Organizations are increasingly initiating and expanding their digital transformation initiatives to become more data-driven. Given that such digital transformations are highly complex and idiosyncratic endeavors, organizations striving to become a data-driven organization (DDO) have many options on where to start. To better understand such transformation starting points, we analyzed 13 companies of various industries and sizes currently undertaking DDO transformations. On this empirical basis, we find that top-level managers embark on transformation journeys by either focusing on the transformation foundations (asset-driven, workforce-driven), or on the outcome (exploitative use case-driven, explorative use case-driven), with each starting point showing different DDO elements being addressed first. Our data suggest that the selection of a specific starting point is mainly based on managers’ understandings of a DDO and the motivation to become such an organization. Finally, our work points to advantages and disadvantages of the respective starting points. Contributions and practical implications are discussed.
Fischer, Hannes; Wiener, Martin; and Strahringer, Susanne, "Embarking on the Digital Transformation Journey Toward a Data-Driven Organization: Empirical Insights Into Transformation Starting Points" (2023). ECIS 2023 Research Papers. 298.