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Digital Transformation

How much of your digital transformation budget is spend on leadership and people? The role of leadership in unlocking the full value of tech-enabled transformations.

Digital transformation is everywhere and it’s on every business leader’s agenda. Organisations are rolling out all kind of digital transformations from software implementations over process standardisations to AI, machine learning,… Often with the intent to accelerate their strategic objectives. Still, Are organisations truly unlocking the full value of their digital transformations? And what is the role of leadership and the role of HR in getting digital transformations right?

Recent Deloitte research reveals how combined actions on three elements (digital strategy, tech aligned to strategy and digital change) shape value. During this podcast with #ZigZagHR, Yves Van Durme and Tom Verstraete zoom in on the human elements in digital transformations and explain how they should be intertwined with the overall digital transformation.

Despite being a critical component, employee change management practices are not the only and holy grail of digital transformations. It starts way earlier with incorporating human elements in the business case, for example on how we expect people to collaborate with technology to make sure we use the technology to the fullest in process execution or decision making. Furthermore, involving people in the roll out of the business case should not only be a ‘tick the box’ activity, hoping to decrease resistance. No, it should decrease errors and ensure the standardized processes are in line with the company needs.

Incorporating human elements in the business case is not only the role of the CHRO, it should be the responsibility of the full C-suite. Genuine alignment and commitment of the C-suite upfront is needed so they sing from the same song sheet. Here, HR should step away from purely focusing on resource planning of the project teams, drafting job descriptions or finding backfills. The role of the CHRO in the development of the business case is to be a strategic challenger and ensure people elements are incorporated (e.g. digital maturity, change readiness & propensity at all levels, skills of the future, human-machine collaboration,…)

The role of the C-suite does not stop with the development of the business case. If the digital transformation is really strategic, business critical and they want to realize its full value, the senior leadership needs to spend time on it. This means strategic prioritisations but also equipping leaders with the right skills, competencies and mindset to drive the transformation. Often being the natural coach of leaders, the CHRO can play an important role here by integrating the transformational aspects in the existing leadership development programs.

If organisations truly want to realize the value of their digital transformation the human elements and the role of the CHRO go way beyond training and communication.


Zigzag HR - The role of leaders in digital transformations

Gain more insights into the human aspect of digital transformation with Yves van Durme, Global Organisation Transformation Leader, and Tom Verstraete, specialist leader, who were interviewed by Lesley Arens from Zigzag HR.

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