DIGITAL FUTUREcongress 2019 in Essen – Review

On our Twitter channel we had already sent a small greeting and a positive feedback from the DIGITAL FUTUREcongress on 11/05/2019 in Essen. At this point we would like to look at the event once again.

At three locations in Germany (Munich, Frankfurt, Essen), the event brings together solution providers and German SMEs. Exhibitors, lectures and workshops will give decision-makers from SMEs confronted with the challenges of digitalization a holistic insight into the most relevant and current topics.

The five main topics of the fair

With the following five focal points, the DIGITAL FUTUREcongress is thematically broad-based and highlights the heterogeneous challenges – but also opportunities – of digitization:

  1. online marketing & sales
  2. process optimization & communication
  3. new working environments & FUTUREthinking
  4. cyber security & data security / IT law
  5. digitization & transformation

In some cases, participants were found to have a moderately pronounced technical affinity in the field of digitization, a rather low willingness to change and thus – measured against the available possibilities – a clear need to catch up. This coincides with our experience with digitization in the area of medium-sized procurement organizations. However, we see it rather from the future-oriented perspective of the associated opportunities for considerable increases in efficiency that are still available in large numbers.

Relevant topics for procurement and the supply chain

Overall, the procurement and supply chain management areas were clearly underrepresented from our point of view. However, many presentations offered technical bridges to procurement and supply chain issues in terms of content. For example, one of the presentations on „Process automation in the physical flow of materials using real-time positioning“ was very interesting from a lean and supply chain optimization perspective.

Another lecture by the auditors from Warth & Klein Grant Thornton AG in Düsseldorf dealt with Robotic Process Automation (RPA) („Intelligent Robots in Administrative Processes“). RPA is a very attractive way to realize considerable efficiency potentials at short notice and at low cost by automating frequently recurring, time-consuming and low-value tasks or functions.

Warth & Klein Grant Thornton presented the functionality of a single application in a real-time demo and numerous practical use cases.

As a rule, considerable time and cost advantages can be achieved without having to change the underlying core processes. Depending on the scope of the function, programming may not even be necessary. The user himself is able to guide the applications of specialized providers and to specify action routines.

The procurement organization can thus directly influence and control the implementation scope and speed of these “little helpers”.

Are you ready for a change?

Should you wish to overcome the findings reported above regarding technical affinity, willingness to change and pent-up demand in medium-sized companies, we will be happy to assist you.

We would be happy to find out together with you which sub-processes with a high automation potential are relevant – and above all valuable – for your organization. We will develop an appropriate implementation strategy and find the right solution partner for you. Talk to us!


Tim Rohweder

Partner, ADCONIA GmbH (Oberhausen)