Digital Transformation Stages

Posted on June 6, 2018

man-791049_640Digital transformation represents the integration of digital technology into all areas of business. As a result, enterprises experience fundamental changes in operations and interactions with customers. This shift requires a realignment or investment in technology, business models, and processes to drive value for customers and employees. Doing so, allows companies to compete in the evolving digital economy more effectively.

To help companies assess the status, progress, and goals for digital transformation Brian Solis from Altimeter created a digital maturity model and identified a series of patterns, components, and processes that form a strong foundation for change. The 6 stages of the digital transformation process include:

Business as Usual

During this stage, organizations operate with a familiar legacy view of customers, metrics, business models, methods, and technology. These companies believe that their existing strategy is the solution to digital relevance.

Present and Active

Companies in this stage begin to experiment and are driving digital literacy and creativity disparately.  Although this happens throughout the organization, the aim is to change individual touchpoints and processes.


Experimentation is intentional during this stage. The results are more promising, and capabilities are improved. The initiatives are bolder, and change agents look for executive leadership to add resources and support.


Businesses in this stage recognize strength in collaboration. The research, work, and insights of employees help develop a new strategic roadmap and plan for digital transformation ownership, efforts, and investments.


During this stage, a dedicated digital transformation team is created. This team is tasked with designing and guiding strategy and operations based on a set of customer-centric, business goals. A new infrastructure takes shape, and roles, expertise, models, processes, and systems to support transformation are solidified.

Innovative and Adaptive

At this point, digital transformation is a way of business. Executives and strategists recognize that change is constant. A new ecosystem is established to identify and act upon technology and market trends in a pilot and at scale.

Together, these stages serve as a blueprint for digital maturity and guide purposeful and advantageous digital transformation. This model focuses on the digital customer experience (DCX). DCX is an essential catalyst for business evolution. Market factors and technology have further enabled this transformation.

While these stages are presented as linear, companies may span multiple phases at once. This framework allows for validation, benchmarking, and mapping, but businesses may find themselves revisiting and overlapping stages.

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This entry was posted in customer experience, customer engagement, digital transformation

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