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Digital strategy: Creating a roadmap for sustained digital transformation

Summary: If Covid halted your digital strategy—or if you are starting from scratch—it's time to get back on the road. Developing a digital roadmap now will pave the way for consistent optimization and innovation.

Illustration of a curving road with points of interest along the way, including Benchmarking Data, KPIs, Key Interval Milestones, Anticipated Upgrades, Known Large-scale projects, Maintenance and Continuous Improvement, Opportunities and Innovation

The last two years have completely changed how healthcare operates. The shift to digital delivery of everything from doctor’s visits to fundraising events has illuminated the importance of digital infrastructure, laying bare both risks and opportunities.

Now is the time to evaluate your digital footprint alongside your system’s strategic goals. By taking the time to create a roadmap now, you set your organization up for a more predictable, affordable, and successful approach to achieving strategic goals.

What is a strategic digital roadmap?

A strategic digital roadmap takes into account your entire digital footprint—website, integrations, back office, intranet, marketing automation, etc.—and aligns it with your corporate strategy to create a multi-year plan that anticipates both technological and operational changes.

Although most health systems operate with a three, five, or ten-year strategic plan, the majority do not have their digital strategy in alignment with that plan. Your digital strategy is as important as your corporate strategy, and should receive the same degree of attention.

Your strategic digital roadmap will define:

  • Benchmark data

  • KPIs

  • Key interval milestones (6 months, 1 year, 3 year, etc.)

  • Anticipated upgrades

  • Known large-scale projects

  • Maintenance and continuous improvement

  • Opportunities for innovation

Aligning your digital strategy with corporate strategy

Here are some key ideas to keep in mind to make sure your digital strategy and corporate strategy are working in concert.

Your Position in the Market

Differentiation, that broad concept that affects your branding to your operations, comes into play in your digital strategy as well. Beyond landing pages and sharp copy, this includes the entire user experience on your website.

Growth plans

Mergers and acquisitions are becoming more and more the norm as systems seek ways to gain a competitive edge. If your organization has growth by acquisition on the horizon, your digital tools need to be built to scale, including things like:

  • Expanded locations with location-based personalization

  • An intranet that can serve additional teammates

  • Robust telehealth tools

Preparing your strategic roadmap

When approaching your digital roadmap, we recommend operating by the 70/20/10 rule.

Existing strategy—70%

70% of your budget and effort should be put towards what has been proven to be successful and what will guarantee a return on investment. Push the boundaries of what is known by investing in improving the existing. Examples include:

  • Upgrades and maintenance to your existing platform

  • New or more robust marketing automation

  • New or expanded content resources

  • A/B testing content and action buttons on existing high-trafficked pages

  • Upgraded security

  • Accessibility

Incremental strategy—20%

This 20% of your roadmap should address growth areas that have some proposed—but not fully guaranteed—return. These are the things you’re testing out that have the potential to set your organization apart from your peers and competitors. These include:

  • Chatbots

  • AI and robust personalization

  • Integrated interactive elements

Disruptive strategy—10%

The final 10% is reserved for those bold moves, your digital BHAG (Big, Hairy, Audacious Goals) if you will. These are the ideas that are really untested, and may be something proprietary you develop with your digital partner. Guard these resources for your most daring ideas.

Reason One digital strategy

Creating a strong digital roadmap is no longer a nice-to-have—it’s critical for success and a sustainable approach to your web properties. The Reason One team brings a multidisciplinary team to the table with our clients, ensuring that each element—UX, design, technology, marketing—is represented in your digital strategy. Want to chat more? Drop us a line!