limited information and have limited controls. Someone at an industrial park level doesn’t need to know the status of the water flow around all the other parks.

Backup your data. If an attack corrupts or deletes your data, your backup will be your rescue. Check regularly if your backup functions. 

If you have too many systems connected to your digital transformation infrastructure, install an Endpoint Detection and Response(EDR) system. It’ll protect all those endpoints from the majority of the cyberattacks.

Despite doing all these, what if an attacker still managed to penetrate your digital space? That’s when incident response plans and disaster recovery help. They give you clear steps of action when an incident strikes. If your operations stop because of the incident, the disaster recovery keeps the business running.

Measures to prevent cybersecurity risks 

Visibility of data, networks, and operations helps you detect anomalies and threats easily. You can go a step further and get vulnerability testing done. It’ll highlight the weak spots in your infrastructure and advise you on how to fix them.

How to know if your digital transformation was a success

Your digital transformation is a success only if the projections before the journey match the Key Performance Indicators(KPIs) and your Return On Investment(ROI) after your journey. These numbers help you gauge the extent of the goals you’ve achieved. 

Select the right Key Performance Indicators(KPIs)

These vary from business to business and organization to organization. But here’s what KPIs for Parks looked like.

  • Amount of water saved 

  • Hours of manual labor saved 

  • Consistency and transparency in billing

The web app of Parks helps them keep an eye on these KPIs.

Calculate the Return On Investment(ROI)

There are many ways to calculate ROI. One of the most widespread methods is to compare the total investment costs in your digital transformation efforts with the projected savings over the next 3-5 years. 

There are many other ways to calculate ROI. These are:

  • Operational efficiency

  • Reduced error rates

  • Downtime

  • Revenue growth

  • Time-to-market

  • Environmental and social impact

Not all of them will be significant to measure ROI on your digital transformation. But based on your use case, you can select the right metrics.

Accelerate your digital transformation with Netcon’s expert guidance

Most organizations know they need to transform themselves and take the digital route to stay relevant and competitive. And with an increasing focus on sustainability and environmental impact, digital transformation can help you achieve those going-green goals.

Parks is a brilliant example of saving water and costs.

Netcon’s team of more than 500 specialists across domains like cloud transformation, data centers, cybersecurity, networks, DevOps, data, AI, and more, will deeply understand your operations and provide you with roadmaps for some of the most complex use cases.

2,00,000+ consulting hours, 17+ years of experience in the technology services industry, and 300+ clients give us an edge. Our customer-first approach guarantees a tailor-made solution for your digital transformation use cases.

Want to craft customized digital transformation roadmaps that address your unique challenges and goals? Netcon can work closely with your team and devise a phased approach to integrate digital capabilities into your operations. Schedule a call today.

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karthikeyan

Written by

Karthikeyan R

AVP - Technology

As Netcon Technologies' Technology Head, Karthikeyan has spearheaded transformative IT solutions that define client success. With over 17 years of expertise, he has architected and implemented large-scale infrastructure and security projects globally. A mentor to 50+ technical experts, he conceptualizes innovative designs for smart city, transport, communication, and education initiatives, contributing to India's digital transformation. His prowess spans networking, data centers, multi-cloud, security, collaboration, and open-source applications.

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general

Digital Transformation Roadmap: Steps to Guide Your Organization’s Reinvention

BY

Karthikeyan R

Mar 16, 2024

13

min read

Having technology for the sake of technology is not digital transformation. Oftentimes, it creates more complexity than value. 

Digital transformation is integrating the right technology into the workflows and processes to revolutionize them and add value. Value can vary depending on your organization and industry.

But a few clear benefits of digital transformation are:

  • Increased efficiency

  • Better customer experience

  • Informed, data-driven decision making

  • Cost optimization

  • And more

To maximize these benefits of your digital transformation journey, you need a framework to analyze where you currently stand. Once you’ve clarity on that, set your digital transformation goals. 

A clear roadmap will help you achieve those goals. 

But, 70% of the digital transformation efforts fail. Lack of collaboration, non-aligned executives, employees and business objectives, and inability to spot the right technologies for their goals are a few factors that hinder their journey. 

The inexperience in handling such elaborate projects, jumping on emerging technologies without thorough assessment, and poor change management only worsen the outcomes. 

