Digitization - Right now - or never?

Digitization – Right now – or never?

We are currently experiencing at firsthand how the Corona epidemic is fundamentally changing our business life and that of most of our customers. We ourselves and most of our contacts work from the home office, office buildings are increasingly being orphaned. Instead of getting on a plane or in a car, many conversations are held from home via video conference.

The emergency is now forcing companies to go down paths that they were previously skeptical about. Many a boss still prefers to look over his team’s shoulder all the time instead of giving his employees the freedom to organize themselves independently. And this even though there have already been many good reasons to adapt to the flexibilization of the working world.

Economic revolution in record time

So, we are currently experiencing a paradigm shift in record time. Experts regularly lamented the fact that German companies and institutions have a considerable need to catch up. The pandemic has now achieved what hosts of change management programs have not: Corona makes possible within a few days what was previously unthinkable.

Yesterday’s digitalization pioneers are among today’s winners

In most cases the new form of communication does not even bring disadvantages according to our previous experience. Rather, it leads to more efficient work and contributes to climate protection. Moreover, in the corona pandemic, it is mainly the companies that are pioneers in this area that are weathering the crisis well. This alone shows that the trend towards more digitalization will continue to strengthen in the coming years.

Fast steps towards new working worlds

What we are currently experiencing shows how the digital economy – basically a piece of the digital future – can work. Not everyone will work from home afterwards. And of course, there will be business trips again at some point. However, there is already so much added value today that it will not be so easy to reverse the development that has already taken place.

Companies that have slept through the development so far and still survive the crisis will therefore have to catch up quickly in order to survive in the market.

If not already done: Get started! No matter how, but start!

The path to digitalization can begin on a small scale. For example, by simply starting by compiling a simple list of precisely those problem areas that now prevent decentralized and digital work. And at the same time, invite everyone involved to collect suggestions for solutions to automate precisely these processes.

The solutions do not always have to involve the use of artificial intelligence, block chains or robotic process automation. Even simple steps or support from business partners (e.g. reformatting of provided documents and evaluations) can regularly reduce considerable effort, start digitization and thus make every day work easier.

Expert knowledge helps

Yesterday, today and in the future, people will create and accompany processes and control them with their expert knowledge. 90% of processes are standard. For the remaining 10%, it is necessary to obtain additional information, check specifications or critically question performance descriptions. This is time-consuming and expert knowledge plays an important role. Every company has one or more experts in all departments. These experts will also be needed in the future and should be involved and collected during the digitalization process. After all, the 10% of special processes are important and usually also the ones with the highest added value.

Systematic comparison of your own value-creating fields of action and suitable solutions

Of course, the fields of action can also be systematically illuminated accordingly. After all, the automation and digitalization of inefficient processes does not always bring the desired, great added value for the organization. Often it only becomes apparent after the introduction of the new technology whether the investment in modern technology is worthwhile. It is sometimes extremely difficult to select one’s own relevant fields of activity and the appropriate value-added solutions from the now broad and fragmented range of digital tools – and not least also the most diverse price models – and to determine one’s own development path.

Digital development also influences the development of the organizational structure

In connection with this, there are generally a number of further questions concerning the future strategic orientation, the resulting requirements and the related sustainable capacities. Which tasks will have to be performed in the future and to what extent? How must the team be structured? How does digitization influence the effort and how are the resources to be dimensioned? And how can the employees be taken on this journey? The answers will be highly individual.

However, one thing is certain: The Corona crisis will not end tomorrow, but certainly now is the time for lateral thinking and forward thinking.

Use the time to tackle this issue. We will be happy to help you with this.

Until then: Stay healthy!


Tim Rohweder

Partner, ADCONIA GmbH