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Driven by the combination of ever-growing digitization and evolving consumer demands, digital transformation is the use of new technologies to drive significant business improvements.

But what is digital transformation really about? Or did we just simply digitize old behaviors?

Just copying the old patterns and augment them or maybe even disrupt them with new technology is not transformation or innovation. If businesses want to outpace the disruption that is happening in the market, they need to equip themselves with technology that will help them adapt to change quickly.

“40 per cent of executives and managers cite a lack of urgency in the company as the biggest barrier to digital transformation.”

Four key building blocks for Digital Transformation:

  1. 1. Cloud

Cloud stands for simplicity, time to value and speed of innovation.

  1. 2. Mobile

Mobile takes the freedom and connectedness of the cloud further by allowing greater access.

  1. 3. Data

Using the right data in the right context means smarter decisions, new opportunities, and ultimately a big competitive advantage.

  1. 4. Networks.

Networks provide the platform for people, employees, and customers to share their experiences, access content, and other services, and do their job better.

“According to analysts by 2016 think that 75 percent of all IT purchases will be cloud-based or hybrid.”

New sets of rules that a company has to adapt to in order to survive:

  • Millennial mindset: Fundamental change in the way we work and think about leadership
  • Connection of everything: People to people, business to business, and business to people
  • Consumerization of IT: More people expect to enjoy life at work as much as life at home

Important considerations when it comes to cloud and mobile?

  • Privacy
  • Availability at any time
  • Security

“As studies show, more than 60 per cent of CEO's expect 15 to 50 of their earnings growth in the next 5 years to come from technology-enabled business innovations.”

Challenges to Digital Transformation in companies:

  • Digital proficiency

Recognize the different levels of digital proficiency. Not everyone will adapt easily to digital transformation. Some may even resist. Inertia, internal politics and defensive attitudes could all pose a problem.

  • Legacy systems

Lack of integration makes the overall solution less efficient. Ripping and replacing is not a good business case either. So capitalize on what works and transform where you need more speed. You can adopt cloud solutions that are still tied to existing systems.

  • Security

There could be a trade-off between functionality and security.

  • Jobs becoming obsolete

It is predicted that about half of job categories may be taken over by machines or systems in the next two decades.

Real-life application of Digital Transformation:

Kaeser Compressors use data and network to its advantage:

  • Specialized robots analyze the performance of the compressors and issue alerts in case of malfunctions.
  • Installed compressors are equipped with sensors, which constantly send out data for predictive maintenance.

Benefits TIMKEN gain by extending their ERP system with a cloud-based human resources capability:

  • A faster task completion rate
  • A combination of mobile and social capabilities
  • Greater efficiency through an intuitive UI

93 per cent of the employees agree and would say yes to a focus on digital transformation.”