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Digital myth no. 5 — Every tech vendor is an expert in digital transformation

While every tech vendor seems to lay claim to being an expert in digital transformation, it stands to reason that not all can be. For sure, there are many vendors with experience helping clients create new customer or employee digital experiences, but this experience doesn’t make them experts in digital business transformation.

For 20 years, Forrester has been extolling the virtues of improving customer experience — we’ve even proven the value of delivering world-class experiences, including digital experiences.

And over these years, many of our clients have successfully mapped customer journeys and improved touchpoints, all the while seeing gradual improvements in their Customer Experience Index (CX Index™) scores.

But what happens when everyone’s customer journeys are optimized and when all digital experiences begin to look similar? As customer expectations rise, you must invest to improve touchpoints just to remain competitive. Without a major shift in how your leadership thinks about digital, your firm will struggle to break out from the pack.

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To break free of the sameness of today’s customer experiences, your firm must apply disruptive design thinking to your business strategy, embracing the art of the possible to reshape the business around customer outcomes. By embracing emerging technologies and using them to change the way your firm delivers these outcomes, you can disrupt the equilibrium. This is what it means to transform your business into a digital business. It means doing things differently across the entire business.

Of course, our thinking on transformation has evolved over the years, but the message remains fundamentally the same: Tinkering with today’s customer journeys helps, but it will not deliver disruptive, market-leading transformation.

To accelerate your company’s ability to harness emerging technologies, you need to find the right technology partners and invite them to help you create the future. Yes, they can also help you fix the present, but if you constrain them to just that, you’ll never get the best from their most creative talent, and you’ll lose speed versus your rivals.

There are a lot of factors to consider when selecting these most strategic partners. And you want to find the vendors with the right mix of capabilities to match your own. Even so, for global companies, only a thin tier of technology services vendors has the breadth of capability to help shape, execute, accelerate, and scale true digital business transformation on a global scale. To help you understand the vendors in the market, we’ve published a Forrester Wave™ evaluation of the 15 largest global digital business transformation accelerators.

(This post originally appeared on the Forrester Research blog, which can be viewed here).

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