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Why Leadership Plays a Vital Role in Digital Transformation

iStock 1334378916 - Global Banking | Finance

Katina headshot - Global Banking | FinanceBy Katina Male

The world of work has changed forever. As we’ve now fully adapted to hybrid working in a post-COVID era, “digital” remains at the core of business for any organization. However, many companies are still at the beginning stages of their legacy system and legacy software modernization processes, frightened by the time and effort necessary to successfully complete all stages of digital transformation. But considering the increasing importance of digital maturity for all aspects of business, how can enterprise leaders succeed in this journey?

They must see digital transformation as a chance to reorganize outdated processes and prepare the organization for the new digital environment. In this article, Glue42’s innovation strategists provide some tips for leaders on how to effectively navigate the transition.

Ensure a learning phase when introducing digital transformation

Every organization on the path to digital transformation needs the right tutors and technology experts to assist their leaders through the implementation phase. Taking the time to thoroughly research the best technology and methodology for your company so you can make an educated decision is of utmost importance.

Communicating the change story so employees can understand where the organization is headed, why it is changing, and why this process matters is equally important. Leaders also need to ensure that their teams have enough time to adjust to the transformations’ changes and ease into them.

Inspire a new culture and mindset by improving workflow 

It’s often a challenge to shift the mindset of employees who have an established workflow. Therefore, it is mandatory to encourage them to upgrade their skill set while also ensuring that their expectations for improved productivity and better connectivity are truly met.

Legacy system modernization is one of the most common problems in digital transformation. Introducing new technology is a challenge but smart solutions can simplify and optimize cumbersome and prone-to-error processes. For example, a desktop integration platform like Glue42 improves workflow by organizing all enterprise applications into a unified desktop user experience. Desktop application integration significantly reduces time and increases productivity.

The desktop operating systems we use today were designed decades ago when the complexity of the way users interacted with IT systems was significantly lower. In the context of an enterprise, where the average business professional uses a multitude of web and desktop applications daily, a desktop integration platform like Glue42 can become the enterprise-wide host for all applications. It optimizes processes, improves workflows, and thus accelerates digital transformation.

For organizations, updating legacy software and systems and having the most innovative and efficient equipment means increased productivity and high performance, which results in improved business outcomes. By not providing the right tools, business leaders may set employees up for failure.

It is crucial to spend enough time and effort developing the right culture and updating legacy applications and processes is an indispensable part of that. When leaders inspire vision and purpose and provide support, they create a nurturing environment where experiments and continuous learning turn into a rewarding collaboration.

Encourage feedback

The path to digital transformation success is long and complex and collaboration at all levels is required. A digital transformation leader should track the new learning processes and encourage feedback, ensuring that all employees are empowered to work differently and keep up with the faster pace of business. Leaders need to provide them with an opportunity to share their experience with the new technologies and processes, allow for an open dialogue and be prepared to experiment with their suggestions to discover new ways of improving workflows.

Of course, leaders have an important role to play in this too. They need to lead by example and let go of old practices. It is advisable to consider leadership-development programs and embrace the new mindsets and behaviors that digital transformation requires.

Invest in your people

It is imperative for organizations to introduce workforce strategies that are aligned with their digital transformation strategy and will help them meet their future goals. Developing talent and skills at all levels of the organization is an essential factor for the success of a digital transformation effort. It is also imperative to actively reveal employees’ talents and encourage their willingness to learn, as well as to acknowledge their success. This in turn motivates team members to recognize the company as a place to grow and find meaning in their work. It makes them feel valued for their efforts, which can boost morale and improve productivity.

Further, as the workforce implications of digitization are significant, leaders will need to invest in and hire a new set of skills and capabilities. They should acknowledge the rewards of developing well-funded and robust approaches to talent and invest the right amount in digital teams.


Digital transformation will take organizations to a future of connected experiences that drive great productivity and reshape employees’ skills and talents. An innovative leader should think of employees as the main force of the digital transformation process. Transforming an enterprise is an effort that requires a fundamental change in the way a leader sees their employees and processes. They should consider legacy technology modernization if they strive to nurture agility that augments the organization’s abilities.

Global Banking & Finance Review


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