To avoid this, partnering with digital transformation experts like Netcon helps because: 

  1. We’ve experienced transformational professionals on board who know what works and what doesn’t: For example, most of our people have 15+ experience in implementing large-scale transformation projects (successfully). 

  2. We've been in the industry for 17 years (and counting) and have led numerous large-scale digital transformation projects like Bangalore International Airport, Sundaram Clayton, Textbook Corporation, and more.

In this article, we’ll share a digital transformation roadmap, how Netcon can help, and also explain one of our successful case studies. It’s for a state-owned industrial promotion agency. We’ll call it Parks. 

Let’s begin.

Whether you're seeking to enhance customer experiences, streamline operations, or foster innovation, Netcon's digital transformation roadmap ensures a future-proof and sustainable transformation that positions your business for long-term success. Book a call with one of our team members to get started. 

What is digital transformation?

For the most part, it’s a buzzword that gets everyone excited. And it's easy to jump on that digital transformation bandwagon. 

It’s difficult to define it with one standard definition that fits all. Every organization’s digital transformation goals and journeys will look different. 

Let’s first address what is NOT digital transformation. 

There are so many instances that seem like digital transformation. But they are not. Let’s look at one such example and decode why it’s not digital transformation. 

A company does lift-and-shift cloud migration for their perfectly working on-premise legacy CRM software. There’s no need or benefit of that move. Why? Unless it becomes a roadblock or bottleneck for daily operations, moving to the cloud will only increase the complexity and unpredictability of cost. 

But most enterprises WILL do it because “it’s cloud”. 

Digital transformation means integrating digital technology into business processes that radically transform them and create more value. 

Value can be anything - automation that saves time and manpower, efficiency gains, sustainability, better customer experience, increased productivity, projected revenue growth, and more. Digital transformation can also create innovative processes that unlock untapped business potential. 

We’ve done multiple projects that perfectly align with this outlook on digital transformation.

We automated Parks’ water supply, management, and billing system with single-pane-of-glass visibility and control. We achieved this using ultrasonic water flow meters connected via the Lora-WAN network. 

Bangalore International Airport wanted to provide seamless wifi access to their travelers, while simultaneously catering them with tailored data packages and personalized offers from their tenants. We helped them achieve that via Aeropass.

Venbro Polymers reported huge spikes in their electricity bill with no significant increase in the workloads. Netcon kept their bills in check while keeping their manufacturing machines healthy using smart energy meters and sensors. 

Okay, moving on to the components of the roadmap…

Digital transformation roadmap: Factors to consider

We can divide them into three main segments.

  1. Assess and plan 

  2. Choose the right technology infrastructure 

  3. Invest efforts in cultural transformation

They are in the order of execution.

Let’s take Parks as an example. We’ll refer to how we executed digital transformation for them. 

1. First, assess. Then, plan.

Again, we divide it into two segments.

  • Current state analysis

  • Goal setting and alignment

Analyze the current infrastructure

We uncover the gaps and look for processes that, when digitized, can save time, resources, energy, and so on. When we did this exercise for Parks, it was water leakage, theft, billing inefficiencies, and lack of transparency. 

Another factor to analyze is your digital maturity. Start by answering these questions.

  • How much of our infrastructure and processes have we digitized?

  • Do you have a team to oversee the digital initiatives?

  • How modern and scalable is the infrastructure?

  • Do you have data visibility and analytics?

  • Is customer support digitized?

  • Is our infrastructure ready to take advantage of emerging technologies like AI?

Your answers to these questions will vary from industry to industry and organization to organization. But these questions will give you a good idea of where you sit in terms of your digital journey.

But to have that eye to gauge digital maturity and spot use cases of digital transformation is difficult to develop. 

Experts like Netcon, who’ve done it long enough, develop a knack for spotting these gaps and use cases. Experience, expertise, and innovative thought process is what it takes. 

Set the goals and align everyone on those goals

Once you’ve uncovered the gaps, set clear goals for the desired probable outcome that you expect when you fix those gaps. 

You can place those goals in two buckets - optimization bucket or innovation/breakthrough bucket. 

The optimization bucket will contain the goals that include optimizing or tweaking existing processes or workflows with the right technology tools. For Parks, it was water management and distribution. They already had a method. Digitizing it would optimize it and solve the pains.

