Thinking ‘digital’ a few ideas on what that might mean.

I started my day today with a DigiShift session. This months theme was about strategies to de-risk digital activities ( link to watch the full session to be added soon). During the post session discussion one of the speakers, Raymond O’Hayre from Engage, said that he and his team try to encourage a ‘think digital’ mindset in their organisation. That got me thinking… What does it mean to ‘think digital’? What needs to be in place to help people to ‘think digital’? So, here are my thoughts…

What does it mean to ‘think digital’?

Let’s break it down… In this context, thinking digital, is not about putting a digital tool or product in the way, it’s fundamentally about asking; is there a better way to do this? Could this activity be done in a way that saves on time and energy, or that is easier for the person trying to access our services?

It might be easier here for us to look at a scenario…

For the past decade, your organisation has been asking staff to make a duplication of a word document, fill in their answers to the relevant questions, print or email the document to their line manager so that they can then request a holiday.

When we think digitally, we aren’t satisfied with this. We ask what other ways could we do this? Are there steps to this that we don’t need? Is there a tool that can help us do this in a more streamlined way?

When you ask the question, and begin to be curios about other ways to do things, you are beginning to ‘think digital’.

What needs to be in place to help people ‘think digital’?

In order to ‘think digital’ people need to be empowered and supported. It could overwhelm many to make this ask without offering them support, so what things could you put in place to help?

Training opportunities

Training can help to build confidence. I’m sure you know that I’m a real advocate for using training as an opportunity for ‘mastery’ and confidence building. By offering training, either from within your organisation, or through spaces like BeMoreDigital, you are supporting the people in your team to have the confidence to ‘think digital’.

Frameworks and guidance steps

These don’t have to be complex. A simple shared understanding of what it means to ‘think digital’ in your organisation will go a long way to begin with. After that, you could think about setting out decision tree diagrams (If your idea needs a new system, who to speak to etc) or even setting out minimum criteria for any new ideas (The idea must have three goals that it wants to reach, and prove that it could reach them within three months). If you’re a larger organisation, you may need to become more detailed here. No matter your organisations size, you should try to work in a team from across the organisation to agree what frameworks and guidance will work best for you.

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