Digital Transformation, Smart Factory, IoT or Industry 4.0 – many trends around digitalization concern SMEs. And rightly so - digital change challenges even tried and tested business models. Whether it be a large corporation or a midsize company: strategies, products and processes must be analyzed and adjusted to keep up with the digital age.
Fact is: Digital dinosaurs will become extinct. Companies which grasp on to their status quo lose market sectors or, in the worst case, disappear from the market altogether. Kodak, Quelle, Nokia or Blackberry are some prime examples of how digitalization can cause the downfall of even the most established of companies. That is why having the flexibility to constantly change is one of the most important factors of success in the future.
The advantages of digitalization are obvious - even for SMEs. New business models become a possibility, automation and Artificial Intelligence reduce costs and improve efficiency, new target markets and sales channels increase revenue, smart services raise levels of customer satisfaction. Many opportunities to add value!
Studies and surveys come to the same conclusion - German SMEs have fallen behind in digitalization. The comparatively low degree of digitalization of relevant business processes is already affecting the competitiveness of many companies today. Some consultants even estimate that nearly half of the midmarket distributors in Germany will have disappeared in the next 15 years.
The problem: many small and midsized businesses know that there is an urgency to digitize, but find difficulty in implementing new technological possibilities within their company. How and why will the new disruptive technologies change the daily routines of a midsized business? And what can companies do (maintaining a realistic budget) to remain competitive? There is still much requirement for individual consultation on the subject of digitalization.
The basic requirement for a future digital strategy is to know your level of digital maturity: The Digitalization Readiness Check uses a scientifically-based analysis to locate production companies looking toward a digital future and compares them to competition within your market environment.