Digital Transformation in the current times is more of a necessity than a choice. Rapidly changing market dynamics, rising customer expectations, the emergence of a global marketplace, the need for better user experience, and process modernization are all factors that necessitate changing how a business operates. If your business is digitally mature, you will gain on the above aspects that your competitors have already started improving. For businesses looking to make a foray into digital transformation, Microsoft technologies can catalyze business functions and operational processes and pivot the business to being more digitally mature.
The Path towards Digital Transformation
Digital Transformation is a synergy of continuous innovation involving people, processes, and technologies to create efficient outcomes that stimulate a business and give the right impetus for growth and stability. It involves using modern technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), and IoT, amongst others, to enrich business operations. Be it customer engagement, product innovation, data & analytics, and infrastructure, digital transformation catalyzes every aspect of your business. The vast applications, solutions, and services across the Microsoft technology offerings give you the perfect advantage in your path towards digital transformation.
The way to progress includes changes in business operations across macro and micro levels. As a business owner, you need to think about the emerging trends in your industry and the associated challenges and opportunities you can work on.
For example, within Microsoft technologies such as Dynamics and Power Platform, the enablement of digital transformation is better described as a digital feedback loop, which constantly collects data and signals from new and existing sources and provides enriching insights on patterns and disruptions across your business. It helps you optimize, innovate, or re-engineer your existing processes in a continuous cycle.
Strategizing your Digital Transformation journey with Microsoft Technologies
The best approach to digital transformation with Microsoft technologies involves a holistic view of the entire business as a cohesive unit and gradually adopting new technologies across individual functions and core operations. In this blog, we help you understand a sequential process towards digital transformation, which is progressive and covers all vital aspects of your business operations, beginning from core business operations to process automation and from communication to cloud computing.
An ideal strategy for digital transformation with Microsoft Technologies should include the following aspects.
- Identify areas of improvement and discard legacy processes and applications.
- Invest in modern technologies that suit current business needs, and consider a platform shift if necessary.
- Make room for process automation and optimization wherever required by factoring in time, costs, and resource allocation savings.
- Adopt a dynamic operational model that suits current and projected customer experiences to stay ahead in the competitive marketplace.
- Empower your workforce with the required skills and technologies to enhance agility and productivity.
- Democratize the use of applications with advanced tools such as Copilot and put the power of technology into the hands of every user.
- Make way for continuous innovation at every stage for current sustenance and future growth.
- Strategize and implement an effective change management exercise to ensure organizational alignment at every stage.
- Make your end users more receptive to change for optimal adoptability of new technologies.
- Move toward the cloud as a platform for your data and applications, and save on heavy upfront licensing and infrastructure costs. You get the benefit of lowered TCO, better performance, scalability as needed, flexibility, and security.
With the above necessary considerations for digital transformation strategy with Microsoft technologies, let’s look at how they can transform your business operations.
Modern Workplace: The shift to a modern workplace involves considering the recent surge in remote working. Microsoft 365 offers a wide range of applications such as Word, Excel, Outlook, and Teams, amongst others hosted on the cloud. This gives anytime and anywhere access without being restricted to usage in a physical location, giving your workforce the much-needed mobility advantage.
M365 also has a vast collection of Apps for routine to complex business functions. With Copilot for M365, users can create documents, spreadsheets, and e-mails with natural language prompts that automatically generate the required output. For more information on using Copilot in M365, please click here.
Communication and Collaboration: Microsoft Teams is the world’s leading remote communication tool for a global workforce. It integrates with other M365 applications to enhance communication and collaboration. Within the Microsoft suite, SharePoint is also the leading tool for collaboration with business documents and workflows.
Document Management and Workflow Automation: A centralized document storage system is critical to a business, with remote accessibility and security being the major requirements. SharePoint, available as a standalone application or as a cloud-hosted platform, is a robust and reliable Document Management System that simplifies accessibility and collaboration, along
with a wide range of security and governance systems that secure your files and align with your organizational policies.
SharePoint is also widely used for workflow automation, saving time for manual resources working on routine business operations such as document approvals, automated alerts, etc.
Within Microsoft technologies, OneDrive is a preferred choice for document storage, with enhanced security and compatibility with SharePoint. It comes in two versions, one for personal usage and the other for business users-OneDrive for Business.
Websites and Intranets: Within the Microsoft suite, SharePoint is a platform for building interactive intranets for your workforce. Microsoft Power Pages, a part of the Power Platform suite, helps to create web pages easily. These applications do away with manual coding using HTML/CSS and ensure rapid web page development with a vast collection of pre-built templates for every need.
Process Automation: Businesses often need help with manually driven tasks, which are repetitive and time-consuming and have drawbacks in output accuracy. With Microsoft Power Automate, you can automate your operational process across vast use cases within your operations. With automation, you can save time, resource allocation, and costs with accurate output.
Power Automate integrates with a wide range of third-party tools and data sources with built-in connectors, giving flexibility in designing custom connectors. It also comes with AI and ML-driven Hyperautomation capabilities, automatically optimizing the automation sequence based on prior data.
Custom Apps: Using Power Apps, a part of the Microsoft Power Platform suite, you can create custom Apps for diverse business needs with a device-agnostic capability. Power Apps can connect to many data sources and applications and use the data from your existing technology stack. It also has a collection of many App templates, which serve as a starting point for your custom requirements.
Chatbots: Chatbots or virtual assistants are an easy way to engage your customers online. They are helpful for data retrieval, processing information, and customer interaction. Microsoft Power Virtual Agents, a part of the Power Platform suite, enables easy creation of Chatbots with vast integration capabilities. Chatbots offset the need for having a manual agent interact with the customer and save you costs, time, and resource constraints.
Data and BI: Analytics and Business Intelligence help you track and monitor your operational processes and work on insights that can optimize your business operations and plan for the future. Microsoft Power BI, a part of the Power Platform suite, comes with intuitive AI, ML, and Predictive Intelligence capabilities that give you deep insights from your business data and enable smarter data-driven decisions.
Cloud Computing: The use of conventional on-prem data storage models with physical infrastructure is expensive and needs dedicated maintenance. You can save on high upfront costs by migrating your data and applications to the Azure Cloud. Get the advantage of scalability as per your dynamic business needs, and secure your confidential business data with Azure’s advanced security posture.
You can have scalable subscription models with pay-as-you-go billing and can use the benefit of Virtual Machines (VMs) and cloud-native applications that save you high upfront costs.
ERP and CRM: Siloed ERP and CRM systems do not give the agile advantages that your business needs to stay ahead. You can make a shift to Microsoft Dynamics 365. Dynamics 365 uses AI-driven technology for efficient ERP and CRM solutions, including Sales and Marketing, Customer Service, Finance, and Supply Chain modules. It easily integrates with other Microsoft technologies and third-party applications and scores high on efficiency and productivity.
Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365, Azure, and Power Platform come with integrated Copilot technology, which allows novice users to input a solution description in their natural language and generate the output automatically. Copilot does away with the need for coding skills and democratizes the usage of applications for novice users or citizen developers. Click here to know more.
If you want to move towards digital transformation with Microsoft technologies, New Era Technology can give you the perfect impetus for sustenance and growth. We are a Microsoft Solution Partner with vast experience developing custom solutions using Microsoft applications. New Era has successfully worked with many clients across diverse industry verticals to progress towards digital transformation. To know more, contact us, and we will be glad to help.