Enterprise: Digital mastery

WE have now reached the last component in our series on the road map to digital transformation – digital mastery. It must be the goal of any organisation that embarks on the journey to ultimately become a digital master. Digital mastery requires two capabilities to succeed in the digital transformation process: digital leadership and digital capability.

An exhaustive digital transformation study done by global consulting company Capgemini, on over 400 organisations, revealed that there are four categories of business that exist in the new digital dispensation:

1. Beginners

2. Conservatives

3. Fashionistas

4. Digital masters


Beginners are organisations that still have a relatively immature digital culture. Management is sceptical of the business value of advanced digital technologies but is still carrying out some experiments in the digital space.


Conservatives are slightly more evolved. These organisations have an existing and overarching digital vision, but it may be underdeveloped. There is strong governance across silos where traditional capabilities may be thriving, but digital maturity and advanced digital features are wanting. Nevertheless, the business has recognised the need to take active steps to build digital skills and culture.


The fashionista is quite prominent across the local landscape. This organisation has no overarching vision but possesses many advanced digital features and platforms (such as ERP, social media, web and mobile). Digital culture may exist in silos, but coordination of these skill sets across the entire organisation is virtually non-existent.

Digital masters

Finally, there is the digital master. This unicorn exhibits a strong, overarching digital vision, a strong digital culture, and active efforts to build a robust set of digital skills internally. These organisations also exercise excellent digital governance as they undertake numerous digital initiatives which generate business value and customer satisfaction in measurable ways.

Tips for digital mastery

For an organisation to reach high digital mastery levels there are some fundamental things that it must do.

•Top leadership (board of directors and senior management) must be fully committed and in support of the digital transformation effort.

• Identify the individual or team that will drive the digital transformation effort and provide all necessary support to this individual or group.

• Ensure that all employees of the organisation are included in the digital transformation journey as full partners.

• Make meaningful investments in upskilling human resources. Trained and digitally skilled employees are critical to a successful digital transformation.

• Make investments in creating a new digital culture that facilitates agility and flexibility, innovation, and a culture of openness and empowerment.

• Invest in and use fit-for-purpose digital technologies.

• Use data! By leveraging the data and using advanced analytics, you will convert the data into insights and sound decisions.

Trevor Forrest is founder and CEO of 876 Technology Solutions. Christopher Reckord is CEO of managed IT services provider tTech Limited. Collectively, they have approximately 80 years of experience helping organisations of varying sizes procure and implement information technology solutions and transform digitally.