They used manpower to distribute the water - a human would turn on the supply for different sections of the industrial park. Once enough water is supplied, he’d close the flow valve. This method was error-prone and tiresome and didn’t provide much visibility into the water levels, supplied amount, reservoir levels, etc.

The goal here was to automate water supply with high accuracy and visibility.

Innovation or breakthrough buckets will have initiatives that include creating new workflows or digital processes that introduce productivity, profitability, and efficiency. It’s the untapped potential of your business. 

Manual, irregular, and inaccurate billing cycles, lack of transparency, corruption, theft, and data analytics were some of the pains we uncovered because of the old methods. 

To address these pains, we created a new system from scratch to prevent these issues. It also provided data and analytics about water usage trends.

You’ve found the gaps, analyzed them, and set the goals you want to achieve from your digital transformation journey. What technologies will help you achieve those goals?

2. Choose the right technology infrastructure 

You'll be surprised how much leaner, quicker, and more efficient your business can get by optimizing the current infrastructure. 

We selected ultrasonic water flow meters connected via the LoraWAN for Parks to optimize the current way of water distribution. They’d show the flow rate in real time. We installed them at the reservoir and each facility.

These flow meters eliminated discrepancies between the amount of water supplied and billed. The authorities will be able to see any theft or leakage. And it saved 50 million cubic meters of water in a single month.

From analyzing to setting goals and selecting the right technology, Netcon can help you avoid the pitfalls. Because we’ve done it over and over for diverse enterprises in domains ranging from airports to education, we have developed an eye to spot these digital transformation use cases. And then, we use our know-how of technologies to find the right solution.

You can deploy multiple technologies as the solution for the same use case. But which one is the most suited for your needs? 

We had the option of different technological solutions for the asset tracking digital transformation use case at Sundaram Clayton - barcodes, QR codes, Bluetooth Low Energy, and Real-Time Location Systems to name a few. We chose RFID tags because they suited the application and use case the best.

Emerging Technologies pose a similar question.

Should you consider emerging technologies?

They add value. There’s no doubt about that. But not always. The buzz around AI, the blockchain uproar, and the enterprise 5G networks are all great. And they may add value to some businesses. Whether they benefit your business is what we need to answer. 

Do you need to move to the cloud?

Going the cloud route just because of the hype around it will be a rash decision. Cloud has its benefits, sure. But do you REALLY need the scalability and flexibility of the cloud infrastructure? Because the cloud comes with its pitfalls. 

With the right technologies, you’ll see better outcomes. Next, the culture.

3. Cultural change 

Digital transformation will significantly change the way things happen. To ensure everyone is on the same page about this, you need to train the employees and create a culture of embracing the digital.

Parks had to train their team to learn how these new water flow meters worked and how to operate the digital valves to open or close the water flow. Then came the billing application. It was all digitized - the team had to get used to the new way of working.

We thoroughly helped them with this exercise. 

Train your employees and help them upskill
  • Train them to use the new tech/solution

  • Enroll them in development programs

  • Ask them to take up courses that help them upskill to use the new solutions

As we did with Parks, we always offer to train your staff on the solutions we implement and overlook how they do. 

Develop a culture that embraces digital transformation

Once you’ve gone the digital route, things won’t go back to the old methods. So you need to ensure all of your staff, from all age groups, understand the importance of this change and are comfortable with it. 

Conduct fun workshops and activities that familiarize them with the digital shifts. Educate them as to how it’ll benefit them. Create feedback and suggestions loops. And if someone is struggling with the new technology, create an environment where they aren't hesitant to ask for help. 

With assessment, goals, technology, and culture sorted, let’s move to the implementation part.

Create a strategy to implement the change

Your vision is now ready after the above exercise. Next, you need a plan to implement it effectively and seamlessly. Here’s how we, at Netcon, like to do it.

Get the leadership on board

Executives’ commitment is a must

If the CEOs and executives aren’t convinced and committed, then the plan won’t go through. There won’t be a clear direction of the plan. If there is, the middle-level management and the staff who'll deal with the change aren’t included. 

Lack of collaboration results in failed digital transformation attempts. That's why getting a buy-in from the C-level execs is vital. 

At Netcon, this is our first step after we partner with you on your digital transformation efforts. We always ensure you are thoroughly on board. We do not shy away from having multiple discussions to answer your questions on the technology, the outcomes, and the steps.

