6 Essential Steps For Successful Business Transformation in Professional Services, Engineering, Technology Firms

“Business Transformation is an Issue.”

Business transformation is certainly a pressing issue for all small and medium size businesses, especially in the professional services, engineering, technology, manufacturing and architectural firms.

As the margins shrink and customer expectations grow in the industry, it has never been a more crucial time to step your actions up for transformation and discover what it means for your organisation.

Here, we are going to explore some successful steps what it really means for your business, and offer you concrete, actionable advice you can use to start your business transformation journey right away.

Business transformation encompasses all kind of strategies, technologies and processes, so it means very different things to different firms. That is where most firms find it hard to find a single, clear path toward it.

Business transformation to engineering, technology, construction and manufacturing firms  is to focus on transformation strategies, technologies and goals, and diving them in to following two broad pillars

  • Test and measure existing strategies, processes and systems
  • Improving existing strategies, technologies, processes and finding a new efficiency through challenging existing business model
  • Introducing new strategies, processes, new platforms and technologies to unlock new business models and ways of working

Why is it so important for your industry?

In the current age where more and more firms are taking unprofitable projects just to fill their order book to survive but margins are thinner than ever, so these firms need to step up their efforts to take very firm approach to solve these challenges. Clients expectation is keep increasing, they need every project to turnaround, quickly, in most affordable way (cheaper), and to the highest standard.

The firms can achieve these by testing, measuring, then transforming, streamlining their strategies, and automating disconnected processes. Using new technology and platform, they can create new business model to meet client’s evolving needs and can stand out against competitors. This way you can create sustainable future growth with better profit margins and greater profitability.   

Undertake an Honest Health Check of Your Business

It is very difficult to gauge where to start for your business transformation, and that’s why honest health check of your business requires. This will help to exactly identify which strategies, processes and systems are in most need of transformation.

It is very critical though, not to omit the things you don’t want to see, for example, many businesses try to avoid people’s problems and their management. You may have inefficient workflows, unconnected business growth strategies, and siloed departments which would need transformation fix. By fixing these first, you are more in position to deliver quick wins.


Quick Fix Small, Short-term First and Grow

Don’t try to undertake a complete transformation in one go otherwise you won’t see your efforts will last long. Take a small step by transforming individual strategies and processes and built further from there. It’s not a good idea of ripping out and replacing core systems, you’ll experience quick success when you take a single, smaller tasks and modernising that first.

You would better do a simple integration as a starting point, if any of your strategies and system aren’t connected, integrating them with people provides strong starting point for your transformation journey.

Transform People and Organisational Strategies – Not Just Processes and Tech

Business transformation is not just about the growth but it’s much more than that. Transformation strategies and technology platform offer greater growth and efficiency and superior user experiences. If people do not use or get buy-in the benefits are never realised. It is also important that your teams are trained to use them effectively. At the same time, you also need to educate clients about your transformation. It is therefore crucial to communicate with both staff and clients to ensure you see the success of the transformation.

When it comes to organisation change, it is necessary to focus on the team and enjoy the strength of unity for the benefits of the greater good of the team. Once transformation strategies are adopted, you can offer employees powerful tools  and ensure people are applying them. You can attract new generations of talent when people join you and offer them the experience they crave for the latest solutions for business problems, and this way both current and future employees can be at the centre of your transformation. Your employee will be more interested to hear about how this will simplify complex workloads, automate tedious tasks, and help them spend more time on engaging parts of their role.

Use Data Most Effectively and Don’t Just Collect All Shiny Data

Many firms focus on collecting all shiny data in the hope it will become useful in future, like data magpies. The data on its own isn’t especially useful, instead, transformation should focus on how to use the data you collect most effectively.

Many gurus consider ‘data is the new oil’. It is true up to a certain point; data is very valuable commodity. Most likely you can drown into it if you have too much. In most of the cases, firms in the industry currently have all kinds of data to hand and this could be drawings, financial data, models, contract information, emails, reports and project data that are used to scope future projects. Although they have this data, it is ignored by teams that are experiencing information overload.

Collecting too much data and not having enough understanding doesn’t help, it becomes just waste of time for people that are already struggling to meet tight deadlines. So instead of just collecting data, think about how you can collect the right data and use new reasonable strategies to analysis it and present only meaningful finding back to your teams.

Fix Your Outsourcing Strategy

It is also one of the biggest challenges for many firms who enjoy outsourcing but most of them end up in the experience that the quality of work received back from those experts is not what expected. For this, it is essential that you fix it and set up a system to maximise the quality and leverage in your business.

Firstly, you will need set up some rules and polices covering the systems detailing contracts, conditions, legal details, constraints, confidentiality and non-compete clauses. 

Secondly, set out processes and procedures detailing how tasks are logically translate your rules and policies and you have detailed instructions that tell them step by step how to achieve a process.

Thirdly, when outsourcing company is sitting outside of your firm, you will need to figure it out which tools you will use to communicate with them. It is the documentation or the physical items that you use to communicate your processes and procedures to the relevant outsourced experts.

If you do this with above three items in mind you will start enjoying the true power of outsourcing without any issues of quality or affecting your company’s value and goals and can truly enjoy the perfect transformation in your business.

Don’t Tackle Your Business Transformation Alone

Business transformation is so huge that no single person, department, or even organisation could hope to successfully manage it alone.

The business growth dynamics are keeping changing and using the right strategy at right time is very important. By finding the right transformation partners, you can draw on their expertise to transform in a way that ensures your business is ready for whatever challenges tomorrow brings.

It is also worth thinking about what partnerships, beyond external partners, need to be in place within your business to ensure your transformation is a success.

What teams, departments will need to be involved to effectively deliver and communicate change?

What stakeholders will need to buy-in for the strategies to drive transformation across all teams?

With the right internal and external partners to hand, you can deliver a futureproof transformation that brings your people together and achieve growth, profitability you deserve.

Genuine Business Transformation – Using The Right Business Transformation Partner

This framework of 6 steps guides you the first crucial steps in your business transformation journey. But many firms in the industry may prefer to have additional guidance as they work to secure their business transformation and growth. This could also be the time, energy, and the most important – Expertise, they don’t have in-house.

The right business transformation partner can offer this guidance, provide hand-on approach by rolling their sleeves up to provide genuine consulting work – which can show some fruits quickly to ensure your transformation meets – and even exceeds – your expectations.

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