Digital adoption managers are taking digital transformation to the next level!

Mark Talmage-Rostron
June 23, 2021 · 7 min read

With many workers struggling to cope with the latest digital technologies and skills gaps appearing, it’s now a case of adapt or die

It seems not so long ago that the term ‘digital transformation’ took the big leap from buzz word to the most important words uttered around almost every global boardroom. Online has become the holy grail and companies have most certainly woken up to the onset and awakening of the digital revolution.

Those who are doing things right, are now most certainly riding the digital wave to continued success. Never more in the history of business has ‘adapt or die’ been more pertinent as 27% of companies say that digital transformation is a matter of survival and 55% of companies without a digital transformation strategy believe that they have less than a year before they start to lose market share.

But to take advantage of the clear-cut benefits of digital adoption, the workforce must be properly skilled to adapt to the technology. If not, organizations need to put plans in place to have staff upskilled or reskilled pronto or risk losing valuable ground to their rivals who are forging ahead unabated.

This is where universities, and especially online universities, come into play as they provide digital transformation courses that allow workers to upskill whilst still holding down a job at the same time.

McKinsey’s research indicates that by 2030, the skills needed in the workforce will be radically different from those valued today. Such a transformation must be met with appropriate training and learning strategies. And that, in turn, means organizations should care even more about the digital transformation of learning.

“At least 40% of all businesses will die in the next 10 years if they don’t figure out how to change their entire company to accommodate new technologies.” – John Chambers, Executive Chairman and CEO, Cisco Systems

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Why digital transformation is important

Forbes denotes that now has never been a more perfect time to develop and act on a watertight digital transformation strategy as COVID-19 continues to leave a wake of destruction behind it, making many traditional business practices obsolete. The fact that the rule book of ways, places, and times of working has 100% been thrown out of the window, has prompted organizations to look inwardly and evaluate just how well prepared and equipped they are to embrace alternative ways of working.

Forbes goes on to say that 70% of companies either have a digital transformation strategy in place or are working on one, whilst 21% believe that they’ve reached their Nirvana and already completed digital transformation. 60% of those companies have already created new business models.

But it has not been plain sailing for organizations adopting this new way of working. Tech savvy individuals in almost all organizations were quick to welcome digital transformation with open arms, but, with anything new, there was a fair amount of resistance from other sectors within the business and that’s where digital transformation fails.

The tail can’t wag the dog

As they say in the classics, resistance is futile, so those that opt to go against the grain can expect to see their careers severally derail. Especially when you consider that 39% of executives believe their companies will get the most value from digital transformation initiatives in three to five years, and 70% of digital transformations fail due mostly to resistance from employees.

CIO’s annual State of the CIO Survey asked about skills needed for digital transformation. The top responses were strategy building (40 percent), project management (32 percent) and business relationship management, user support/training, success measurement and risk management, all at 25 percent, respectively. Other business-oriented skills that IT leaders are seeking include product management, financial/cost management and vendor management.

So, who is going to take the lead in companies to bring everyone on board and upskill them to make sure that they can keep pace with rapid advancements in digital technology? About 40% of companies have dedicated digital transformation teams in place, but it has become clear that a specialist is required to take their transformation initiatives to the next level and get buy in from all staff.

Enter the digital adoption manager, a role that if they don’t already have one of these people on the books, organizations need to start interviewing for, fast. This digital transformation specialist is responsible for, primarily, ensuring that the process of bringing and employing new technologies is a smooth and successful one.

Cypher Learning reports that said person’s main responsibility is to ensure that the process of bringing onboard and employing new technologies is a smooth and successful one. If you stop to think about it, it’s no surprise that IT has happily taken a backseat to these specialists, as employees are now exposed to more apps, platforms, and digital systems than ever before. It’s no wonder then that people are experiencing technology fatigue.

7 good reasons why organizations should employ a Digital Adoption Manager

According to Lineup systems, new technologies lead to new opportunities – but only if the company is poised to harness them. Therefore, a digital adoption manager is crucial to help a business reach its goals. If there are those that are not quite sure why they should employ a Digital Adoption Manager, here are 7 good reasons why.

1. You’ve recently replaced a major system

84% of companies fail at digital transformation, according to Forbes. A Digital Adoption Manager can help them avoid this common blunder. They oversee the entire adoption process of new tech, including the human element, to ensure it is seamless and successful.


2. You’re not seeing the system ROI you expected 

Many organizations purchase shiny new tech but fail to master or even explore all its features, therefore missing out on its full benefits. A Digital Adoption Manager can help them better understand and take advantage of their systems to get the greatest ROI possible.


3. Too many training sessions booked 

Digital Adoption Managers can organize and execute personalized demos for each team within a company in a relevant, engaging way. This will help staff become more productive as they work with various systems. They can also onboard new hires.


4. Gaps in the business process 

A Digital Adoption Manager specializes in identifying and addressing these issues. They will analyze organizational workflows to see where productivity could be improved and help ensure technology truly drives the business forward.


5. Departments are using the same systems differently, resulting in disparate data 

When silos develop within organizations, teams lose visibility into what’s working and what’s not, and data integration and quality can become compromised. A Digital Adoption Manager acts as a bridge between different business functions – for example, IT and finance – to help CIOs gain insight into how systems are being used throughout a company.


6. You need someone to evaluate the latest tools and processes 

It can be a challenge to keep up with ever-evolving digital trends when your to-do list is a mile long, but a Digital Adoption Manager can take this task off IT’s plate.


7. Overcoming internal complaints 

Employee buy-in is critical when it comes to implementing new technology, but to gain it, employees must be able to trust that they’ve truly been set up for success. A Digital Adoption Manager will listen to concerns and take steps to address them by ensuring that employees receive proper training and are empowered to use the systems required in their roles.

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Upskill or put your career in reverse gear

Regardless of having someone to hold their hands during the digital transformation process, staff of companies do need to ramp up their digital skillsets to cope with the new demands placed on them when it comes to technology transformation.

The world university ranking maintains that universities can embrace digital transformation and help their students do the same through tailored curriculum. It also went on to say that universities will have a massive role to play in providing upskilling and reskilling to adapt to the demands of digital transformation and adopt new technologies. In fact, the World Economic Forum says that 54% of the workforce will require significant reskilling and upskilling by 2022.

That’s where Nexford university comes into its own. There are courses on the Fundamentals of Digital TransformationBBA in Digital Transformation, BBA in Artificial Intelligence, and MBA in Artificial Intelligence.

We also offer an MS is Digital Transformation, for Post-Graduate study.

The time for change is now and the message is very clear. It’s adapt or die. This is the mantra of digital Darwinism where the evolution of technology is forcing organizations to employ change management or perish. As Jack Welch, CEO of General Electric once succinctly wrote, “If the rate of change on the outside exceeds the rate of change on the inside, the end is near.”

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About the author
Mark Talmage-Rostron
Mark Talmage-Rostron

Mark is a college graduate with Honours in Copywriting. He is the Content Marketing Manager at Nexford, creating engaging, thought-provoking, and action-oriented content.

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