Digital Transformation is Happening Now: Is Your Board Ready?

The board of directors must understand what innovations its company should adopt and what it will mean for the company.

To assess this, several questions may be asked.

These can include:

  • Is the board ready to implement sweeping and significant changes?
  • How will this digital transformation impact the company culture, the employees, and its customers?
  • What benefits will the company get from these changes?
  • Will new employees need to be hired to make these changes?

You will also need to assess if your company is ready.

  • Is your company prepared for new technology?
  • Do your employees have the skill sets necessary to move forward?
  • Are your executives and managers confident in their employees and the success of the new technologies you are considering?
  • Will everyone be able to work together to facilitate the new changes?

The board of directors plays a crucial role in implementing any digital changes.

  • It will want to thoughtfully consider what innovative technologies to adopt and the proper strategies necessary to accomplish an effective company-wide roll-out.
  • It will also want to assess how forward-thinking they want to be: would they rather tread lightly, adopting new methods carefully and slowly, or be boldly progressive and transform all at once?
  • The board will also need to ensure that all digital transformation aligns with the company’s business strategy and corporate governance.

It will take a strong board of directors to lead the charge for your company’s digital transformation, and it must come from the top. Resilience will be important as any change will come with its growing pains.

Here are specific ways your board can prepare itself to make these changes:

  1. Keep in touch.

As new initiatives arise, your board of directors cannot lead that charge if they don’t understand it themselves. Keep in touch with ongoing trends and ensure that your executives are too.

  1. Discuss with executives and managers. 

There may be gaps in your company’s talent or knowledge. Necessary training may need to be provided to bring current employees up to speed, or new employees with specific skill sets may need to be hired. Ensure that hiring managers are aware of what skills will be needed going forward and explore ways those gaps can be eliminated.

  1. Explore what is available. 

It can be difficult incorporating new technologies into your daily life, but you have to get comfortable if you want your company to follow. Your experience with these technologies can also be valuable as you may get some insight into the human side of implementing.

  1. Open up communication between technology leaders and the board of directors. 

The technology leaders of your company should regularly present to the board. These are the people you are trusting to stay informed on the latest innovations, and this open line of communication should be their opportunity to present their findings and recommendations.

  1. Explore outside resources. 

Your board of directors can learn about new technology initiatives through blogs, podcasts, newsletters, and online courses. Your board may also want to consider attending a conference for directors and executives that addresses digital transformation.

  1. Reconsider your working environment. 

If your company generally works in small groups, divisions, or isolation, it might be time to reconsider your working environment. Assessing your company’s technology needs will require collaboration. You may want to consider having more communication between groups, divisions, or employees and/or having individuals connect more with one another.

  1. Remain transparent. 

As your board moves forward with a major change, communicate with stakeholders, employees, and customers. They will be most affected by any digital transformation, so they must be prepared and consulted. Your board also may want to consider using technology–Zoom, social media, or some other way–to have these conversations.

  1. Stay in touch. 

New technologies quickly come and go. Your board needs to be aware of ongoing trends, and it needs to stay in touch with ongoing trends. Your board must commit to staying on top of the newest changes together.

As your board considers and responds to your company’s technological needs, it may prove difficult.

No change is easy, especially when it may require a total transformation of your company’s way it usually does things.

With that in mind, resilience is the key. Understand that there will be difficulties along the way, but your company will come out stronger and remain competitive in this day’s digital age.