The process always begins with data, which is the basis for any successful digital transformation: all data sources – both internal and external – must be tapped, and the data must be structured, integrated, and sorted in suitable data spaces.
Step 1 – Business strategy and applications
The first step revolves around business strategy and applications, and proceeds as follows: the company must develop a vision for the digital future, break it down into data-driven applications, evaluate these applications in terms of their technical and organizational feasibility and potential quantitative and qualitative benefits, and embark upon an implementation roadmap or initial implementation projects.
Step 2 – Generating knowledge
An appropriate solution is then defined by focusing on a specific use case from the road map created in the first step, which involves selecting suitable procedures and populating them with the right data. Relevant data are either drawn from existing sources or curated specifically for the procedure as necessary.
Step 3 – Applying knowledge
In this step, solutions are implemented into processes in the form of technical prototypes in order to test their usefulness and functionality. Here, success depends on the involvement and consultation of end users, customers, and employees – in other words, it is essential to consider the human factor.
Step 4 – Decision-making guidelines
The final step is about making concrete decisions, such as determining the cost of the solution, defining the business case or a suitable business model, developing decision-making guidelines for company management, and finally reviewing and reassessing the decisions made in step 1 as required.