Fast Forward to Being Digital: A Strategic Guide for CDOs


By Bruno Berthon: Global Managing Director Cross Industry Strategy, Accenture Strategy at Accenture

It is one thing to acknowledge that digital technologies create new threats and even more opportunities. It is quite another to be sure that you have the right digital strategy in place to ride that wave of uncertainty.

Business leaders across the world are seeing how digital is changing everything—from customer expectations to distribution channels and production models. And these changes are happening at an unprecedented scale, imposing a new sense of urgency.

We discovered it’s a disruptive call that has already been heard by many business leaders.

Recent worldwide research found that 39 percent of executives want to be a digital leader in their industry and 59 percent expect to become a digital business in the next three years.

But these aspirations are not necessarily translating into actions.

More than half of the business leaders said they do not yet have an enterprise-level digital strategy to support their corporate strategy and many feel ill-prepared to transition to a digital business.

Clearly, there is work to do before business leaders are ready to use digital to help their organizations not only compete, but also drive new value and growth.

Digital TransformationBeing digital needs a keen understanding of your starting point—an assessment of an organization’s digital maturity, the extent to which it exploits digital across its various functions, both internal and market-facing.

This helps determine the quantifiable improvements in productivity that can accelerate competitiveness and economic growth.

Once that assessment has been made you can then focus on the “how” behind being digital—a challenge even for those who are putting digital at the heart of their goals and ambitions.

“Strategy is the discipline of setting a direction, lining up resources and executing commitments. Digital disrupts business strategy. Possibilities opened up by new technologies reduce the reliability of proven practices and approaches. Business leaders must explore new strategic approaches.”

(Source: Accenture, “Being Digital: Fast forward to the right digital strategy”)

In “Being digital: Fast forward to the right digital strategy” we look at how business leaders must meet the dual challenges of operating today while transforming for the future by executing strategies at multiple speeds and across multiple layers.

It is not a matter of whether organizations will be digital, but a case of when and how.

In the past, orchestrating transformation was the norm, requiring everyone to act together. This approach works when organizations drive change from the inside-out.

Digital drives change from the outside-in—and customers do not wait for organizations to adapt.

A multi-zone, multi-speed strategy recognizes that each part of the organization needs to move at a different pace, but in the same direction.

Working at multiple speeds requires executing across multiple layers. Traditionally, organizations are vertically oriented, aligning resources against specific market-geographies or product lines.

Digital technology cuts those layers horizontally along customer, enterprise and infrastructure lines. Maximizing the potential of digital business will require strategies that, over time, address all layers of the organization.

Executing an effective digital strategy is characterized by short cycles between direction setting and direct actions—the equivalent of a marathon in sprints.

Fast experimentation is central to quickly verifying and refining ideas in the face of changing demands.

Where next

It might seem like a challenging menu, but such an approach can help erase the doubts of any business leaders out there who are unsure if they have the right strategic approach  for digital business today—and one that can handle such a  volatile and disruptive future.

Do you have the right strategic approach for your digital business?

Find out at the 2nd annual U.K. CDO Summit on 7 October 2015 at 30 Euston Square in London.

You’ll hear keynotes from incredibly talented digital leaders, including Mark Curtis, Chief Client Officer at Fjord.

Mark Curtis2

Mark Curtis: Chief Client Officer at Fjord

Living Services – The  third era of digital

You will have heard of the Internet of Things, but how will businesses and brands use it?

How will health services, transportation, insurance, utilities and security companies, for example, evolve to match our increasingly liquid demands and expectations in a world where almost everything is digitized?

These questions are answered in a new groundbreaking report on the future of everyday life by Fjord Design and Innovation of Accenture Interactive.

The report envisages how businesses from oil companies to retailers, will create entirely new types of customer service or ways of working.

The Era of Living Services describes how brands will use the Internet of Things and powerful data analytics to create services that come to life; predicting and reacting to consumers’ changing needs and circumstances.

In other words, branded services that are personalized and change in real-time for every individual wherever they are and whatever they are doing.

Most importantly, the report predicts a wholesale transition from one-size fits all services to the delivery of mass-service customization, marking a revolutionary shift in the relationship between the customer and service providers, and demanding a wholesale re-appraisal of current business structures and operational relationships.

Find out more at the CDO Summit – Register Now!

CDO Summit gatherings include the very best digital strategists and practitioners on earth, speaking in intimate, collegial, and supportive environments designed to encourage networking, learning, and knowledge-sharing.

Attendees at the CDO Summit will learn how to create and implement strategies, attract and retain the right talent, and define clear roles and responsibilities to excel in the digital/data age.

The U.K. CDO Summit is presented by Accenture Strategy, along with sponsors ForgeRock and Odgers Berndtson.

See Select Speakers:

Jora-Gill Tanya-Cordrey Dave Cook

Jora Gill
Chief Digital Officer
The Economist

Tanya Cordrey
Chief Digital Officer
Guardian News & Media

Dave Cook
Chief Digital Officer
Time Out

Jacqueline-de-Rojas Sir Clive Woodward Joris Merks-Benjaminsen

Jacqueline de Rojas
Area VP for Citrix in
Northern Europe
President at techUK

Sir Clive Woodward
Rugby World Cup Winning Head Coach
Team GB Director of Sport,
London 2012

Joris Merks-Benjaminsen
Head of Digital Transformation

Sean_Cornwell Sarah-Bentley Mark-Curtis

Sean Cornwell
Chief Digital Officer

Sarah Bentley
Chief Customer Officer
Severn Trent Water

Mark Curtis
Chief Client Officer

Click Here To See All Speakers

If you are tasked with understanding what digital leaders must do in order to succeed in almost any industry, the best place to learn more is at the CDO Summit.

Register today for the Sydney CDO Summit on 01 March, 2016, presented by Accenture Digital.

Also sign up now to lock in our Super Early Bird Discount for NYC in April 2016, and Toronto in July 2016.

Reserve your place now:

Sydney Ad

The CDO Summit is the “must-attend” digital event of the year. The 2013, 2014 and 2015 CDO Summits received stellar endorsements from dozens of speakers and attendees alike:

“Thank you for an intense and inspiring U.K. CDO Summit. The content and networking were well worth the trip and investment.”

"The NYC CDO Summit was an awesome day - content - speakers - learnings. Everything."

“The opportunity to keynote at the inaugural U.K. CDO Summit in London was once in a lifetime experience. As the world’s youngest CDO, I learned valuable lessons from other digital leaders and gained a greater sense of confidence and energy leaving the event.

"Great experience at the CDO Summit in NYC. Hats off to David Mathison (@BeTheMedia) and the organizers for getting so many incredible digital leaders in one room, year after year."

More Endorsements

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