The human factor in times of digital transformation: What is the key to a successful transformation of an organization?

The buzzword „digital transformation“ is on everyone’s lips in times of industry 4.0, big data and blockchain. The Top Trending Procurement Topics determined by us confirm this: The implementation of automation and digitization also represents one of the most important strategies for increasing efficiency in the areas of procurement and supply chain. In the past, we have already reported on tools and solutions that are used by procurement departments to optimize their processes and thus increase the value contribution in the company. What challenges do you see for yourself at the beginning of a new job or in your daily work as a manager?

The human factor in digital transformation

However, the human factor must not be forgotten here, on which the digital transformation and the associated acceleration of the world of work also has considerable effects. This means in concrete terms: If a buyer’s job once mainly consisted of generating orders, it is now increasingly developing into a strategic interface between suppliers and customers. Operational tasks are becoming less important, while strategic and innovative issues with an influence on company added value are increasingly being managed by the buyer. The requirements portfolio for its core competencies is extended by agility, system affinity and collaboration capability.

The challenge of sustainability

Many CPOs are confronted with the questions of how they can ensure the sustainability of their own organization and how they can successfully accompany and support their employees in changing organization, technology and/or space. Unfortunately, it is a fact that transformation is often halved due to inadequate implementation and valuable potential is lost. Or even further thought: Change is prevented because the person is not taken along in the organization.

Successful transformations of working environments

The Fraunhofer Institute has also dealt with this topic and recently published its report on the study „Transformation of Work Environments“. According to the study, key success factors for successful change are

– Holistic Transformation – even beyond Departmental Borders

– Speed of implementation – don’t put anything off for the long haul

– A transformational corporate management – a role model from above

– Participation of the company – both in its own position and in the company as a whole

It is important to understand that digitalization of processes and reorganization of the organization alone are no guarantee for a successful change in the company but must always be accompanied by an effective transformation management. Not only processes and structures have to be optimized and adapted to changing conditions, but also the values, cultures and rituals of the individual actors have to be considered.

ADCONIA GmbH has already accompanied companies in the transformation process in the past, coached CPOs in day-to-day business or supported them in taking up new positions with our 100-day program. Thus, we have an enormous wealth of experience in what constitutes a successful reorganization in the company. We would be pleased to advise and accompany you as well.


Oliver Kreienbrink

Managing Director, ADCONIA GmbH (Oberhausen)

Jessica  Murawski

Consultant, ADCONIA GmbH (Oberhausen)