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Digital Frustration – it’s real and it’s a problem.

What is digital frustration?

It’s the feeling of being overwhelmed and frustrated by the number of options associated with any tech-related decision.

Out of the 7.7 billion humans on earth, almost all of us experience digital frustration multiple times a day. When your computer won’t turn on, Google doesn’t have the answer to your question, or you don’t know what technology to use for the new project at work – you’re experiencing digital frustration.

Why you’re digitally frustrated

How do you know you’re using the right blend of technology, hiring people with the right digital skills, and are serving your customers through the right digital channels? Usually the answer is that you don’t, and that’s okay because (I’m guessing) it isn’t your job.

Over the past 10 years there has been a tremendous surge in software development. There is a Software As A Service (SaaS) for everything from task management, extensive HR systems, all the way to software that retrieves customer feedback to help you make better data-driven decisions for the future state of your company.  

Rise of SaaS and digital frustration go hand-in-hand

The growth in software actually makes it harder to find good solutions because often what’s advertised and what’s delivered are vastly different. To the untrained eye two products may seem similar yet serve vastly different purposes.

When the right piece of software is used by the right individual for the right purpose, it works exactly how it’s supposed to. However, that’s rarely the case. Business owners of small to medium sized companies often don’t have a digital background, and don’t want to spend 20 hours per week learning an entirely new skill set – they want to focus on the business they have built.

Larger enterprises are tacking on departments like ‘Innovation’ and ‘change management’ to identify how to make better digital decisions. But the simple fact that they are adding these departments onto the existing organizational structure is why they aren’t seeing results. Becoming a digital company starts from within and needs to be baked into the core business strategy of any company, no matter the size.


Digital frustration is important in 2019

I know, it seems weird to say that being digitally frustrated is important.  The reason we say this is because individuals that are experiencing digital frustration most heavily will be the ones most willing to affect change – either at their own company or at the organization they work for. This is a result of a shift in mindset from ‘why is this so annoying’ to ‘does it have to be this annoying?’.

Buzzwords take away trust in the market

Terms like ‘innovation’ and ‘digital transformation’ have been thrown around so much over the past few years that it’s made it hard to understand what they actually mean – it can seem like a lot of smoke and mirrors which leads to a lack of trust in the market.

Both of these terms represent actions that a company takes to solve existing problems by developing a tech-based solution. However, these ‘movements’ have consistently failed to focus on the steps needed before action is taken – all the moments of digital frustration leading to a change in mindset.

Digital frustration leads to digital transformation

In order to properly understand the need and depth of undergoing digital transformation (ie. becoming a digital company), business owners and employees need to first experience digital frustration. This causes a shift in mindset as you start to realize all the small (and big) problems that can be solved, or made less annoying, by using the right blend of technology, tools and processes.

The next big question is how to overcome digital frustration and invest in the right transformation for your business. Where do you start?


Overcoming digital frustration – The Ecosystem Approach

We talk a lot of the problem of being digitally frustrated. The good news is that we’ve created a solution that reduces your digital frustration – the ecosystem approach. In an upcoming blog we take you through what a digital ecosystem is and why it’s the only way businesses will be successful long term. Want to learn about it sooner? Drop us a line at!

Dana Doswell

Author Dana Doswell

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