We did the same for Parks. After a thorough discussion about the technologies, alternatives, and expected outcomes, Parks executives were aligned with the digital transformation journey we presented to them.

Create a team to execute the job 

If you’re doing it in-house, select the right man for the job. We have dedicated teams for each technology domain to execute projects. If it involves multiple domains, quite often it does, we create a collaborative team. 

The transformational journey for Parks involved various domains - IoT, networks, web applications, data analytics, and more. So, we marshall a team of experts from each domain to work on this project. 

Be agile and adaptive in project management

Agile teams excel at project management. They execute projects in the minimum possible time and disruptions. Here’s how.

Iterate and continuously improve

The agile approach doesn't have long sequential development or execution cycles for the projects. Instead, the teams divide it into short, iterative cycles that allow improvements and changes on the fly.

Once you do this, assessment and feedback on the work done so far becomes easy. It also helps with constant refinement and improvement as the execution continues. 

Build collaborative and cross-functional teams

Teams that collaborate learn faster. Their experience of working with tech from domains outside their expertise grows. Their understanding increases, and they are better aligned with the desired outcomes.

Collaboration between business teams and technical teams is a must. Business teams have clarity on the business outcomes, and the technical team helps them achieve those. A good way to do this is to develop a minimum viable solution, get feedback from the business teams, and then update it along the way.

You've built the teams and created management workflows. Now comes the data.

Deploy data analytics and management

Not valuing data and its visibility is the biggest pitfall of a digital transformation. 

Data visualization tells you everything right or wrong with the IT infrastructure. You’ll miss out on tell-tale signs of infrastructure not functioning correctly if the data analytics are haywire. And in the long run, it’ll create massive workflow disruptions, affecting business continuity and invaluable monetary losses.

When we first installed the flow meters throughout the pipelines for Parks, we realized just how much water leaked out or was stolen or not billed for. The amount of water supplied and the amount of water in the bill the industries received didn’t match. 

To overcome these challenges, we installed flow meters at the inlet of the reservoir tanks and the flow meters reaching the industries. That way, we’d know the locations of the leaks or theft spots.

Flow meters paired with the analytics portal of Parks meant they'd exactly know the time industries demand water in high quantities. Using these analytics and observing trends, Parks can be proactive with their water management tactics. 

The water level sensors would tell the authorities how much water they have in their reservoir tanks. Based on all these data, analytics, and trends, they can better manage their entire water supply operations.

Such elaborate transformation projects are bound to bring challenges along the way. Let’s look at them and learn how to deal with them.

Challenges and how to overcome them

The challenges we'll discuss here are not technical but organizational and security challenges. We can put them into two main categories.

  • Managing the change in culture and processes

  • Cybersecurity 

Manage the change in culture and operations

Digital transformation will make your old processes and operating methods obsolete. And that’ll bring a change in culture and workflows or processes that your staff needs to follow.

Communicate and educate the staff about the change

There’ll be some resistance from your employees. Change is difficult. But here’s how you can turn that resistance into graceful acceptance.

  • Educate them about why change is necessary and what benefits it’ll have

  • Emphasize how it’ll change their role at work

  • Train them to use the new technology and establish communication channels to address their questions

  • Encourage them to give feedback

Deal with the organizational inertia

The bigger the organization, the slower the pace of change. Big organizations have too many people, departments, and stakeholders involved. 

A phased approach can help you increase the pace of change.

Break down the large teams into smaller teams. Interact with them about the change, its necessity, and benefits. It should be easier than talking to all of them at once. 

The next challenge is cybersecurity.

Cybersecurity and security concerns

Digital transformation often involves technologies like networks, IoT, AI, and a lot of processing power and storage to achieve the outcomes. As soon as you go digital, cybersecurity becomes uncompromisable.

Secure your data and privacy

You can deploy multiple measures to achieve this.

Firewalls will protect your infrastructure from unauthorized access. It’ll prevent malicious files, malware, and other threats from entering the systems. Combine firewalls with Intrusion Detection Systems(IDS) and Web Application Firewall(WAF).

Have strict access controls. Allow access based on the roles of your employees. Parks has this built into their web application. Based on your role, you’ll be able to see limited information and have limited controls. Someone at an industrial park level doesn’t need to know the status of the water flow around all the other parks.

Backup your data. If an attack corrupts or deletes your data, your backup will be your rescue. Check regularly if your backup functions. 

