This week on the blog, we’re sharing an excerpt from chapter 2 of 19, from the Balance Internet whitepaper ‘Digital Transformation in B2B eCommerce — Driving success and growth in 2021 and beyond’ Second Edition.’

We’ll discuss how the discipline of digital transformation is substantially more complex than simply integrating modern digital technologies into critical areas of a business. As well as the role of skilled employees and executives being widely accepted to be just as crucial as that of the new technologies themselves.

While you’re here, don’t miss out on downloading a FREE copy of the whitepaper to read the full chapter, along with expert insights and predictions from 40+ leading industry experts.

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The importance of people and resources for a business

Digital transformation is substantially more complex than simply integrating modern digital technologies into critical areas of a business. Skilled employees and executives are widely accepted to be just as crucial as that of the new technologies themselves.

Any company can digitally transform by making changes to the way they trade — introducing an eCommerce solution, implementing new software, or other digital technologies. However, they must remember one thing; if you make every other change, but yet their employees are not empowered, the digital transformation will almost certainly not be successful.

“Empowering people is the key to achieving profound and lasting digital transformation that provides sustainable growth and inclusion.”

Following 2020, the B2B industry must take on learnings of the global COVID-19 pandemic, and its impact on business operations. In addition to the continual need for securing the right people, new ways of working have had to be adopted to continue the digital transformation. This new way of working together yet apart was unknown for many businesses and quite a radical change to the existing ways of working.

Challenges of people and resources

When we find ourselves on a tight-rope, we recognise the tipping points in ourselves. Sharing our difficulty is part of our growth. We must take a similar approach to identify the tipping points or strengths and weaknesses in ourselves and our teams’ individuals.

Having the right person, in the right seat, is the result of continually and proactively building talent pools. Putting the right person in the right seat is often so challenging, that B2B companies we speak with (a mix of both our clients and others) say it’s one of the most significant factors impacting their growth, ability to meet changing market demands, and deliver digital transformation solutions.

With the new normal we face, there is an excellent opportunity to reimagine how we create our ‘dream team’. Digital transformation is about re-transformation, and the composition of people that make up teams is no exception.
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Driving success with cross functional teams

To master digital transformation, the role of a cross-functional and agile organisational structure should not be underestimated. Successful projects need cross-functional teams with the right digital competencies and organisational accountability relative to the roles they are performing. Without the right people, businesses won’t be able to integrate the new technologies into their business fabric appropriately.

According to the Aberdeen Group, aligned sales and marketing teams show up to 400% higher annual revenue growth than do non-aligned teams.

At Balance Internet, the various teams we see in leading B2B companies when undertaking digital transformation includes a well-executed mix of:

  1. The business team
    The collective of people who work in a company, working together in groups or independently towards common goals. A business team resource could be a full-time employee, part-time employee or contract employees.
  2. The outsourced team
    These people are engaged as required for particular projects and initiatives. Outsourced teams play a crucial role in accelerating the development of new solutions. An outsourced resource could be a subcontractor, strategic advisor or a legal or financial consultant.
  3. The third-party team
    These people or groups are added to those primarily involved in projects and initiatives. A third party resource could be a software provider or contracted subject matter expert.

Determine a combination of these teams and resources and the weighting that works best within your operational constraints relative to the bodies of work you want to undertake.

In particular, with the business team, it’s imperative to ensure the organisational structure will allow for recruits where required, and those full-time, part-time and casual salaries are factored into the project cost, operational expenditure, and capital expenditure.

Of the businesses undergoing digital transformation we work with, those who tend to be successful have cross-functional teams with varied digital competencies. Furthermore, they work hard to ensure that innovation doesn’t slow down once a single project is delivered.

Something to consider:

Building your dream cross-functional team

We’ve explored how leading Australian businesses across various industry sectors utilise their
people to run digital transformation. The typical roles you would expect to see in those organisations on the
path towards digital maturity includes a mix of the following team members:

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Internal Team Members

  • Chief Executive Officer
  • Chief Marketing Officer
  • Chief Digital Officer
  • Chief Technology Officer
  • Chief Information Officer
  • Chief Financial Officer
  • Digital Security Officer
  • eCommerce Manager
  • eCommerce Coordinator
  • Content Manager
  • Marketing Manager
  • Sales Manager / Sales Representatives
  • Retail Manager / Retail Representatives
  • Customer Service / Customer Success Representatives
  • Warehouse and Logistics Manager
  • Warehouse Pick and Pack Teams
  • Resource and Planning Manager

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Oursourced Team Members

  • eCommerce Consultant / Strategic Advisor
  • Marketing Content Producer / Agency
  • Copywriter / Photographer / Media
  • Production Agency
  • Translator / Translation Services
  • Digital Marketing Consultant / Agency
  • Security Consultancy

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Third Party Providers Team Members

  • Platform Providers, e.g. Magento Commerce, Marketo
  • Systems Integrator, e.g. Balance Internet
  • Analytics, e.g. Adobe Analytics, Magento BI
  • Digital Agency and Web Developers, e.g. Balance Internet
  • ERP Provider, e.g. Pronto, Surefire, AP21, SAP, MS Dynamics
  • Hosting Provider, e.g. Amazon AWS, AC3
  • Shipping and Fulfilment Provider, e.g. Shippit, ShipStation, ShipperHQ

Part of building out B2B eCommerce capability and delivering on the digital transformation roadmap will inevitably involve upskilling your teams. Balance Internet, together with Adobe have proudly been involved in building skillfinder.com.au. With hundreds of online courses offered by the best in the industry, Skill Finder will help you explore and connect your teams to their next online learning opportunity, for free.

Key takeaways

  1. The role of skilled employees and executives is now widely accepted to be just as crucial as that of the new technologies themselves. Have you identified the resource capability required to deliver your digital transformation strategy?

  2. Successful projects need cross-functional teams with the right digital competencies and organisational accountability relative to the roles they are performing. What is the right composition of a cross-functional team for current and upcoming initiatives?

skill-finder

Upskill yourself

Are you looking to upskill, update, re-train or simply learn something new? Skill Finder is a marketplace that connects you to your next learning opportunity!

Start exploring the free courses offered by the best in the industry today.

  • Digital courses provided by industry professionals
  • Online accessibility so you can learn at your own pace
  • Microskills to bolster your knowledge and demonstrate continued learning
  • Upskill without risk – all courses are FREE

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In Conclusion

This blog post is an excerpt from chapter 2 of 19, from the Balance Internet whitepaper ‘Digital Transformation in B2B eCommerce — Driving success and growth in 2021 and beyond’ Second Edition.

Read the entire chapter, along with expert insights and predictions from 40+ industry experts, by downloading a FREE copy of the whitepaper today.

Download the whitepaper

B2B eCommerce is booming and APAC merchants are embarking on grand scale digital transformation like never before. Download a copy of the whitepaper if you’re ready to kick your organisation’s digital transformation strategy into overdrive for the year ahead. There’s simply no time for slowing down; the time for innovation and growth is now.

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