Whenever there is talk of “digital transformation”, the alarm bells start ringing in many companies.
But if understood correctly, this topic is no cause for concern.
Everyone is currently talking about digitalization or digital transformation. It is not a marketing- hype. The fact that business processes must now be increasingly networked and automated with a view to future viability and competitiveness, is a necessity. Although it is nothing to be afraid of just because you “cannot do it”.
First of all, it must be clear: On principle, digitizing, networking and automating processes does not mean exchanging old software for new software, nor does it mean turning processes upside down. Of course, adaptations and innovations are necessary, but the target must be to make better use of the potential inherent in existing resources, workflows, information and competence.
How can the daily work processes be constantly expanded, more sensibly combined and made more efficient? This is what digital transformation is all about. Here are some examples that every company relates to from its daily handling of documents, e-mails and information sources:
Word processing: Documents often come from different applications. Contents cannot be displayed, attachments cannot be linked, files cannot be checked – potential wasted! However, if you provide a framework in which differences in format are eliminated and data structures are standardized, you can work with documents on a totally different level. Keyword forwarding, process assignment, archiving – potential utilized!
E-mail processing: More and more e-mails are recieved with increasingly larger file attachments. If you simply store them somehow, the memory is used up before you even get close to intelligent processing – potential wasted! If, on the other hand, you send a message to ten recipients and set it up so that the attachment is saved only once, but a reference is noted for each recipient, you not only save a lot of storage space, you have also already covered a large part of the legally compliant mail archiving – potential utilized!
Document storage: Paper correspondence is scanned and stored digitally, often at a central location. If you are looking for something in particular, you can end up searching for quite a long time – potential wasted! It makes more sense to bring the system directly into the filing process during scanning. For example, by scanning captured documents for keywords that have been defined as relevant for certain recipients and then delivering them immediately or storing them in an easy-to-find location – potential utilized!
Information provision: Topic-relevant information is scattered throughout the company at many sources. Often they cannot be accessed because user authorizations are not defined or media disruptions make a connection impossible – potential wasted! Instead: define so-called self-supporting archives. All sources are included, the required information can be specifically compiled using detailed search functions that is also presented in a defined, uniform framework – potential utilized!
These examples clearly show what can be achieved if the digital transformation is not seen as an obstacle, but as an “opportunity utilizer” for existing potential. As far as the IT and software required to support it is concerned, the market offers a wide range of products for all areas of activity. It does not have to be the “big” solution at all, which really only needs a fraction of this functionality anyway.
So: Don’t be afraid of the digital transformation – the opportunities are huge, more numerous than the (supposed) obstacles!
Author Christian Kowalewski is managing director of eebos GmbH.
He is looking forward to answering questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.