Digital maturity: one of the most important business metrics - and your company should keep an eye on it

Usually applied to the same circumstances, digital maturity, and digital transformation refer to different things. Understanding what they mean may be the turning point your company needs in the current market scenario.
Alana Zonato | 4 de novembro de 2021

Published on 08/26/2021. Translated by Reinaldo Zaruvni.

Processes digitalization, and digital transformation are already part of most Brazilian businesses. According to research led by Sambatech e Samba Digital, 62.5% of Brazilian companies are expected to invest from 10% to 30% from their total revenue in digital transformation still in 2021.

First, a digital transformation process requires the adoption of agile measures in response to a constant market changing, and such actions must generate market value and improve both product-consumer relationship and company time-to-market.

Given the context, we are ready to talk about digital maturity. After all, once digital transformation demands flexibility and dynamism to properly respond to market changes, good choices are important as well - and good decisions depend on maturity.

Do not worry if it is not clear yet that the concept of digital transformation is different from the one related to digital maturity. We will dot all the i’s and cross all the t’s concerning this matter!

In theory, digital transformation is a process that may result in digital maturity. However, neither all digital transformations lead to digital maturities, nor all digital maturities result from digital transformations. That is because digital maturity is not a static thing or a single goal to be reached.

For example, if an enterprise starts its digital transformation process, it cannot merely wait for its digital maturity to arrive without making an effort. There is a need for a whole thinking and planning process to ensure that new technologies adoption agrees with specific business purposes and its needs - as well as meets them all.

Anyway, what is digital maturity? As you will see through this content, it involves concrete changes application to one’s digital presence here and now, and it also wraps flexibility integration so it can keep transforming itself inside technical and philosophical architectures of a company.

Digital Maturity: what is it?

Digital maturity may be defined as an incremental process of changes and learnings. It shows how a company can learn from technological developments which change the market somehow, as well as its capacity of responding to them and properly benefiting itself from these resources. “Properly” because such a process demands indoor changes that go beyond investment in technology.

There are some performance metrics which reveal businesses development, like: enterprise’s market response time, revenue, profitability, product quality, and customer experience - the most important one nowadays.

Digitally mature companies know that their processes must change (especially processes related to their strategies, operations, culture, data, clients, and technology). They understand that this is important for their capacity to quickly respond to a constantly changing market. In short, they understand why they must invest in a certain technology, not in other ones, for example - and how by doing it they will be able to keep up with market’s innovation, whether they have already started to adapt themselves to new scenarios or do not have any control over unprecedented movements.

How to know if a company is digitally mature?

Just like there is not how to know exactly when a person becomes a mature adult, there is not a turning point, a clear and a single definition by which is possible to identify if a company has reached digital maturity - although the right path to it is filled with clues.

For example, those who understand the importance of digital transformation and the constant need of investing in digitalization, in digitization, and in processes automation, as well as those who align such matters to all their business strategies (while giving special attention to user/customer experience), are already following it.

Then, in this case, one next step would be to understand how new tools and technologies could improve the performance metrics planned by the company’s teams, bearing in mind that the way an organization deploys its resources is only a small part of being digitally mature. Knowing the difference between choosing a trending technology or a solid foundation for a quick decision-making process will certainly help an enterprise on its way to digital maturity.

Digital transformation vs. digital maturity

The biggest difference between digital transformation and digital maturity is in “why”. A company may be defined as digitally mature when it understands how an investment in a certain resource may create value through digital actions.

Besides, one of the main goals of digital transformation processes is to unlock enterprises’ capacity to adapt to a constantly changing global moment while they achieve higher productivity - and they only can align it to their strategies if they reach a certain maturity point.

As we have mentioned before, not all companies which pass by digital transformation are digitally mature. Even if two same size organizations from the same market segment do the same thing, they will certainly reap different results due their different digital maturity level.

By understanding “why” they must digitally transform, those who have bigger digital maturity will faster adapt themselves to new scenarios and will keep themselves more competitive. They avoid transformation simply by need or because everyone else is transforming. Low digitally mature companies find it hard to understand the value of investing in new products or technologies since they face a gap in their long-term vision.

How to turn my company into a digitally mature one?

Digital maturity is a trending topic; therefore, a lot of studies and methodologies concerning this matter are under development. There is not a single way of measuring it. However, remind yourself a digitally mature company will be always asking questions and researching both its market and the available tools it may benefit from. It will give importance to feedback and comprehend in detail its segment competition, its own limitations, and its potential.

By having these resources at hand, any company will be able to pursue the best professionals to keep its digital maturity on track, as well as to align to technology providers which will help it with software and technological solutions deployment, properly meeting its business needs.

Here, at ateliware, we are experts in bespoke software development, in customized solutions. We take the time to consider every situation concerning your demand - including the ones solely related to your operations - in all our processes, specifically in the discovery phase; thus, we may, together, make the right questions and understand your market, your user, and other relevant factors.

More than being just a technology provider, ateliware helps you to digitally transform your company, and we are constantly improving and updating our methods to co-create what will really make a difference to our clients in short, medium, and long terms. Let’s talk about your future?

Alana Zonato
Head of operations | O aprendizado contínuo me fascina e é isto que este mundo da tecnologia me proporciona. A adaptação é minha única constante, além claro de uma boa trilha sonora.