Major enterprises are steering digital initiatives to drive growth and operational efficiency. But which strategies are good digital transformation examples?
As more and more successful initiatives emerge, the trend towards digital innovation is gaining traction. Today, IDC estimates that 40% of all business spending will embark on digital transformation projects – with spending reaching as much as $2 trillion by this year. Major businesses are widening the gap between organizations with slower digital adoption, generating even larger gross margins, increased earnings, and greater net income. For instance, technologically mature organizations report a 55% average gross margin over three-years, compared to just 37% from those who lag behind. In this article, we discuss seven exciting digital transformation examples that will encourage any business to invest in innovation.
Inspiring digital transformation examples
Today, it is critical that businesses embrace digital transformation; after all, consumer expectations will only rise in line with technological advancement. Furthermore, by next year, it is estimated that 25 billion objects globally will have an internet connection. The imperative is simple; either companies go digital or fail – and organizations that do not keep step with the competition will inevitably perish.
The common feature of the digital transformation examples below is an agile workforce that is ready to adapt and upskill. Digital transformation is often disruptive, but the training does not have to be; management should first take steps to transform their workforce, then their organization. With industry-specific certifications that help team members master skills for the digital age, companies can mitigate the impact of significant organizational change. So – without further introduction – below is a selection of excellent digital transformation examples.
1. Porsche: Is driving digital?
Porsche has extended digital transformation to all sections of its operation, taking in every department and team member. As opposed to tasking one team with implementing the initiative, they endeavor to involve every part of the company hierarchy. An important aspect of the car manufacturer’s digital transformation project is expanding automation. One prototype is Car Connect, which does everything from analyzing navigation services and real-time traffic reports to reading out news and choosing music. All these capabilities are controlled via a smartphone. To measure the success of the product, Porsche has created unique user IDs for every customer to collect their experiences and feedback, as well as monitoring product performance.
2. Pitney Bowes: Transforming personalization
Global technology company Pitney Bowes is using a digital transformation strategy to personalize customer experiences. For instance, the company has implemented a digital self-service tool with interactive video tutorial, and a mobile-first policy – all of which focus on improving customer experience. After all, positive experiences lead to deeper engagement and return custom. Further to this, this strategy allows the organization to collect data that enables them to build yet more detailed customer profiles.
3. Disney: Acquisitions that jump-start digital transformation
In light of the recent trend towards video streaming services, Disney has accrued some major acquisitions that aim to advance digital transformation. First off, Disney purchased BAMTech to acquire streaming technology rather than building it in-house. Next, Disney spent $52.4 billion on assets from 21st Century Fox, including some the most famous characters from Marvel comics. This maneuver allowed them to connect with consumers directly, as opposed to through distributors or advertisers. Positive consumer responses to Disney’s digital transformation prove that the entertainment giant made a series of intelligent moves to remain relevant in the changing industry landscape.
4. Rockwell: Bridging enterprise and experience with automation
Rockwell Automation is a global leader in the automation industry. Recently, they have applied the principles of digital transformation to the development of ‘The Connected Enterprise’. This policy aims to bring together people, technology, and systems to integrate the digital and physical worlds. For example, their systems execute demand-based judgments and reduces data congestion to streamline operations and decisions. Data is essential to the success of any digital transformation initiative – and when the proliferation of data is taken into account, there is no reason to not leverage this incredible resource.
5. GE: 3D printed airplane turbine parts
GE is already using the latest 3D printing technologies to produce 19 different airplane turbine parts. There are numerous advantages of 3D printing, but GE’s approach is arguably one of the most interesting digital transformation examples in the industry. This is because 3D printing dramatically reduces the cost of transportation and storage. Due to the project’s early success, GE plans $ 3.5 billion in this project by next year.
6. DHL: Supply chain management with smart glasses
Although DHL’s stock management and supply chain is already highly automated and user-friendly, customers and employees alike still need to use pen and paper and manual scanners to ensure the service runs smoothly. After developing applications for smart glasses with Ricoh and Ubimax, they have managed to automate a larger proportion of the collection and delivery processes. These digital glasses read bar codes, deliver information, streamline pick up and drop off, and mitigate the chance of errors.
7. Caterpillar: Real-time defect prediction
Caterpillar heavy machinery is famous for its reliability. Now, the company’s tractors and cranes now have a feature that will make their machines even more durable, saving owners both time and money. In collaboration with the data analysis startup Uptake, Caterpillar has developed a tool that captures machine performance data to predict the most timely moment for preventive maintenance. Through this strategy, equipment owners can preempt technical failures before any problems occur, drastically decreasing downtime.
The era of digital transformation
Today, technology has permeated every aspect of life; from smartphones to automated border control gates, technology is transforming services and products everywhere. As such, we are living through an era of digital transformation. In our homes and our workplaces, across industries and government agencies, technology drives significant shifts in professional, public, and domestic spaces. The world is digital and enterprises must embrace these shifts – exactly as the companies discussed have done. After all, an approach centered on digital transformation embraces customers’ expectations, striving to continually meet their needs, today and in the long-term.