Even before the pandemic came into the scene, the digital revolution was already underway. Although at the time, some companies could still afford to keep non-digital aspects of the business intact.

But with over 18 million confirmed COVID-19 cases worldwide and counting, companies today have few choices but to go all-in into the digital landscape.

What are some tips on how companies can successfully execute?

Apply new tools and approaches

Change starts internally. Before companies begin reaping the benefits of digital, the entire organization has to buy into the idea.

Teams and departments must adopt new tools-whether it's from IP-PBX system providers or 5G manufacturers-and embrace more agile ways of working.

To solidify these changes, companies must have the right culture that is open to innovation and rapid learning. There will be a lot of growing pains at the start, but these pain points are key learning opportunities for leaders to exploit.

A company that is mostly glacial in terms of pace and is resistant to change will eventually fall out of the competition.

Improve customers' digital experiences

The advent of the internet and the arrival of Google have altered consumer behaviors.

Before a purchase is finalized or service is availed of, people Google it. In other words, people do their research first. And when people make up their minds, they can just go and make online payments.

With the outbreak of COVID-19, this scenario is increasingly becoming the norm. Social distancing protocols and national mandates will reinforce these behaviors.

Companies must find ways to meet consumers where they are and improve their digital experiences. Whatever the nature of the business-be it media or food services-there is tremendous opportunity to establish trust and credibility that can significantly pay off in the long-term.

Additionally, customer feedback should be the driving force that companies use to improve their platforms and services.

Analyze the data

However, customer feedback and suggestions aren't the only ones that will inform companies' overall digital approach. How a team is implementing its strategies, and responding to challenges is also a source of insight.

With enough data, companies learn more about themselves and better measure their performance against competitors. In this hyper-competitive digital landscape, improving rapidly will be crucial.

Almost any operational aspect can be harnessed for data, but to do so requires expertise-or else companies would just be wasting precious time collecting information that won't be properly used. This is where data consultants may become quite invaluable.

When done right, collecting and analyzing the data can yield create new products or service lines.

Integrate machine learning

Aside from enlisting the support of external consultants, companies may also need to invest in machine learning.

At a certain point, it may be viable to use artificial intelligence (AI) to automate key business processes. This approach will be useful in removing any chance for errors and inefficiencies-whether it's in finance, task assignments, or business projections.

Companies must then develop synergies between AI and human capabilities. AI will be a crucial part of ensuring efficiency, but the human element will still be needed in exercising foresight and making good judgment calls.