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Strategy in digital maturity as a foundation for success

The success of a digital transformation depends largely on the strategy that determines why the transformation takes place and when it is successful. A digital transformation is too complex and far-reaching to 'just do anything'.

A digital strategy is a preconceived plan that identifies how the organisation can better achieve organisational goals with the optimal use of digital assets. This gives both management and employees a certain direction to work towards.

The trick, of course, is to create a strategy that is neither too rigid nor too long-term and abstract to be practical. A good strategy includes measuring points at which the strategy can be adjusted where necessary.

Digital maturity

The presence and quality of the digital strategy greatly determines the organisation's digital maturity. Digital maturity indicates how the organisation deals with the organisational, informational, technological and cultural challenges of a digital transformation.

An organisation that has an idea of its digital maturity level has a foothold in determining which follow-up steps need to be taken to reach a higher level and thus realise the organisation's digital transformation.

To a higher level with digital transformation

The higher the digital maturity level, the better the organisation can survive in the rapidly changing digital world.

TIMAF developed a model to determine an organisation's digital maturity. This model analyses an organisation on four dimensions - Organisation, Information, Technology and Culture - and then determines what maturity level the organisation is at.

Levels of maturity

As you can see, there are five levels of digital maturity in the maturity model: Unmanaged, Beginning, Learning, Responsive and Predictive. The last two maturity levels are the goal of digital transformation: Responsive or Predictive.

At the Responsive level, the organisation is able to listen carefully to the signals from the various target groups and respond appropriately. The digital strategy is regularly adapted to changing circumstances.

The highest Predictive level is for those organisations that are able to let digital assets make independent decisions that serve the target groups even better. The organisation goes through a continuous transformation.

The role of strategy in digital maturity

In the main Organisation dimension, you measure maturity in terms of strategy, processes, business, governance and alignment.

The Strategy dimension looks at the extent to which the organisation has a strategy translated into a digital strategy, measuring and optimising on the achievement of the success factors.

Organisations with an optimal digital strategy have a concrete direction in mind, with well-developed success factors and indicators that are continuously measured and on which the strategy is continuously further optimised. This gives them a lasting lead over their competitors.

Determine the strategic maturity of your organisation

The TIMAF maturity model helps you to determine how mature your organisation is at, among other things, process management and which steps need to be taken to get to the higher desired level.

At the Unmanaged level, there is no focus on the importance of a digital strategy. There are 'strategic' documents, but these are often long-term plans that are little or not known to the tactical and implementation layer of the organisation.

At the Beginning level, there are already attempts to translate the organisational strategy into a digital strategy, or there is a 'digital section' in the strategy. But again, the digital strategy is still little known to the tactical and implementation layer of the organisation.

At the Learning Level, there is a digital strategy with clear success factors and concrete indicators. There is periodic measurement on those indicators and also improvement on those indicators.

At the Responsive level, there is a digital strategy supported by all layers in the organisation that is regularly measured and and adjusted. Strategy and execution go hand-in-hand.

At the Predictive level, there is continuous optimisation on the strategy and the optimisation process is so efficient that the tactical and execution layer can optimise strategies independently.

How mature is your digital strategy?

What level is your organisation at? If it is not Responsive or Predictive, there is still a lot of work to be done on the road to digital transformation. No 'cool tool' or 'agile UX' approach is going to close that gap.

A first start might be to create a digital strategy in the first place. The TIMAF Digital Strategy Game may be able to help with that.

Want to know more about the TIMAF maturity model? Then contact us without obligation at or call +31 (0)6 1446 5585.

Webinar: The role of strategy in digital transformation

Friday 23 June 2023 Erik Hartman will update you on the role of strategy in digital transformation using a case study.

You will be taken step by step in setting up a digital strategy and there will be plenty of room for interaction and questions with the participants.

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