In a world where almost everything has gone digital, understanding your business’s digital maturity is essential. If you don’t understand where your company stands, you fail to make a strategic plan — causing you to make high-cost decisions that lead to poor results.

What Is Digital Maturity?

Digital maturity refers to how a company can respond and adapt to disruptive trends in technology. It’s more of a constant undertaking of a business rather than an end goal. It’s a company’s ability to make the most of market opportunities based on digital technology, current tech stacks, and staffing resources. The characteristics of digital maturity include efficiency, flexibility, innovation, insight, and quality.

How Does Digital Maturity Differ From Digital Transformation?

Digital maturity is often used interchangeably with digital transformation, but they are not the same.

 

Digital transformation is when a business or organization goes through an extreme change in its digital practices. This includes revamping their workflow and transitioning to digital operations. The organization may again change its workflow and use the latest digital trends or technology several years later. Digital maturity, on the other hand, is how the organization can create value through digital technologies.

 

Digital transformation can result in digital maturity, but contrary to what some may believe, they are not the same.

What Are the Three Types of Digital Maturity Models?

There are three types of digital maturity models that set the direction for your digital maturity.

  • Generic — This model type continues to flow through an array of maturity and can be applied to anything.

 

  • Detailed — While this model type is more refined compared to the generic type, it’s still industry-agnostic and can be applied to any industry.

  • Industry-specific — As its name suggests, this model type is based on a specific industry with unique frameworks to support and sustain it.

What Are the Four Stages of Digital Maturity?

Each digital maturity model has several stages that guide the organization’s goals. Justin Grossman, the CEO of digital agency Meltmedia, explains the four levels of digital maturity:

  • Integrated: Streamlined Digital Transformation Efforts — These efforts are supported by leadership. When a company is at this stage, they integrate digital transformation strategies across various business areas in an efficient manner with buy-in from leadership.

 

  • Incidental: The Need for a Strong Foundation — Actions that support digital maturity happen by chance and are not planned.

 

  • Intentional: Building a Digital Strategy — There is a strategy behind actions for digital transformation, but only in some areas of business.

 

  • Optimized: The Peak of Digital Maturity — Companies in this stage have been completely integrated into digital transformation and have made it part of their company culture.

How Do I Assess Digital Maturity?

Assessing digital maturity will support your organization in determining where you are. It can also help you come up with strategies to get you to the maturity level you want the organization to reach. There’s no universal method to assess digital maturity, but a lot of digital maturity assessment tools have questionnaires that cover business strategy, technology, customers, business partners, business processes and operations, people, and culture. After you answer the questions, you’ll be able to determine which level the organization belongs.

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