Milestones, budgets and responsibilities: What is done by who and when?
The successful digitalisation of a company requires strategic planning and long-term thinking. Three basic steps are useful here, i.e. orientation, strategy and implementation.
This process first identifies the available financial and time-related resources as well as the area with the most urgent need for digitalisation measures. The second step analyses the optimum IT products and service providers for the company. The third and, for the time being, last step is the integration of new systems and processes.
Service offers, support programmes or other advisory services are available in order to support companies on their digital journey.
After identifying the first starting points for digitalisation during the orientation phase, the strategy phase is then the stage of concrete project planning. This step identifies the measures that are worth-while for the company and the aims to be achieved by these measures. Furthermore, it also determines the project to be implemented first, the sequence of further measures to follow and how to measure the success of the individual steps.
The strategy phase thus defines concrete aims: Who will implement what, in what way, and by when? The best way for this is to set up a project plan with realistic milestones, budgets and responsibilities in order to ensure optimum process management. This must include everybody involved in the process, not just executive management. Employees who are directly affected by digitalisation measures require continuous learning and further qualification measures which should be taken into consideration when planning the project. Furthermore, planning should allow for sufficient pilot and test phases in order to avoid unforeseen consequences of introducing new systems and processes.
Before small and medium-sized enterprises plan and implement digitalisation measures, they should examine whether their project can be supported with innovation vouchers, grants or other means of assistance, such as professional development schemes and coaching. The digital pilots offer their advisory competence also for this purpose. Even though each company needs its own specific digitalisation strategy, practical examples from other companies can provide useful hints and tips.