The first step towards digital change is identifying in which stage the organization is to force its evolution by means of an effective strategy. In this sense, we have two options: opting for a simple digitization process without the implementation of certain tools that align with the business model or choosing the so-called ‘culture of innovation’, which is not defined as a phase, but as a way for the organization itself to perform.
In order to understand that digital transformation responds to a global and comprehensive change, there must be a desire to achieve excellence in all areas, which implies a change of mentality and internal approaches.
Digital change in tourism companies must be focused on customer experience, processes and operations, and new business models.
Customer experience is relevant, both in the inspiration phase and at the time of booking or making the trip. The main challenge is adding value throughout these phases, and new technologies are the way to provide the industry with a greater understanding of demand. Regarding processes and operations, automation becomes crucial in order to provide greater flexibility to workers and thus have better performance management, so having a clear purpose, vision and motivated people is essential. Finally, in terms of new business models, the integration of technologies favors the appearance of new and innovative models that involve a digital conversion of processes and new digital businesses.
If we focus on the role of tourism companies and businesses personnel, it must be emphasized that for the digital change to occur in all areas, it is essential that all members of the personnel take part in the process, with the involvement of management being essential and decisive in this transformation.
It is worth remembering that digital change in an organization is complex since it involves rethinking and reorganizing processes, products, services, customers, business models, talent, etc. And while companies can start with small changes, the truth is that in most cases it is necessary to have specialized external providers, whether startups or entrepreneurs, to ensure a successful digital transformation. These are the so-called open innovation models.