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    10 steps to a foundation for digitalisation success

    There are a lot of ways a project can fail, and a lot of reasons for less-than-optimal success.

    If you are considering a digitisation project, be it accounts payable processing, document archiving, or digital document workflows, there are some steps you can take at the outset to increase your chances of success.

    Photo by Thomas Bormans on Unsplash


    Here are the top 10 things to think about when starting a digitalisation project (and as experts in the whole process, we can help you from start to finish):

    1. Define your goals and objectives. Seems obvious but, you'd be surprised how often this crucial step is missed without expert help. Clearly identify what you hope to achieve through digitisation, the boundaries of the project and the OKRs (Objectives and Key Results) for the project.
    2. Conduct a needs assessment.  A fairly obvious but often overlooked step and it's part of our initial discussion with you; determine what resources you have available and what you will need to complete the project both internally and externally.
    3. Develop a budget and timeline. This is a crucial one and will determine both the quality and technical capabilities of the external resources and the ultimate solution. Take time to try to estimate the costs and time required to complete the project and what the KPIs for it will ultimately be operations and finance-wise.
    4. Identify and prioritise the materials to be digitised. Closely tied to step one but in more detail, reflectively look at the DATA and DOCUMENTS to be digitised and WHY. Look at the lifetime of information and data contained within the transactional lifetime of the document and, understand what order the digitisation process should tackle these documents.
    5. Choose the appropriate technology. Obviously, we are biased but DocuWare fits in 909% of technology strategies either on-prem or cloud. In line with your organisational technology strategy (which will be closely aligned with the overall operational strategy), identify and select (usually by way of a scorecard) the hardware/infrastructure and software that will be used to digitise the materials.
    6. Develop a project plan. Using project planning software such as Scoro and, mind mapping the overall project with something like Miro will help you create and manage the overall project. Creating an initial detailed plan outlining the steps required to complete the project will also help identify further resource, knowledge or technology needs.
    7. Avengers Assemble! Well ok, maybe assemble a team. Identify the people who will be responsible for different aspects of the project, such as scanning, data entry, process management, project management, board-level sponsorship, technical aspects, PR and quality control etc. People can undertake multiple roles but probably no more than two if it’s a complex project. You may find for example that QC covers data verification, process confirmation, UAT and post-UAT review but the same person should not be involved in the detailed process design because you will find that bias, implied process knowledge and assumed meanings will impact the objective nature of QC. We can offer advice on shaping your project team and, fill some of the gaps if required.
    8. Train the team. Ensure that everyone on the project team is appropriately trained in the use of the technology and solution/s used. We provide comprehensive pre-UAT, UAT and post-go-live training and support to ensure maximum comfort and, with our extended support packages you're never on your own. They will ultimately be responsible for cascading their knowledge down to end users and evangelising the digitisation project across the organisation.
    9. Implement the project plan. Nothing works without execution and a project is no different. It won’t happen by osmosis but you have to be both brave and open to review — projects run on an agile basis, with sprints contained within each element would anecdotally seem to have a far higher chance of success, particularly if the project team is reflective by nature. We have a dedicated project manager for the lifetime of your build and go-live, followed by a Client Success Manager who will be in touch regularly to address any questions, revisit training, share new features or discuss ways in which you can get even more from your system.
    10. Evaluate and refine the process. Or, reflect, reflect, reflect. Digitisation is like painting the Forth Bridge, once you have finished you go back and do it again, building on the foundational layers. Once the project is complete, evaluate the results and make any necessary adjustments to the process for future projects.

    So, there you have it - some key elements for building a foundation for success. There are a lot of other things that need to fall into place but, these will help you make a start. If you want to discuss a possible project or, you are already a client partner and what to look at ways to make the most of your system then get in touch with us and we will be happy to chat!

    Shaun on LinkedIn


    "Happy man in a suit" photo by Razvan Chisu on Unsplash

    "Laptop" photo by Dell on Unsplash

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    10 steps to a foundation for digitalisation success 10 steps to a foundation for digitalisation success