stages of digital transformation

6 Stages of Digital Transformation: Full Definition

What are the six stages of digital transformation? How can businesses learn from this?

Read on to learn more.

Digital Transformation in the Post-COVID World

Today, digital transformation is no longer a trend. If anything, it is essential for all organizations.

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For one thing, we’ve seen how the COVID-19 pandemic changed how things work. And that’s also true for businesses.

If only companies weren’t too lax and comfortable with outdated processes. Then, they wouldn’t be so shocked when quarantine protocols were placed.

So, we see many businesses closed their doors. Companies have gone bankrupt. Why? They fail to see the need for disruption.

Digital transformation takes a long time, if not never-ending. So, it would be too late for most of them to apply it.

Now, we are in an era where technology is fast pacing. Businesses don’t just need technology to stand out. More than anything else, they need to survive.

With that, digital transformation is a way to start. But, what are the processes of doing so?

The Need for the Stages of Digital Transformation

DX is not an overnight strategy. So, it involves steps and stages.

In DX, the first thing to transform is the company’s perspective. Everyone has to be prepared to do some big and small changes.

Thinking about how urgent DX is will help most businesses. Still, a lot of them don’t know where to start.

That’s why Altimeter created the six stages of digital transformation. This will help them progress through their goals.

Now, what are these stages? Let’s find out.

Six Stages of Digital Transformation

  1. Business As Usual
  2. Present and Active
  3. Formalized
  4. Strategic
  5. Converged
  6. Innovative and Adaptive

Business As Usual

A lot of businesses are still stuck at this stage. At first, they may think that they don’t need to change. 

Even now, some are still stubborn about transforming. For one, they are comfortable with how things are.

But in reality, all they have are these:

  • outdated technology
  • lack of digital understanding
  • traditional marketing

Present and Active

In this stage, they start to see the need for DX. Then, they think it’s time to get out of their comfort zone.

So, they begin to experiment with technologies. Departments will use basic technologies. 

They now understand the customer journey. Others would even invest in workshops. But, these will be a scattered adoption.

The changes they do won’t bring big effects to the whole company.


At this point, they see the bigger picture. So, they speed up their transformation.

They will also notice more changes, such as:

  • use of data for making decisions
  • people-focused culture
  • awareness training


In this stage, everyone in the organization will appreciate the changes. For one, they see the benefits of doing so.

Then, they will make short- and long-term goals. So, they don’t just focus on targeting small problems.


Here, they will see DX as a part of their company, and not just a strategy. So, they will have better culture and future.

As a result, they make new services and products. Also, they will transform in a unified way.

Innovative and Adaptive

Finally, this is when they applied technologies in all areas. They also start to look for more ways to innovate.

But, if not done well, they can go back to normal. So, they should continue to think that they need to change.

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