A recent global study from MIT Sloan Management Review found that maturing digital businesses transforming their businesses by integrating technologies, while less mature organizations are using discrete problems with individual technologies:

“Digital success isn’t all about technology: The 2015 Digital Business Global Executive Study and Research Project by MIT Sloan Management Review and Deloitte identifies strategy as the key driver in the digital arena. Companies that avoid risk-taking are unlikely to thrive and likely to lose talent, as employees across all age groups want to work for businesses committed to digital progress.”

MIT Sloan Management Review

What does this mean for your business? Let’s dig into the findings and break it down.

3 people seated around a table discussing business.

Operational Maturity Level

First, let’s talk about Operational Maturity Level, or OML. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 5, where OML 1 is less mature and OML 5 is very mature.

Some traits of OML 1 organizations:

  • Compliance with technology standards are non-existent or poorly defined
  • No formal security policies are in place, or outdated and inadequate policies exist
  • IT budget is either informal or non-existent, and IT spending does not align with company value creation

Some traits of OML 5 organizations:

  • Compliance with technology standards are clearly defined and enforced with strict controls
  • Formal security policies are in place and strictly enforced
  • IT spending is seen as a value add, and is seen to empower organizational efficiency and accountability

Raising OML should be a standing goal of any business. Higher operational maturity is only reached through powerful and difficult decisions and process refinement.

Interestingly, technology isn’t always an advantage. At the low end of the OML scale, technology is difficult and expensive to manage and can work against business outcomes. As OML increases, technology becomes a lever with which a business can increase its efficiency and innovation.

Put more simply – a low OML organization that scales up will disproportionately increase its IT and technology spending, with less return. A high OML level organization will efficiently spend on technology, increasing employee efficiency, per employee.

Man in casual clothing giving a presentation to seated employees in a "startup" environment.

Higher OML Organizations Are Transformative

Strategies in high OML organizations are built to be transformative. They are active rather than passive. They seek positive change and create their own destiny, rather than let it be dictated to them.

Lower OML organizations often find it difficult to conceptualize how new technologies can affect business planning. Also, increasingly, workers across all age groups desire to work for more technologically mature organizations.

So, what is your OML? Contact us today to find out. We can help you begin the process of increasing it.

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