Even if the digital transformation strategies are now required more than ever, their implementation needs to be refined. Let us see how the human-centric design thinking approach can help rethink this transformation
The disruptive effects of the pandemic are already unfolding across businesses. Companies are finding it hard to maintain a balance between the future vision of digital transformation and immediate urgency of consumer-critical operations. On one hand, digitalizing their core processes is going to help them attain the productivity they desperately need, while on the other hand they cannot ignore the expenditure of resources that can be employed to work around the immediate challenges. Surely, when times get confusing, there is an approach that can help with figuring out the actual problem and thus the solutions – Design Thinking Approach. For both, the businesses already working with digital transformation services and the ones planning on it, some evolved strategies are needed to make the process more practical, outcome-oriented, and productive. Let us take a look at how Design Thinking is going to help with this evolution.
Rethinking Digital Transformation
It’s Design Thinking, so let’s empathize. There is an unprecedented health crisis that is not letting the businesses return to their normal ways. Working with remote teams was more of an eventual possibility that turned into a forced reality overnight. This raises some obvious problems:
- The delivery processes are vulnerable and every now and then a new pain point rises.
- Companies want to spend their resources more on what is absolutely aligned to their business as they cannot afford to “expand their vision” as of now
Hence, even if the digital transformation strategies are now required more than ever, their implementation needs to be refined. So, let us take our human-centric approach and rethink the transformation:
- Motivation: We’ll have to begin by focusing on the need behind employing digital transformation services. Companies cannot let any solution get bigger than the business. Their digital transformation strategies don’t need to work for the entire industry that they are serving. It should only work for their business. Climate change, Governance Policies, Health safety measures will all factor in, and rightfully so. Design Thinking can help companies have a deeper understanding of customer demands and their internal requirements. This will help the company look beyond immediate challenges and work towards a more motivated and purposeful transformation of business.
- Simplicity and Visibility: Once the motivation is defined, companies need to ideate over each step. An understanding of what’s exactly going to happen is necessary. Multiple entities, workstreams, and a huge number of projects make it hard for the management to seek accountability. Therefore, qualitative and quantitative analysis of transformation strategies needs to be carried out. What frameworks are we using, why are we employing certain architectures, and which associate skill gaps are absolutely necessary to be filled – these questions will need to be asked during ideation and brainstorming. Thus, the prototypes built will be responsive to feedback. This will also go in favor of business agility. Simpler and more transparent prototypes for digital transformation solutions would be more reliable both for the company and the customers.
- Inclusive Growth: Business transformation is an emotional process. A complete makeover of the core processes will require empathy from all fronts. Associates, who might feel forced to learn certain digital tools should be able to voice their feedback. Leaders will have to encourage an environment where this can happen. Only then the teams will be able to understand the need for the digital technologies being implemented. This might be difficult at the beginning, given the urgency of the situation. However, this will be a more sustained transformation that will help the companies in the long run.
ConclusionThe vision that most companies had for digital transformation solutions couldn’t possibly foresee the present crisis we are dealing with. Evolution is required for a transformation that is functional for the post-pandemic disarray. Design Thinking Approach will help the companies rethink and rewrite this transformation story.
Meeting the demands of new-age customers was the only way to maintain the benchmarks of revenue generation that our client had set in all this time. iauro’s own experience in the ITES helped them to objectively deal with these challenges
Keeping up with New Age Technologies can be overwhelming for ITES businesses. It is challenging to choose the right technology stack for service quality, consistently upgrade associate skills, and to ensure all this is done in the least amount of time possible. Such challenges can only be curbed by those with a real will to serve their customers.
Our client, one of the biggest names in information technology in Asia-Pacific, is one such organization. Serving globally for more than 30 years now, they have always been determined to evolve their strategies and processes for the benefit of their customers. The New Age Technology riddle wasn’t anything new to them. They understood the necessity of employing new paradigms that best met customer demand and internal growth. This helps them strategize the future course of action which included:
- Identifying technologies that would speed up deliveries
- Increasing the productivity of every project even in the terms of knowledge contexts and reusable modules
- Monitoring and Planning associate skills to help them grow consistently
- Devising an infrastructure that automates all these tasks in the future
Meeting the demands of new-age customers was the only way to maintain the benchmarks of revenue generation that our client had set in all this time. iauro’s own experience in the ITES helped them to objectively deal with these challenges.
Building a New Age Solution
iauro and the client brainstormed and formulated a plan that would help us realize the client’s vision. Each step was perfectly calculated and here’s how the journey proceeded:
- Beginning with the Empathy Route: The Design Thinking approach had to be the starting point. Before starting our work on the solution, we really had to understand the problem.
- Empathize: We stepped into the customer’s mind. Started with gathering insights from customer’s experiences with our client’s services. We also took a deeper dive into the internal environment of the client organization. The idea was to understand the motivations and contributions of the associates.
- Define: Information gathered from this research helped us understand that this cannot be treated as a single problem. However, it all fell under the umbrella of “dealing with new-age technology demands” there were multiple dimensions to it. We needed kanban engines to streamline deliveries, rating, and gamification of associates and technology stacks, consistent feedback mechanisms, and customized marketplaces for future reusability. In short, we didn’t just need a solution, but a “supersolution”
- Ideation: Once we had defined the problem, we started working on translating the business vision into the technicalities of the solution. This included picking up the architectures that would help with the custom market places, technologies that would fuel the kanban engines, processes that were required for gamification and feedback, etc.
- Prototype and Test: While we’ll discuss the prototype in detail in a while, we would like to list the specific technologies that we picked for our supersolution. The DevOps Engine and the Microservices Architecture were necessary for the core. AI/ML added a layer of intelligence. The cloud containers essentially helped with performance speed and fault tolerance. We created an MVP (Minimal Viable Product) and put it in a feedback loop for around 10k users. This helped us improve the final solution that was delivered.
- DevOps Engine: Taking the discussion about the prototype in more detail, let start with the role and necessity of the DevOps Engine.
- DevOps Automation has the necessary features for agility and security. Therefore, a DevOps engine was necessary for the platform
- The engine automated the redundant tasks and encouraged the innovative ones
- Continuous Delivery and Continuous Integration is a fast as well as a secure way of delivering the services to the customers
- The DevOps strategies also facilitated with smart project planning and associate upskilling
- Microservice Architecture: The microservices architecture was necessary for ensuring the scalability of the solutions. Since the solutions would be handled by a large number of users both internally and externally, the scalability factor had to be impeccable. Microservices also helped with creating the customized marketplace because of their reusable nature.
- AI/ML Backbone: AI/ML added a layer of smartness in our supersolution. It helped the client understand the pain point for every individual associate skilling. The incoming projects could be profiled for reusable modules and team assignments.
Outcomes of the Supersolution
The super solution we built with the client was on-point. It enabled the client to meet the New Age Technology demands by:
- Enhancing the delivery speed to customers by 30%
- Curating well-judged tech stacks for incoming projects
- Finding the most suitable associates for every project and thus saving the development cost by 25%
- Identifying reusable modules from the custom marketplace to bring down capital expenditure by 50%
- Harboring a large number of new projects from customers globally and maintaining the loyalty from the existing ones