The term Digital Transformation (DX) is used a lot, and for clarity there’s a definition below so that we’re all on the same proverbial page:

Digital transformation involves using digital technologies to remake a process to become more efficient or effective. The idea is to use technology not just to replicate an existing service in a digital form, but to use technology to transform that service into something significantly better.ZDNet

Digital technologies aside, the journey also results in changing business processes and corporate culture also needs to evolve. This is a journey that an increasing number of organisations are undertaking, with the IDC forecasting that worldwide spending on Digital Transformation will be nearly $2 Trillion in 2022 as organisations commit to DX.

The IDC also predicts that by 2020, companies will have allocated capital budget equal to at least 10% of revenue to fuel their digital strategies. So big numbers start to come in to play, the complexity increases as do the risks and importantly there needs to be a return on investment.

Despite the often-vast scale of the projects both in terms of scope and objectives, many organisations adopt the Nike slogan and quite literally JUST DO IT (attempt to do it) without a solid strategy and accompanying plans. This is not the best approach.

Define the journey THEN DO IT

A failed DX initiative can be costly in terms of resource and unrealised benefits so it’s important to define the strategy at the beginning, but the approach should be to take small steps. Transforming everything at once can spread resources too thin and result in a significant change in a short period of time, which can have a detrimental impact.

Furthermore, unlike a traditional transformation initiative, it’s difficult to plan the whole DX journey and impending changes at the outset. Technology will continue to evolve but so will your processes.

Do not define the journey on Excel

Considering the scale of many digital transformation programmes and the multifaceted nature of the workstreams it’s important to use the right tool for the job. As an example, planning an Enterprise migration to Office 365, is a complex undertaking and you need to know exactly what steps to take when to perform them, and the resources required to perform them.

You also need to be fully aware of all the inevitable interdependencies and be able to identify bottlenecks prior to them morphing into a significant issue that impacts your timelines.

Despite the vision to modernise through digital technologies, many teams have no option but to utilise solutions that don’t offer the degree of visibility and control that’s required to run a complex programme. I’ve encountered plans on Excel, PowerPoint and even on Microsoft Paint which despite enabling creative freedom, isn’t the most practical choice.

Deploy Microsoft Project Online/Project for the Web as a precursor to Office 365

Microsoft Project Online/Project for the Web is available within Office 365 and can be rolled out to the PMO or Transformation team prior to the wider Office 365 rollout, something which an increasing number of customers are starting to do. This would provide the team(s) with the correct solution for managing a complex transformation programme.

Through Microsoft PPM the PMO can plan the Office 365 Enterprise deployment at the appropriate level of detail using Microsoft Project, allocate the required resources based on availability and increase the visibility of the overall Digital Transformation or individual workstreams through the Project Centre within Project Online, or via Power BI or the recently introduced Roadmaps solution.

Next Steps

If you would like to discuss how Microsoft Project Online could benefit you and your organisation, contact us to speak with an expert today.