Advance Blog

November 19, 2021

Why is Digital Transformation So Hard?

69% of companies in Asia-Pacific are currently hastening their digital transformation efforts, according to a recent report by Deloitte. At first glance, this news is encouraging: Digital upgrades can help businesses improve and customise their services, while becoming more durable in the face of unexpected disruptions like the COVID-19 pandemic.

The problem is that not every effort delivers on its promise. In fact, a recent Boston Consulting Group study found that fully 70% of digital transformation projects end in failure.

So why do companies fail so often – and what are the successful 30% doing right?

A tool is not an end in itself

A common cause of failure is the expectation that new digital tools and systems will automatically solve a wide range of problems. But every tool needs an operator, and every operator needs a clear vision of what they are trying to achieve, along with the expertise to make it happen.

Digital transformation has less to do with expensive technology, and more to do with a change in culture and mindset. By keeping the right business goals in mind, compatible digital upgrades can be more easily selected, with added features chosen for their specific utility towards the underlying business situation.

Business leadership, together with a qualified IT team, should stay on the same page while overseeing the transformation. They should also join together in walking the entire staff through the types of changes they are implementing, the reasons for implementing them, and why the new system will make everyone’s lives easier.

This combination of technical knowledge, vision, and leadership is essential for keeping your team on the same page. But such skills aren’t always easy to come by, and it may be worth contacting a recruitment agency in Bangkok and Singapore in order to bring in qualified and experienced personnel.

Mistakes are part of the process

The road to change is bumpy, and even with the best preparation, problems will arise. Solving them takes time, and can occasionally be frustrating. But setbacks are a very real part of every goal worth achieving. And so the other lesson to remember is that mistakes do not equal failure.

Managers need to continuously support the transformation effort, especially during the more difficult moments. Clear communication between executives and staff, including department heads, is vital for the digital transformation effort to succeed.

Everyone on the team, from front line workers to middle management, must be repeatedly reassured that initial difficulties are to be expected. Failure to convey this message can result in personnel losing morale, trying to hide their mistakes, or actively resisting the transformation effort.

Success starts with the right people

People are at the heart of every successful organisation and transformation effort. It is people who determine the overall strategy, select the system upgrade which best aligns with that strategy, implement the new technology, migrate the data, train the rest of the staff, and set the tone for operations moving forward.

Experience, technical expertise, and leadership make all the difference between success and failure, and therefore must be at the centre of any digital transformation effort. As a leading recruitment agency in Bangkok and Singapore, Connexus can help your organisation meet its digital change goals, no matter the requirements.

Contact Connexus Global today to find out more.

James Egremont, Director at Connexus Global
James is the Regional Director for the Asia Pacific for Connexus Global, a leading value chain recruitment partner. James is currently located in Bangkok, Thailand where he has spent the majority of his recruitment career building and leading successful recruitment companies to be both client-facing and profitable. James has dedicated his entire recruitment career to helping some of the world’s largest organizations build their value chain, leadership teams. Visit
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