26 November 2019

Digital Dividends

Digital transformation is not a technology problem but a people problem: technology, with few exceptions, tends to be there when needed and to evolve, in addition, to become simpler, cheaper and more versatile over time, what’s more, it can’t be UNINVENTED

Background

If the benefits that emerge from a digital transformation process are mostly absorbed by the company that carries it out and not distributed among the different actors involved, whether they are workers, customers, suppliers or others, we can expect little commitment from these players, meaning that the process is highly likely to fail.

Challenges

If using a particular technology increases the company’s productivity and allows employees to decide when and where they will work, does the company incentivize them by offering them the possibility of using that technology to do so? Or does the company use the new technology to make workers available 24/7, to the point that laws have to be passed regulating its use, as has happened in several European countries? Can we really expect the workforce to overcome the natural resistance to change, if the only benefits are reflected in the company’s share price (assuming the workforce doesn’t have share options) or the CEO’s annual bonus?

Findings

Digital dividends are not always purely economic. Whatever form they take, they must be reasonably agreed upon and interpreted by all parties.

Recommendations

I believe that exploring the digital dividends created by technological transformation and, above all, their distribution among the different parties involved can help predict the eventual success or failure of such processes.

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