An Associate Professor of Information Systems at the University of Ghana Business School, Prof John Effah has advised the government and organisations to perceive Ghana’s digital transformation agenda as a progressive process that ought to be pursued holistically.
He asserted that digital transformation is an evolution and not an event, hence the over-concentration on technological transformation without a corresponding transformation in the people, work structures and social norms/behaviours could defeat the country’s digital transformation agenda.
He is thus advocating the adoption of a sociotechnical framework and a dynamic process which will encompass digital devices and environment, digital training and education for the citizenry as well as a redesign in the current work structure where fixed work locations, fixed time of work and remuneration regime will be replaced with remote or shift working system, flextime work schedules and performance based pay system.
This, Prof Effah says, will translate into productivity, effectiveness, convenience, lower service cost, 24/7 service delivery and improved data generation and availability.
Prof Effah was speaking at the 7th International Conference on Business Management and Entrepreneurial Development (ICBMED 2022), where he was the keynote speaker. His paper was entitled, “Digital transformation as a Sociotechnical and Dynamic Process.”
The annual ICBMED is organised by the University of Professional Studies, Accra and this year’s edition was under the theme, “Digital transformation: A catalyst for accelerated business development and economic growth”.
The conference brought together researchers, business practitioners, policymakers and educators to discuss and explore research-based solutions to developmental challenges in Africa.
Prof. Effah said: “It is not just a question about technological transformation but digital transformation must be holistic. It must be looking at all components if it can become a catalyst for economic development and business development.”
He added that “Digital transformation is an evolution. It’s not an event; It’s not a one-time thing such that an organisation or a nation will say that I have digitally transformed. Digital transformation evolves from physical, electronic, management, automation to smart self-services and seamless real-time information flow. We need to move with the times because the technological environment is changing.”
Prof Effah further stated that it is imperative to close the widening digital gap between the rich and the poor as well as urban and rural dwellers if Ghana were to climb higher on the digital transformation ladder.