Key Ideas to Digitise Your Business Processes and Stay Ahead of the Competition

Tuesday, 3 March 2020

The digitisation of business processes is a growing trend among EU Member States, 68% of whom have put programmes in place to foster it, according to the Digital Transformation Scoreboard 2018. Thus, companies are becoming more competitive; that is why we believe any enterprise trying to expand should harness the potential created by new technologies such as AI or IoT. When done right, digital solutions can result in a higher level of efficiency as well as a reduction in workloads and costs. This article includes some ideas as to how to get started with the digital transformation of your business.

Where to Start Digitising Your Business Processes?

The most important step before digitising your business environment is to identify where andhow to start the process. This will depend on your sector and the areas you want to improve to make your company more efficient and competitive; digital transformation would not look the same in a logistics centre and in a bookshop. If we read the European Commission’s DESI Report 2018 - based on Eurostat data - we can see the percentage of EU companies that implemented specific digital solutions:

  • 94% created a functioning website or homepage
  • 77% added interactive features into their website
  • 75% incorporated a faster broadband connection
  • 38% pay to advertise on the internet
  • 38% sell products online with at least 1% turnover

These are only a few examples, mostly geared towards communicating with or attracting clients; this is merely the tip of the iceberg. If you envision the bigger picture for your company, then you will be able to decide which aspect you want to boost first. Once you have digitised your business processes, further development and success will follow.

How Deep Should Your Digitalisation Go?

Deciding whether you want to change your business gradually or all at once is another matter to consider; all the solutions aforementioned can be implemented without significant disruptions to your structure or working processes, but real restructuring may require a deeper sort of digitisation. The following examples are more complex to incorporate, but their performance can result in a remarkable increase in efficiency.

1. Internet of Things

This technology can create a productive digital business environment; as a result, your company will be better equipped to engage with the customers, after collecting the necessary data. According to the Digital Transformation Scoreboard 2018, 91% of companies surveyed implemented IoT for this very reason, the second one being the analysis of information about their products, services and employees.

The Internet of Things has proven itself essential in examples such as smart bin programmes, automated warehouses, smart locks or logistics systems; it does not matter what sector you are in, this tool can help you become more competitive.

2. Artificial Intelligence

Although AI has been around for a while, it seems to have been adopted mostly by young companies, as we can see in the Digital Transformation Scoreboard mentioned above. Out of the respondents surveyed, 90% of them believed implementing this technology had a positive outcome. Artificial intelligence has become capable of learning natural language, which can greatly improve areas such as customer service.

These solutions are not the only path; you can achieve the digitisation of your business processes successfully through many options: big data and analytics, 3D printing, robotics or virtual reality, among others. Find the best road towards your goal with EIT Digital’s free online MOOC through Coursera, or become an expert with our on-site masterclass in collaboration with the KTH Executive School. Choose the right tools for your business!

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