Is Learning the missing link in Digital Transformation?


Theunprecedented times we are living in today, ushered in by a global pandemic,have revolutionized the way businesses are being conducted andhow! Everything from working to learning to doing is now enabled bytechnology and tools.

But isthis how Digital Transformation was meant to pan out? What about our readinessand the timelines we had laid down to roll it out at OUR pace?

Covid-19did what most businesses couldn’t do themselves. It created a new order, a newnormal with DIGITAL at its heart.               

The Digital Transformation Disruption

Even though 87% of companies believe digital will disrupt their industry, only 44% are adequately prepared for projected disruption due todigital trends.

This ‘preparedness’ was overridden by corona virus, which compelled businesses worldwide to go digital, making ‘remote’ the middle name for all things working, doing and learning. Employers and employees alike had to learn and adopt to new tools and technologies along the way affecting efficiency, productivity and team morale.

“There is a tendency to see digitaltechnology as an opportunity or choice. However, the mounting pressures of arapidly shifting business landscape are turning digital from a choice into animperative. The longer a business waits, the more marginalized it will become.”- John Hagel, Co-Chairman of the Centre for the Edge at Deloitte

While the reasons for the sluggishtransition to Digital Transformation have been varied, on one hand it’s the lackof understanding of what it encompasses and entails and on other it’s thenature of the industry and the workforce (read: traditional, blue collar), thenumber one limiting factor across the spectrum has been looking at techadoption as a ‘risk and cost’ vs. ‘value and differentiator’.

Whichever way you choose to look atit, Digital Transformation is here to stay.

Connecting the dots between Digital Transformation andLearning

The goal of digital transformationis to use technology to solve traditional problems. Drill this down and youwill uncover areas where the rubber meets the road – it’s about integratingtechnology into the very fabric of the business – seamlessly. When done right, digital transformation allowscompanies to provide unprecedented value to all stakeholders.

But how do you do it for a journey(yes, Digital Transformation is a journey, not a destination) with multiple movingparts?

The answer is in the details. Orrather, in L&D.

Learning and training is the missing link to Digital Transformation as it enables smooth transition to a tech-enabled way of (work) life.

  • TheCulture Pillar

“The big moment for an organizationis when they have embraced the fact that digital transformation isn’t atechnical issue, but a cultural change.” - Ian Rogers, Chief Digital Officer atLVMH

Culture dictates what happens and does not happen in a company, it’s as simple as that! Being the shared ethos of an organization, it lays down the framework on how the business will be done, how people will co-work, what working style will be accepted etc. oftentimes without an explicit definition of the ground rules.

So much is the importance of thecompany culture that it can work for or against the business. It’s no surprisesthen that 62%of organizations consider their company culture the number one hurdle intheir journey.

To develop a culture conducive to digital transformation, company-wide transparency, communication, collaboration, development and mind shift is essential.L&D plays an integral role in this by identifying the culture and leadership competencies that support accelerated change. A culture of continuous learning, for one, encourages self-paced, self-driven training for employees. A critical piece to this puzzle is buy-in from the top management. Every executive and leader must play a role in championing digital change and uniting digital transformation with the company’s bigger picture. After all, Digital Transformation is a top-down initiative requiring change at all levels of an organization and can’t be done in siloed environments.

  • ThePeople Pillar

“Transformation is not something you can do for somebody. You have to do it with somebody.”-Nigel Vaz, Global CEO at Publicis Sapient

While Digital Transformation strategy is about technology, it doesn’t amount to much without the workforce embracing it. Which is why due emphasis needs to be placed on killing people to leverage new opportunities brought in by technologies and tools.

71%of leaders cite the workforce as either very or extremely important insupporting their digital transformation strategy.

For Learning and Training, theneedle needs to move from being reactive to proactive. It's no longer about closinga skill gap or solving a performance problem, it’s about empowering employeesto become a strategic enabler for the business.L&D needs to plan fortraining interventions that inform and educate employees about the evolvingdigital landscape, ensure they have the competency for new software andprocesses, and can stay skilled according to emerging trends and evolutionsfrom a future-proofing perspective.

  • TheChange Pillar

“The key todigital transformation is re-envisioning and driving change in how the companyoperates.” – Capgemini Consulting

The only thing that remainsconstant is change. Which is why L&D needs to be immersed in theorganization’s strategic and operating priorities, so it can provide practical,meaningful programs that support and drive change.The lack of which will notonly lead to the failure of digital transformation but will prevent thebusiness from achieving a competitive advantage.

With regard to bringing aboutchange management, merely telling your people about it isn’t going to help thembecome change agents. But equipping them with the necessary tools andtechniques will enable the alignment of the company’s culture, values, people,and behaviors — to encourage the desired results.

At the end of the day, Organization Culture, People and Change Management need to work together to bring about Digital Transformation as each acts as a feed forward loop to lay the ground work for the next.

Join us for an insightful webinar “Learning and Digital Transformation:Connecting the dots” on May 5, 3PM IST to learn:

  • The what, why and how of Digital Transformation(DX)
  • Importance of L&D in DX
  • Relooking at organizational L&D from the POVof: Employee Development, Change Management, Organizational Culture

Bookyour seat now

UpsideLMS | AI powered LMS | Free Trial