I spent the last week at conferences looking at technology and digital futures in asset intensive industries. I am continually amazed at the board range of technologies that are hitting us and our lack of strategic approaches to them.

Growth due to population and client growth has masked the increasing decline in productivity within many businesses. This loss of productivity will see those organisations at risk of challenge by alternative products and providers.

As pointed out by Stuart Hartley of EY, most organisations are “doing” digital but don’t know how to “be” digital. Most businesses have “digital focused projects” but need to move to “digital investment programs” and then to a “digital DNA operating models”.

  • Don’t commence any digital project unless there is a digital strategy in place – Most organisations do not understand the capability of their existing systems, let alone the impact of disparate digital projects;
  • Ensure your digital strategy is an integrated part of your overall organisations strategic business plan – It is difficult enough to deliver a single strategic plan, let alone multiple plans. Digital strategies need to be owned by the organisation and not just the IT or project team;
  • Organisations need to invest in increasing the digital knowledge and understanding of all employees – To gain a digital DNA, everyone in the organisation needs to comfortable with digital change and understand the thinking behind the strategy.

David Nixon is a Principal with NixonClarity, who provides advisory and strategic planning services across a wide range of businesses. David attended the Asset Management Council in Hobart and Digital utilities Conference in Melbourne last week.