Tony Moroney is Managing Partner of Beta Digital. Based in both Dublin and London, a specialist digital transformation advisory firm, enabling firms to adapt and be competitive in a digital world. Utilising proprietary digital maturity measurement and assessment tools, we enable leaders to focus on the why and how of transformation. This ensures there is real clarity of purpose and alignment around future business models and culture. The focus needs to be on transformation, the digital part (of digital transformation) is secondary.
What are your main priorities and goals in your role?
Our goal is to simplify digital transformation, creating the context and buy-in for business change, including customer and employee experience. We show organisations how to measure their digital maturity i.e. how far they have come on their digital journey relative to their environment / market. This creates the basis for real change and addresses every part of the organisation so that efforts are focused and optimal results can be achieved.
What are your biggest challenges?
Digital transformation is not defined and this creates a lot of ambiguity and misconceptions in most organisations. Usually, there are big gaps in terms of what digital transformation actually means and more often than not, differences of opinion remain unsaid. Our challenge is to unearth these differences and with the leadership team ensure everyone is focused on the same things with the same level of understanding and buy-in.
How has your business strategy been adapted in the context of the Covid-19 crisis?
Like everyone else, our business has essentially moved online, including our consulting, mentoring and training. We have found the transition rewarding in that delivering change and innovation works just as well in an online world as it does in an office environment. Indeed, the speed at which our customers adapted has been particularly satisfying.
What are the challenges facing your industry going forward?
Many businesses think they have transformed in the past few months. In reality, most have responded to a crisis and in the process, utilised digital tools, to stay open and keep their employees and customers safe. As leaders know, changing the mindset and culture of an organisation to be truly customer-centric, takes much more than this. Creating the space however, to see beyond the immediate problems is always a challenge in a crisis.
What new trends are emerging in your industry?
Funny enough, digital transformation has come center-stage. I think organisations now realise that they should have been further along the digital transformation curve. Those who were more digital going into the crisis, clearly did better. Notwithstanding this, every business has learnt a lot in recent months and the onus is on boards and leadership teams to capture benefits and build-on what they have learnt to reposition their business for the future.
Are there any major changes you would like to see in your sector?
I think there is undue focus on technology solutions when in reality organisations really need to focus on why and how they should change. A good way to think about this is to ask yourself “if we were starting tomorrow, would we do things differently?” Critically, digital transformation is as much about culture as it is about technology. Nothing really changes, bar some of the technology, if all you change is the latter.
Are you finding any skills gaps in the market?
I think there are undoubtedly gaps in the market, particularly in areas such as digital maturity, innovation, design thinking and customer experience. I also think technology is considered in a narrow sense and that the emphasis needs to shift to how technology can support, enable and accelerate digital transformation.
How will Brexit affect you, or have you started to feel the effects already?
Brexit is another catalyst for change and is yet another reason why firms need to digitally transform. We operate out of Dublin and London and expect demand for our services to increase in both Ireland and the UK, particularly as organisations start to consider how their customers, markets and business will change.
How do you define success and what drives you to succeed?
I am passionate about what I do, so being driven is part and parcel of who I am. For me, success is about making a positive impact on our customers and their businesses. Helping our clients to lead digital transformation and deliver real change and innovation, is very rewarding.
What’s the best advice you’ve been given, or would give, in business?
I love the phrase “a mind once stretched by an idea, never regains its original dimension.” For the world we live in, where the rate of change is accelerating, everyone needs to invest time in understanding the endless possibilities for their business going forward.
I am also a big fan of reverse mentoring i.e. business leaders spending time with their younger “digital native” employees to understand their expectations as consumers. They are the future!
What have been your highlights in business over the past year?
Founding Beta Digital with my business partners Louise O’Conor and Paul Doyle. Having launched last year, we really have achieved a lot (despite the pandemic) and are really well positioned to help organisations thrive in a digital world.
What’s next for your company?
We will continue to grow our business in Ireland and the UK and in the process, expand our team with like-minded experts who are committed to help organisations deliver digital transformation. We also have a lot of commitments on the training front including our virtual training course in October, as well as a number of digital programmes for universities, executive education and training institutes. All told, we will be busy!
What opportunities or plans for growth do you see in 2020/21?
We believe there is a very significant opportunity for expert consulting firms such as Beta Digital. Firms more so than ever, need advice and support that is both independent and unvested, from people who are hands-on and have practical experience of delivering digital transformation.
Where do you want your business/brand to be this time next year?
We have ambitious plans for our business. We are confident that we can add even greater value to our existing and future customers. By this time next year, we want to be recognised as the trusted partner of choice for digital transformation.