Wouldn't it be great if you could buy a product that had 'digital transformation' built-in? I know what you're thinking: “If only!”

You understand there's more to it than tech. People, planning and processes play a rather important role in ensuring your digital services are addressing the ever-changing needs of your clients and customers.

And yet, your efforts do need to be built on a platform which makes it possible. Not just in the execution, but actually in supporting – and feeding into – all the key elements behind a successful digital transformation. 

Your digital platform needs to knit all the disparate elements together. This technological capability is the missing piece in many companies’ attempts at overhauling their digital estate.

Read on to discover:

  • Why many digital transformations are failing
  • Why agility is the key to success
  • What a dream platform looks like

Digital transformations are failing – here's why

The need to rapidly implement digital strategy has suddenly become more urgent. 70% of executives say the pandemic is likely to accelerate the pace of digital transformation, according to a survey by McKinsey. 

But all too often, budgets are wasted in the rush to transform.

A survey by HBR showed that most leaders reported poor returns on their digital investments. There are three main reasons why this might be:

  1. An inflexible digital strategy, implemented with static tools, which are unable to pivot with changes to the business environment and/or new customer learnings
  2. An inability to implement the lofty ambitions of the digital strategy
  3. An inability to scale up beyond the soft launch or minimum viable product 

A lack of agility is at the heart of the problem. Which is no wonder when you consider the complexities involved. This includes gathering data and insight which informs the digital strategy, building the digital services (for example, a large multi-lingual website estate), and the ability to evolve the offering based on user experience, customer feedback and business-wide learning.

There's a virtuous circle at play here. Learn, build, launch. Learn, build, launch. This is digital transformation in a nutshell: it's never one job then done. 

In today's marketplace, you need to launch quickly, learn fast and be able to adapt and expand your offering at speed. The solution is an agile way of working which brings together all the elements of a successful digital transformation: planning, people, processes and technology.

Transformation needs an agile 'Digital Experience Platform'

Static websites and working methodologies, where multiple teams are operating in multiple silos, is no longer fit for the digital era. An agile working methodology has now moved beyond a 'great-to-have' to a 'really-must-have'. That's why you need a 'Digital Experience Platform' (DXP) which is built to be agile. 

Sorry, DXP?

Where a Content Management System (CMS) enables you to write, track and publish content; a DXP is able to do all of this plus track the customer journey (the actions they take, the behaviours they exhibit, and their location) through the whole lifecycle of the purchase. 

DXP enables you to pull together all the complex aspects of multi-channel marketing and deliver relevant content wherever they are on the journey. It simplifies the whole personalisation process, providing the foundation for fast learning, rapid action and pinpoint messaging – all in one place.

But there are other elements of the DXP that need to be considered for it to be truly agile and capable of meeting the needs of enterprise businesses.


Open source: It needs to be built on an open source platform. Open source technology offers the best levels of security. The code is constantly being road tested by a community of developers who will spot any potential security flaws and put them right. It also reduces the cost that comes with a proprietary system. 

Another key benefit, is that the code is open to anyone. So a web development team can customise the code themselves. You don't just get what comes in the box, you can add to it. 

Low code: Low code platforms were once limited to providing pre-packed products for SMEs. But now you can have a low code platform built on top of open source technology with unlimited potential. So, whatever you want built as part of your digital transformation, it can be created and made available as a template for you to use as you see fit. In other words: you can have whatever drag-and-drop element your website estate needs.

Piece all this together and you've got the means of creating products, services and experiences at speed, all on a central and secure platform which is feeding in insights across multiple channels.

A Digital Experience Platform in action

At Coherence Digital, we have a fiendishly clever way of working which enables us to help businesses realise their digital ambitions at speed. It's probably the closest thing you can get to digital transformation in a box.

Here's how it works:

Acquia Site Studio and hosting: By utilising Acquia Site Studio, we are able to transform bespoke coded website design elements into drag-and-drop 'pieces'. That means we can build complex design elements just once, and then make them available to use as required by people with less (or zero) coding expertise. This enables us to work in an agile way, scale up websites at speed and massively reduce time to market. Acquia's secure cloud hosting ensures it's achieved securely.

Acquia CDP: We are plugged in to Acquia's customer data platform which pulls together customer data across multiple channels into a single database, allowing you to build a unified profile around each customer.

Drupal CMS: The backbone of our design system – an open source web content creator which is flexible and highly scalable – making it suitable for enterprise level website estates operating across different markets and territories.

Digital transformation: a real-life case study

We recently re-platformed 20 consumer healthcare brands operating in multiple markets and languages. The aim was simple: allow the client to focus on driving sales instead of fighting with glacial pace technology hosted on disparate platforms. 

The video below tells the story of how we transformed this global healthcare giant’s digital estate – at speed – and gave the company a new agile foundation. All websites and CRM are now hosted on one Digital Experience Platform. 

If you want to kickstart your digital transformation, we're happy to talk.