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Digital transformation has become a top priority for businesses in recent years, and the COVID-19 pandemic has only accelerated the need for small businesses to embrace digital technologies. With the sudden shift to remote work and the emergence of artificial intelligence (AI), robotic process automation (RPA), and machine learning (ML), many small businesses have had to rapidly adapt to a digital-first environment to continue delivering high-quality products and services to their customers and maintain a competitive market position.
Set a clear goal for your digital strategy. Digital transformation should be customer-centric, and it’s important to understand the needs and preferences of your customers. If your customers prefer to interact with your business through mobile or web-based applications,consider investing in a systems that provide a seamless experience and integrates with your other digital platforms.
For example, one of Boyne’s former portfolio companies, a pediatric home health nursing business, matched and staffed caregivers through a digital application that synchronized with an academic journal to ensure that nurses were appropriate based on the skills and certifications required to meet the patient needs. This business also implemented a web-based solution for user-friendly employee applicant tracking and talent acquisition management.
Long gone are the days when websites were important just for selling stuff. Your customers and suppliers are checking out your website for your track record and capabilities, and your potential customers may never find you if your website is not configured with the proper SEO keywords. Also, if you are not building your brand on social media, you are falling behind your competitors who are.
For example,one of Boyne’s companies that performs projects for large municipalities was able to geo-fence and target a recent press release to the municipality that was evaluating a pending RFP. We at Boyne have also revamped most of our companies’ websites to optimize where they pop up on search results through incorporating certain keywords and other strategies.
With the sudden shift to remote work and e-commerce, middle marketbusinesses have had to quickly adapt to new cybersecurity threats, increased need for technical support, and growing hardware/software improvements.
One of Boyne’s portfolio companies, a provider of managed IT infrastructure and cloud hosting services, assists customers transition their on-premise environments to the cloud which creates more flexibility, reliability, and security in addition to significant cost savings for businesses.
Digital transformation can be disruptive, and it’s important to be prepared for change. Encourage your employees to embrace new technologies and ways of working. Communicate the benefits of the changes and provide training and support to help them adjust. It’s also important to be open to feedback and willing to adjust as needed.
Boyne often hosts workshops and training sessions to help ouremployees understand and utilize new technologies to improve their overall productivity and efficiency.
Digital transformation can be complex, and it’s important to have the right expertise and resources on your side. Consider working with a digital transformation consultant or hiring an expert to help guide the process. They will provide valuable insights, expertise and support to navigate the journey.
For example, one of Boyne’s portfolio companies, a B2B media and events company, hired an expert to assist transition the business from print to digital marketing and advertising by implementing banner ad sales on company websites, lead generation campaigns, and company sponsorship offerings on newsletters.
Digital transformation can be a daunting process, but with the right approach, small businesses can navigate the journey with greater success, unlock the full potential of digital technologies, and create new opportunities for growth and success.