If you have too many systems connected to your digital transformation infrastructure, install an Endpoint Detection and Response(EDR) system. It’ll protect all those endpoints from the majority of the cyberattacks.

Despite doing all these, what if an attacker still managed to penetrate your digital space? That’s when incident response plans and disaster recovery help. They give you clear steps of action when an incident strikes. If your operations stop because of the incident, the disaster recovery keeps the business running.

Measures to prevent cybersecurity risks 

Visibility of data, networks, and operations helps you detect anomalies and threats easily. You can go a step further and get vulnerability testing done. It’ll highlight the weak spots in your infrastructure and advise you on how to fix them.

How to know if your digital transformation was a success

Your digital transformation is a success only if the projections before the journey match the Key Performance Indicators(KPIs) and your Return On Investment(ROI) after your journey. These numbers help you gauge the extent of the goals you’ve achieved. 

Select the right Key Performance Indicators(KPIs)

These vary from business to business and organization to organization. But here’s what KPIs for Parks looked like.

  • Amount of water saved 

  • Hours of manual labor saved 

  • Consistency and transparency in billing

The web app of Parks helps them keep an eye on these KPIs.

Calculate the Return On Investment(ROI)

There are many ways to calculate ROI. One of the most widespread methods is to compare the total investment costs in your digital transformation efforts with the projected savings over the next 3-5 years. 

There are many other ways to calculate ROI. These are:

  • Operational efficiency

  • Reduced error rates

  • Downtime

  • Revenue growth

  • Time-to-market

  • Environmental and social impact

Not all of them will be significant to measure ROI on your digital transformation. But based on your use case, you can select the right metrics.

Accelerate your digital transformation with Netcon’s expert guidance

Most organizations know they need to transform themselves and take the digital route to stay relevant and competitive. And with an increasing focus on sustainability and environmental impact, digital transformation can help you achieve those going-green goals.

Parks is a brilliant example of saving water and costs.

Netcon’s team of more than 500 specialists across domains like cloud transformation, data centers, cybersecurity, networks, DevOps, data, AI, and more, will deeply understand your operations and provide you with roadmaps for some of the most complex use cases.

2,00,000+ consulting hours, 17+ years of experience in the technology services industry, and 300+ clients give us an edge. Our customer-first approach guarantees a tailor-made solution for your digital transformation use cases.

Want to craft customized digital transformation roadmaps that address your unique challenges and goals? Netcon can work closely with your team and devise a phased approach to integrate digital capabilities into your operations. Schedule a call today.

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karthikeyan
karthikeyan

Written by

Karthikeyan R

AVP - Technology

As Netcon Technologies' Technology Head, Karthikeyan has spearheaded transformative IT solutions that define client success. With over 17 years of expertise, he has architected and implemented large-scale infrastructure and security projects globally. A mentor to 50+ technical experts, he conceptualizes innovative designs for smart city, transport, communication, and education initiatives, contributing to India's digital transformation. His prowess spans networking, data centers, multi-cloud, security, collaboration, and open-source applications.

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Contact

Email : info@netcon.in

Phone : +91 99524 00291

Social

linkedin
linkedin

Others

IPs & Accelerators

Foward

Together.

Forward together means questioning the status quo. Disrupt. Innovate. Break it, then build it better. We're not passengers; we're the engineers of tomorrow's tech landscape.

Forward together means embracing the collective. Relationships power our servers and drive our solutions. Your wins are our wins, your challenges beckon our brilliance. Collaboration isn't a method; it's our lifeforce.

Forward together, we carry the mantle of sustainability. We don't just occupy space on this Earth; we vow to leave it better. Eco-ethical codes aren't buzzwords; they're in our codebase.

Strive, but never alone. Reach, but always in tandem. At the crossroads of passion and profession, you'll find balance. You'll find life.

When the trek gets tough, lean on the fortitude of the collective. Seek inspiration in our shared purpose, find courage in our unified resolve.

You're no mere employee; you're the next chapter in a storied lineage. You are Netcon. You are the manifesto. So, carry these words. Let them guide, let them ignite.

Forward Together. Welcome to the vanguard of change. Your mission begins now. Welcome to Netcon.

Enter the fold
Subscribe to our newsletter

© Copyright 2024 Netcon Technologies. All rights reserved. All logos and trademarks used belong to their respective owners.