As organizations are pursuing a digital transformation to adapt their businesses to the new competitive digital environment, it requires business changes and a new mindset to help developing a different way creating and capturing value in collaboration not just with business partners but also with customers.
Effective digital transformation cannot be limited to the design and implementation of technology solutions. While the design of technology solution is a key component, we suggest that business design is a prerequisite of successful digital transformation. The notion of design has indeed its roots in science, engineering, art and buildings’ architecture.
Vision based on business problem-solving
However, the application of the notion of design in business problem-solving initiatives has increasingly been adopted in practitioner communities of business consulting. Using business design can help organizations to develop and implement new ideas about how to improve or transform the way their businesses are operated, understanding how to create value for stakeholders differently. Business design addresses new ideas and changes to the business model and the operating model as well as the definition of the service/product portfolio of the organization. This cannot be achieved by applying design thinking only in engineering to develop a supporting technology solution.
The findings in the report by the investigation commission of the Dutch Parliament on failed ICT projects in the public sector, can be traced back to lack of appropriate use of business design capability. In our view, the result of business design provides the context and guidance from the organization and user perspective to effective technical design in digital transformation for example. While this tends to be considered as the realm of experts, the involvement of the management is determinant for driving business design successfully in organizations. Our work in the field of business design builds from creativity in combination with a problem solving approach. In doing so, we help to use technology diligently in innovation processes driven by the value for customers and other stakeholders.