Developing an Integrated Digital Technology Strategy

What’s your digital technology strategy? While businesses from large to small use technology in almost every level of business, not many business think in terms of an integrated digital technology strategy. The analysts at McKinsey & Company developed an digital technology matrix that can help businesses think about how technology is integrated at every level of the business.[1]

According to McKinsey & Company an effective strategy can help business realize cost-savings that range from 20 percent to 36 percent. Most companies fail to take advantage of the full possibilities for digital technologies by narrowing the focus to a handful of technologies that may even compete within the business. From focusing primarily on distribution channels like social networking to focusing primarily on security strategies some companies may miss the big picture. Here is a helpful chart that McKinsey & Company analysts use to help companies see the big picture:

digital technology strategy

You’ll note the four quadrants in the center of the diagram. This highlights the value added by an integrated digital technology strategy:

  • enhanced connectivity
  • automation of manual tasks
  • improved decision making
  • product or service innovation

By stepping back and considering the overall strategy, you may discover how specific technologies that serve one aspect of the business could be leveraged to serve other aspects. Consider the use of digital apps. Most business seek to develop digital apps as a point of contact with customers or potential customers, but app technology can be applied to HR, collaboration, procurement and much more. Some businesses have developed applications that give each department access to specific aspects of the customer data stream: marketing, customer service, quality control, finance and even operations can utilize specific aspect of the customer data stream to improve their service delivery.

For some businesses an integrated strategy will be disruptive, challenging current process and cultural norms. In the long run, it could make a major impact on improving your overall bottom-line.

[1] ’Tunde Olanrewaju and Paul Willmott. “Finding Your Digital Sweet Spot.” November 2013 <http://www.mckinsey.com/insights/business_technology/finding_your_digital_sweet_spot>

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