Digital transformation is one of the most dominant trends in the development of enterprises. The concept assumes the implementation of various technological innovations enhancing the way a company operates. What is digital transformation in practice, and what business value can it bring to the organization?
The World Economic Forum Report 2018 shows that the global labor market is beginning to change. It is shifting the boundary between tasks performed by people and activities performed by machines. In 2018, the average amount of working time performed by people accounted for 71% of the total time, and the machine working time was only 29% (survey conducted among companies from 12 different industries). In 2022, companies expect these proportions to change. In the near future machines will be responsible for up to 58% of the total working time.
Every company will have to adapt to the digital age someday. Some industries need to transform their business models now, while others are starting to adopt process innovations gradually.
Digital transformation – definition
Digital transformation is an inevitable process, regardless of the size of the enterprise. It is frequently described as the integration of digital technology with all areas of the company’s operations. Thanks to digital transformation, it is possible to use the collected data to create innovative services and expand the existing offer.
The scope of digital transformation includes activities related to the modification of business and organizational processes. It aims to take full advantage of the opportunities that modern technological solutions bring. It assumes the use of the solutions offered by Industry 4.0, especially the Internet of Things and artificial intelligence. Digital transformation can be different for every company. For this reason, it is difficult to provide a unified definition that applies to all enterprises.
Digital transformation in practice
New technologies provide a natural competitive advantage, and failure to use them will slow down your company’s development. Digital transformation has many minor benefits that, taken together, contribute to business success in three main areas:
Currently, most business processes in companies are based on traditional operations with the addition of IT tools in several places, which are more of an addition than integral parts of the business. The more innovative the company, the more IT tools it uses. However, many companies still operate in traditional ways (for example, they still use paper instead of electronic versions of documents).
Well-designed and optimized business processes will allow companies to achieve more than before. Digital transformation is not only about adding new tools. It is a complete remodeling of how enterprises operate now. The goal is to fully use the potential of IT tools and the opportunities they provide and transfer companies to industry 4.0.
Every change in the company is an investment that is expected to pay for itself over time. The deeper the changes, the greater the costs, but it will also increase the expected return on investment (ROI).
According to many studies, digital transformation can reduce the costs of individual business processes by up to 70-90%, thanks to artificial intelligence and the automation of repetitive processes thanks to chatbots. This trend has already started to be used by medium and large companies, gaining a competitive advantage. Each investment in new technologies should pay off very quickly and at the same time relieve employees from tedious or repetitive activities.
Today, the company must guarantee the privacy and security of the data entrusted to them and properly document it. For this reason, it is significant to implement IT solutions based on artificial intelligence and machine learning into internal processes. Unfortunately, now the mere computerization of processes and the use of cloud solutions may turn out to be insufficient. Companies need to reach for solutions based on AI and ML, which most effectively minimize the risk of cyberattacks.
Digital transformation allows companies to kill several birds with one stone–increase security, minimize the costs of ongoing processes and achieve even greater efficiency. It is essential throughout the process to ensure that data is adequately protected and safe. This challenge is noticed as one of the most considerable threats to digitization. Therefore it is included as one of the priorities of the implemented changes.
Digital transformation in your business
There are endless reasons why every brand should go digital – and not just because the whole world already does it. Of course, the digital transformation of business is a bit more complicated than the transition from traditional mail to email. It is about using technology to improve customer service, supply chain, stakeholder management, and overall business processes. So when we talk about digital transformation, we mean real transformation. To take full advantage of digital technologies, you need to prepare your business for versatile changes.
Switching to digital tools for business doesn’t have to be as laborious as it sounds. Sometimes even the slightest effort can bring significant success!
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