Digital Transformation, two words increasingly used together to recall the concept that all that is digital redefines, molds, changes, sometimes devastatingly, both corporate processes and society and, therefore, people. A digital transformation based on data, which needs not only the knowledge and skills of Digital Scientists and the technologies that enable change, but also security, solid infrastructures, open ecosystems and knowledge of the core processes to be transformed.
“More than Digital Transformation – says Paolo Pandozy, CEO of Engineering, in the recently published White Paper on Digital Transformation – we prefer to talk about digital journey, a journey in which we stand alongside our customers with a consolidated knowledge of their processes and a full control over new technologies. A journey which can no longer be postponed should we wish to be among the first to benefit from the new digital approaches. An extraordinary journey, not without risks, to be transformed into as many opportunities if undertaken with the partners who make innovation their mission”.
What are the key enablers?
People. As the paper states, in order to best tackle digital transformation, which involves a continuous change in paradigms, technologies and business models, it is necessary to have a human capital able to cope with this change in an agile manner. People with Dynamic Capabilities, i.e. people with the useful ability for companies to act within a constant state of transformation and to promptly manage the uncertainty resulting from technological discontinuities.
Training. One of the factors which enables Digital Transformation to develop dynamic capabilities is the training of human resources. A strategic investment to support not only people’s ability to deftly adapt to change, but to become themselves proactive carriers of new needs and requirements to be met in a new way.
Data. There is no transformation for the better without the availability of data which can be processed into useful information in order to understand where and how to act. Data and the knowledge that derives from their processing are at the center of the innovation processes of enterprises.
Technologies. When talking of digital transformation, we can’t do without the technological drivers which allow the improvement of business processes. IoT, which can extend the capabilities of the 5 senses and collect data that can be reused; AI, which feeds on data in order to interpret these immediately and implement a data-driven management; Augmented, Virtual and Mixed Reality, which transport the digital world into the physical space, modifying interactions among people, the user experience and the use of media; Cloud, which enables SaaS solutions which can also be chosen by small and medium enterprises with the advantage of being able to manage great quantities of data safely; Blockchain, the emerging driver useful to certify processes; Digital Twin, i.e. the possibility of creating a digital copy of business activities in order to run simulations before applying decisions to the real world; Robot Process Automation to automate repetitive tasks, freeing up economic, physical and human resources to be used in activities with greater added value; CyberSecurity, inevitable in order to ensure protection and security of all corporate resources.
Research. Research projects are actual innovation laboratories where, through a process of co-sharing and co-creation which involves the entire ecosystem of the supply chain, new ideas, new projects and new solutions are born to then be introduced to the company.
Are experts needed for transforming?
Digital Transformation applied to core processes, vital for the company, guarantees disruptive effects. But to obtain these you need the presence of experts in traditional technologies, frontier technologies and especially experts in business processes, because the transformation takes place primarily in business models rather than in technology and it occurs the moment you build an open ecosystem in which the contamination of ideas is encouraged and supported.
A new interaction between man and technology?
Digital Transformation, Engineering’s paper states, must be understood as a phenomenon which focuses on the person who, with his/her new skills and perspectives, is the engine that drives change within the company and who, in the same way, is the recipient of this change.
“In the traditional computer paradigm – says Francesco Bonfiglio, Chief Executive Officer of Engineering D.HUB –technology aims to model the phenomena of the real world through an increasing capacity for calculation and precision. Synthesis, emulation and virtualization have in fact created a progressive detachment between man and the real world, sometimes pathological. It is fascinating to note how the new digital paradigm actually achieves a reversal of this phenomenon and a rapprochement between the two. Thanks to the continuous integration between people and the surrounding eco, social, natural and industrial systems, in digital transformation the technological evolution itself, which for decades has been a decoupling layer between man and reality, becomes an instrument to read, understand and interact with the latter as never before”.