Digital transformation is an investment to future-proof your business
During a recent Business Day Focus 4.0 dialogue, industry experts said enabling the transformation agenda took good leadership, effective collaboration and time
Digital transformation has unleashed a new journey for organisations to explore. This hyperconnected world, where information is the commodity, allows organisations to adopt disruptive technologies and create opportunities to leverage these technologies across all aspects of their business.
The recent Business Day Focus 4.0 Dialogue, in partnership with Johannesburg Business School (JBS), Eiffel Corp, Veeam® Software and Snapplify, put the spotlight on digital transformation as an investment for the future of your business to optimise efficiency and profitability.
JBS had a firm focus on digital transformation, said Prof Arnesh Telukdarie, the business and research chair at JBS. The business school has long been focused on the SME sector. He said many of the same constraints that applied to larger organisations — a skills shortage, for example — also applied to smaller businesses when it came to digital transformation.
However, smaller enterprises were also constrained by limited finances while many had a degree of apprehension about what a digital transformation entailed.
Industries that have digitally transformed have found a big market available to them, said Chris Norton, regional director for Africa at Veeam Software, a leader in backup, recovery and data management solutions that deliver modern data protection.
The challenge is that the back-end technology infrastructure cannot be built as quickly as the front end. He pointed out that all companies were now required to have initiatives to protect their customers’ data, irrespective of where it resided.
Like most organisations, learning institutions are also under pressure to create digital platforms. It took time, energy and good leadership to successfully enable a digital transformation agenda, said Myles Thies, director of digital learning services at Eiffel Corp, an EdTech partner specialising in modern learning solutions for African contexts.
To be successful, organisations needed to have a clear idea of what they wanted to achieve, the available budget to achieve it, the time frame in which they wanted to achieve it and who would be involved.
When it came to digital transformation, collaboration was key to sparking and accelerating the innovation that needed to happen, said Wesley Lynch, CEO of Snapplify, an educational technology company working with thousands of institutions and partners with other education players to provide technology that facilitates their business growth.
He said businesses had a big role to play in putting their heads together to solve real-world problems and that digital transformation was closely tied to providing integrated solutions that were localised and accessible.
Watch the full discussion below: