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Digital transformation won’t succeed without a focus on customer experience

Published on 18 Aug 2020

Not all organizations get digital transformation right. It requires an effective digital strategy, fundamental organizational change, and massive investment into the acquisition and integration of digital technologies and skills.

However, it’s not always the obvious challenges that lead to failure, studies show that the priorities in digital transformation are skewed heavily towards improving business processes, and not enough priority is given to customer experience.

We have selected three articles that look into the value of prioritizing customer experience in digital transformation efforts, where digital customer experience transformation is now a key driver.

The final comment is by Brent Haumann who reiterates the importance of keeping customer needs at the center of the organization’s digital transformation strategy and why creating engaging experiences is the ultimate goal. Haumann further explains how a digital maturity benchmarking exercise can assist by focusing the team’s attention on customer interactions, rather than business processes.

Let’s discuss how a digital communication maturity framework can help drive your organization’s digital customer experience transformation efforts

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Becoming future ready with CX-led digital transformation

This article highlights the vital role both customer experience (CX) and employee experience play in an organization’s digital transformation strategy and ultimately, its future success. And that in order to deliver the intuitive, personalized experiences and connected journeys today’s customers expect, organizations need to adopt an innovation mindset.

“89% of organizations agree that becoming an intelligence-driven enterprise is a big part of the digital transformation journey.” – a survey by Avanade.

But, there is no doubt that digital transformation is a challenge for most. According to the same survey, “43% of organizations are becoming fatigued with their digital transformation efforts.” The main barriers, according to the article, are “skills and talent, integration between new and existing systems, siloed and unusable data”.

There is a big focus on the important role employees play in an organization’s digital transformation, due to the number of skills required along the transformation journey. Collaboration is also key – strategists, designers, technologists and data scientists need to work together to ensure successful implementation of their organization’s digital transformation strategy. Read further to learn how new technologies, as well as a single customer view, can help brands improve employee experience and ultimately, deliver a powerful customer experience. 


14 Ways To Enable Digital Customer Experience Transformation

In this article, it states that “to effectively transform the customer experience, it’s important to also focus on digital transformation.” This emphasizes the importance of making customer experience a priority – organizations that do so, deliver “digital-first but not digital-only multichannel experiences.” 

It is mentioned that successful organizations focus their digital transformation efforts on three areas in their business, namely:  “customer experiences, operational processes and business models.” And to derive value from these efforts, it is essential that organizations also focus on digital customer experience transformation. 

There is a list of “14 things you can learn from digital customer experience transformation leaders,” they are: continually keep the customer in mind; personalize your customer experiences; embrace and manage change; gain and maintain internal alignment; eliminate silos; accelerate your speed to insights; prioritize and digitize relevant customer journeys; enable seamless, omnichannel customer experiences; integrate and digitize processes; let customers interact on their preferred device; align key performance indicators to desired business outcomes; assess your customer experience operating model; think by design and keep it human. Read the article to find out more.


  • Publisher: Forbes
  • Access: Public
  • Download: None

Understanding how digital transformation engages customers

This article refers to a recent article by Forbes, in which it is said that – “84% of organizations’ digital transformation projects fail,’ and the same write-up states that this failure is due to a lack of customer-centricity, which can be solved by improving customer experience.

The article has a strong focus on user experience (UX), which the authors believe is often missing from customer experience (CX). The difference between them is that customer experience involves a focus on measurement (involves Net Promotor Score, conversion rates, bounce rates, etc) and is based in marketing, whereas UX is based in psychology – it seeks to understand customers and then design based on this knowledge.

“A skilled team that understands proper research methods and how to apply them is critical for developing a true understanding of the customer and their needs” – Rich Warnaka, a certified usability analyst. 

Companies need both CX and UX experts, but this isn’t enough to enable successful digital transformation – to succeed, CX/UX teams need to be supported, leveraged and matured. Read further to learn more. The article also addresses the biggest pitfalls for UX/CX teams, namely: lack of integration, governance and championship, and discover what a mature UX/CX team looks like when driving digital transformation – the key takeaway being that “the UX/CX stack needs to precede the technology stack”


The ultimate goal is to create engaging experiences

Often, the idea of embarking on a digital transformation journey is a daunting one. It’s a massive undertaking, and it’s hard to know where to start.

The success of a digital transformation strategy means keeping customer needs at the center – involving customers in the design of new communication journeys, and measuring the right outcomes. The ultimate goal is to create engaging experiences for customers. 

This is when a digital maturity benchmarking exercise around communication is useful – it focuses on the team’s attention on improving customer interactions, rather than business processes. 

Getting the communication touchpoints in the customer journey right, means understanding how customers engage and how they feel when interacting with the company. It also involves designing journeys that speak directly to what customers want. This is key to delivering a great customer experience.

Striata’s digital communication maturity models provide a framework to help you understand where your organization is on the maturity scale and to map the next steps in the digital transformation of your business’s communication strategy.

While the indicators may be similar, no business will be at the same level of maturity across all the dimensions. We customize our tool to identify the stages that your business is at, across dimensions such as vision, people, process, technology and customer experience.

Once we have established your digital maturity levels, we use this tool to set a digital communications transformation plan, making it easier to set goals, create roadmaps and measure your success.

Brent Haumann

MD, Africa

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