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5 IT Best Practices for the Digital Transformation of Businesses in 2021


5 IT Best Practices for the Digital Transformation of Businesses in 2021

Many businesses across North America just experienced their worst year for sales as the pandemic, and its associated restrictions, prompted closures for much of 2020-2021. As a result, every aspect of business has been challenged – from supply chain issues and evolving delivery methods to addressing new expectations from both consumers and employees.

To meet the demands of the new digital-first era we now find ourselves in, companies are adopting cloud-based tools and technologies at an accelerated rate. But true digital business transformation is more complicated and 70% of digital transformation strategies will fail (BCG analysis, October 2020). To ensure long-term, sustainable change, companies’ IT departments must focus on five key things:

1. Establishing a digital mindset, one of continuous innovation, across the entire organization

Culture change is one of the most difficult challenges of any business transformation. Executive leadership must initiate the change and demonstrate commitment to pivot by adopting an agile governance mindset. As the relationship between IT and business value deepens, the role of the IT department will become more critical to creating and accelerating profitable business growth. It is important for CIOs and the executive team to actively drive agile behaviors across the enterprise. This means establishing agile principles cross-functionally and adapting to change based on context and continuous learning.

2. Adopting modern, agile, and scalable digital technology architecture to fundamentally redefine the ways in which the organization operates

Many companies manage a wide variety of IT systems and mobile tech devices, but not all have mastered how to efficiently integrate new applications and cloud services with existing and/or third-party infrastructure. Solutions that enable full, omnichannel integration across all platforms will be important for businesses to ensure that key data is always available in real-time to make agile, more informed decisions. This helps businesses streamline operations to enhance efficiency, while reducing costs and building resiliency.

3. Capturing and activating data to better engage audiences and improve the customer experience

Customers’ expectations are radically changing – and so should the experiences your business delivers. Cloud-based tools and technologies allow brands to compete more effectively by ensuring that every interaction across every platform is delivering a consistent experience for the customer. This is achieved by seamlessly integrating commerce with other IT applications to give business decision makers a comprehensive picture of the customer journey, thereby allowing them to capture and activate key data to improve personalization, engagement, and brand loyalty.

4. Ensuring the best people are in the right places to drive the transformation

Undertaking a digital transformation is no easy task. Many organizations lack the right mix of skills and expertise required to execute a successful pivot to digital. Companies should carefully assess the roles and talent needed and look to external staffing and consulting firms that specialize in digital transformation solutions to fill gaps in their IT department.

5. Creating clear and effective tools to monitor progress and measure success

Businesses that develop effective monitoring tools and strategic metrics are more likely to be successful at digital transformation. This may include clearly defining operational or financial metrics, regularly tracking outcomes and roadblocks, and measuring productivity. Most importantly, it is advisable that companies maintain a single source of truth on data to ensure everyone involved – no matter their role or department – has access to the same analytics and information.


Keith Hontz is the Chief Executive Officer and President of Savantis. In this role, he oversees all key aspects of operations across Savantis SAP Global Solutions consulting services and Savantis Global Staffing services. With nearly 25 years of industry experience, Keith is a digital business transformation expert, helping organizations create operational efficiencies, derive deeper insights from data, improve their customer experience, and transform into Intelligent Enterprises. Keith joins Savantis following his successful role as CEO of SocketLabs, an industry leader in high-volume email infrastructure, where he quickly built his leadership team, onboarded an enterprise sales organization, and helped establish double-digit YoY revenue growth in his first year with the Company. Prior to SocketLabs, Hontz spent more than two decades at SAP America where he held key positions including Global VP, Regional VP, and other leadership roles in consulting, presales, product management, sales, and executive management, and engaged with hundreds of SAP customers in the private and public sectors.