No matter what industry or nature of a company’s operation, they will always face challenges. From global pandemics to economy collapses, it takes a combination of creativity and resilience to address them successfully. Large scale change initiatives such as digital transformation, have become particularly important to overcome in these past few years. Below are a handful of the barriers/challenges companies and organizations are likely to face:
- Investing in the appropriate technology
- Lacking IT and Process/Production knowledge
- Technical barriers: people’s or team’s dependency of other technologies, security issues and existing infrastructure can cause reluctancy when faced with a new system or process to use going forward.
- Individual barriers: as much as it is known and praised that technology has much less chances of making errors and speeds up many processes, it does cause the underlying worry of jobs being lost as more technology is accepted.
- Organizational barriers: the company/organization can have a strong resistance to change with the aversion to risk or potential loss of profit.
- Environmental barriers: lack of standards and laws might not be permitting digital/technological advancements to be used to their full potential.
So, with these barriers in mind, how should companies/organizations in the manufacturing industry adapt to these barriers?
Firstly, a digital vision must be developed and aligned with. Organizations must decide what they want their digital strategy to be. What value are they wanting to get from adopting these digital changes statistically? Creating a digital strategy helps put a plan into perspective. From there, the following steps can be taken:
- Compare current strategy to the potential digital version.
- Assess current capabilities and the resources required (perhaps a potential partnership to achieve the vision/goal)
- Strategize the feasibility of the operation/proposed initiatives.
- Evaluate the new factors to consider: engagement, transactions, and fulfilment rules/policies.
- Start discussions with managers with stronger knowledge in their field to see how the company can implement these new processes strategies into place and throughout their teams.
These steps act as a strong ‘backbone’ which all companies can adopt and apply to help achieve their goal when applying these digital transformations.
A few companies who have already adopted this have appointed a new role which is Chief Digital Officer (CDO). This shows how dominating the digital world is becoming and the importance of grasping knowledge of its abilities it in order to move forward.
New technological capabilities form the foundation of digital transformation. This starts from people’s skills/resources within the company and progresses to each employer’s mindset towards change.
Even though the individual might not have many struggles grasp a new piece of technology, having an industry adapt to these changes can be much more challenging. That’s why more strategies and plans need to be adopted and discussed across multiple departments and individuals. With the right steps taken, companies can excel with the benefits digital transformation provides.