Insights from the Digital Transformation Conference 2023

We attended the sold out Digital Transformation Conference - follow our coverage to hear about what we learnt.
15 May 2023

Nicola Wadham at the Digital Transformation Conference via Roar Media

Last Thursday, May 11, we were lucky enough to attend the sold out Digital Transformation Conference 2023. With presentations from industry experts, follow along for insights from the conference.

Kicking things off, Nicola Wadham, CIO at the Financial Ombudsman Service was the first keynote speaker at the event. Her bold opener: we’re all in digital transformation. Like it or not, change is happening in the workplace, and organizations need to get on board – before it’s too late.

Let’s frame it right: change is positive! In fact, Nicola argued that we should view digital transformation as a vehicle for change. She outlined some of the changes that businesses should make:

  • Adjust the way we think about business case development. It’s important to tie actions to specific gain, building a portfolio programme. Further, it’s worth modelling finances and assumptions before acting.
  • Be more creative! It might feel at odds with strategy, but creativity is key to understanding opportunities for development, and makes building outcome-driven portfolios easier.
  • Ensure a forensic understanding of how people interact with tech at your company. You can’t make change without a solid understanding of what your start point is.
  • Add and understand the lexicon of change. Ensure that your business environment fosters development. This is where your CIO can step in: what services are on offer?
  • Introduce stakeholders to outcome portfolio language. It’s critical that there’s an understanding of organization time as currency. Here’s an example that Nicola provided:

To facilitate all this, a delivery director should lead implementation. Digital transformation is a company-wide shift, and should be treated as such: all people, all processes, all data. Center your business development on problems you seek out and identify.

To connect with Nicola, and for a summary in her own words, follow Nicola Wadham on LinkedIn.

Next on the agenda was a keynote presentation from Thomas Harris, Senior Vice President, Digital Business Transformation at Mastercard. Speaking on driving nterprise digital transformation, Thomas shared a shocking statistic: only 50% of companies directly incentivize transformation.

He highlighted the importance of leading through digital transformation, acknowledging that often tech install is the easiest part of digital transformation. Much tougher is behavioral and habitual change.

Because behavior is difficult to control from the top, leadership should do one simple thing: ask employees how they are feeling. In Thomas’s experience, the key challenges that employees raise are a lack of resources and issues with objective.

Ask yourself if performance is delivered within the organization on an individual or team basis – how engaged are leadership? Does their involvement help or hinder? For Thomas, communication is key.

Change done well is a tool for employee retention, as shown by the impressive fact that 86% of employees are either highly motivated or somewhat motivated to stay by their organization’s transformation journey.

Thoms Harris at the conference. Via Roar Media

To connect with Thomas Harris, follow him on LinkedIn.

From Softwire, Zoe Cunningham spoke to use about the paradigms of evolution and innovation. Softwire is a software development consulting company, excellently placed to help your organization’s digital transformation.

Placed side by side, evolution and innovation can seem to be in conflict.

Evolution is slow and gradual, where innovation tends to be fast, even sudden. Where innovation is localized, evolution is holistic. However, every business need is different. Softwire’s approach is to acknowledge the fact that there is no magic bullet solution. It’s key to think tactically and flexibly.

Stay tuned for more coverage and insights from the conference in the next few days.