Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Targeting Your New Digital Presence

Organizations know they need to have a digital presence that will be different than "business as usual"  See ,if you need a reason to start your digital journey. There are a number of activities that will help you move forward. One activity that really helps organizations is to develop a target business model and a supporting set of processes, systems, resources, emerging technologies, and data lakes. Along with the set of target crisp models, organizations will also target soft models of new skills, and change management approaches. Listed below are the typical targets to set or update when going digital.

Multiple Targets to Hit

Business Models:

If you are a start up or your industry is under duress, creating a new business model is the absolute starting point that will result in a business plan that could be supported quickly without the deep infrastructural supports and multitudes of support staff as digital levels the playing field.

If you have an established business model and there is some evidence that change needs to occur (customer journey maps, competitive comparisons, new entrants), then an update to the target business model would be in order, skipping this step is risky unless you are in a safe harbor with little chance for competition or customer rebellion. The business model should include alternative scenarios, goal packets and governance constraints that can have significant impact on the outcomes.

Processes & Systems:

Once there is a target business model, then a portfolio of processes, linked partner/customer processes and support systems can be modeled and mapped. This target can be accelerated and enhanced by cloud based modeling software from either the enterprise architecture or process modeling technical categories. This step will be more valuable and accurate if customer journey maps are available.


The resulting target processes and systems will likely have resources supporting and changing them. A target set of people, machines, on premise and cloud based services/apps. With the advent of the internet of things (IoT) and cognitive computing, there may be more devices and smart personal assistants/agents.

New Technologies:

The target business models, scenarios, goals and governance constraints plus their associated processes/systems and resources will give hints as to what new technologies are likely to be included as targets. If they point to a better customer experience, there will be a collection of likely technologies. If they point to faster speed or higher levels of complete decision and prediction, then another set of technologies will be beneficial. Keep in mind that the target models could point to a large number of new technologies for your organization and plans will have to be laid to obviate the risk of each individually or in concert.

Data Lakes:

There is a big demand for more data implied with all of the above and new data sources must be planned to support the new targets. There are new forms of data emerging particularly when new patterns or shifting goals are a key ingredient in the new targets. Since data fuels opportunities, there may be a need to capture more data than the target indicate. Some of the new technologies generate new and large streams of data and emerging discovery will beget the need for more data to gather rapidly.


The new targets will imply new skills that will need to be added to existing personnel as well as skills needed to be on-boarded with new people. New skills are especially a needed for new resources and technologies. You may have to temporarily augment your staff with outside skills until a learning curve can be absorbed. Quite often outside change agents can be helpful as hires or rentals.

Change Management:

We all know that the more is communicated about the targets areas, the better the result. Understanding how much change is needed in each area of your organization will have to be assessed and different approaches may have to applied to ease the inevitable imagined pain of change. The real pain can be softened by applying different change techniques including education, training and communication methods.

Net; Net: 

Going digital is a great opportunity for organizational introspection even if there are few resulting changes. I think it is highly unlikely that this digital presence wave will leave things the same for most organizations. This is as big of a change that I could imagine for surviving organizations.

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