DIGITALIZATION OF BUSINESSES: What Business Owners Should Know
Businesses are steadily evolving, on all fronts. As the years roll by and the population increase, a lot of things come into play. One of such things is that there will be alternatives to the already-existing services that are being rendered. And with this, naturally comes a sort of competition. The second thing to play out in this reality is that, entities caught up in this inevitable competition, will have to advance or diversify the content of the services they are rendering. To keep up with this, then such entities must resort to creativity, in line with what is obtainable as of then. And within the context of this discourse, digitalization is that element that keeps all commercial entities in this time of population boost, wherein creativity is needed to thrive. This isn’t just particular to individuals across different endeavors, it is very essential for businesses that want to remain relevant, of course with impressive and progressive turnover. It is expected that business owners should have been informed to the extent of being in the know of this.
Digitization and Digitalization
Something is conventionally said to have ‘gone digital’ when the system by which it operates has improved from being mechanical to being in line with recent technological advancements. Nevertheless, two words in this context that have been used interchangeably and wrongly are; digitization and digitalization. Each time these words are used, the person or people using them normally refer to some technological advancement of some sort. Such that is applied in certain activities. But in practical terms, these don’t mean the same thing, even though they may be closely related in meaning. Whichever you are referring to, Haelsot Digital creatively remains at the center, when it comes to the application of the needed expertise.
Digitization refers to the conversion of manual data or processes into digital formats, such as can be easily processed by a computer. In other words, it involves the creation of digital copies of materials such as documents, media files, and other things, or easier assessment by an automated system. A business is said to be digitized, when all the manual processes, which mostly involve the handling of papers, are converted into digital forms or formats.
Meanwhile, digitalization is often mistaken for digitization. Both are often extensions of the other. Digitalization simply refers to the translation of basic processes within an institution, from an analogy format to a more technologically advanced format. These processes involve all forms of communication as well as the various levels of day-to-day business activities.
In other words, digitization involves systems of both interaction and operation, involving mainly the transformation of both processes and data. Whereas digitization involves systems that mostly border on both engagements and records.
Digitalization of Businesses
A business is said to be digitalized when all aspects of that business, as well as the corresponding operations, are transformed and compliant with current practices, so much so that the processes are more efficient. It entails thriving on the benefits of available technological advancements, as it pertains to specific aspects of the business, on a daily or steady basis. For instance; instead of the prevalent practice of work registering daily attendance, by signing in a notebook. Such daily attendance can be taken electronically, by doing all the signings in a computer, programmed for such purpose. With this, it saves the organization the risk of misplacing such records; it also helps them checkmate the activities of the workers too. Also, other information which would have ordinarily been kept in bulky files, packed on shelves, can be saved electronically.
Furthermore, digitalization entails the usage of digital know-how in the management of data, information and all there is to a successful business. This is not entirely dependent on the size of the business or the length of its existence. Haelsoft Digital has over the years proven its competence, in bringing business owners in the know, of how to digitally transform their businesses, regardless of their size, preoccupation, or specialization.
Digital Transformation: This in practical terms, is an extension of the concept of digitalization., though it involves more intricacies and formations. Digital transformation, as the term implies, is the overall modification of the systems and activities upon which a business thrives. Going beyond these, it also involves business strategies as well as the competencies of the workforce, in line with current technologies. Of course, this, in the long run, has noticeable effects on the business operations as well as the overall customer perception.
While digital transformation involves the transformation of a business in its entirety, digitalization is a concept that when rightly applied, gives rise to businesses being operated on a digital scale. Of course, the benefits abound therein.
Before you digitalize your business
a. Make sure you clearly outline what your intentions and objectives are. Outlining and adhering to these goals helps to keep you on track while your business grows.
b. Aside from outlining your objectives and targets to grow your business digitally, you also need to map our time-bound and realistic strategies. This aids in the precision with which you run your business on a digital scale.
c. Having outlined your objectives and mapped out your strategies, you need to gather individuals with the requisite skills and motivation, to bring to fruition, your goal of digitalizing your business.
How to digitalize your business
Having been in the business of helping businesses grow digitally for some years, Haelsoft outlines some of the best ways to upgrade your business.
i. Develop a Digital Marketing Master Plan: This helps your business secure a place in the virtual space.
ii. Enhance Your Search Engine Optimization: Search engine optimization (SEO), is an online asset that broadens your online presence by driving visitors or traffic to your website. Your SEO can be enhanced by; adding backlinks to your articles, putting up quality and unique content, and not forgetting the important place of keyword research. And the resultant effect of an enhanced SEO includes; more sales and increased customer engagement.
iii. Adoption of E-Commerce: Take your product and services online, to gain a wider reach.
iv. Customize Your Business: One of the ways to customize your business is by producing an application for it. This helps rebrand your business, regardless of the type of services you render. This increases customers’ satisfaction, as it encourages easiness with which they do business with you.
Reasons to digitalize your business
At this point, business owners, especially the ones already with the way they are running their businesses and not willing to go the extra mile for a boom, might be asking this question; “What is in this for me?” This is a valid question. It is an indicator o a progressive mind and a precursor to the transformation of some sort.
In the course of our training over the years, we have been able to equip business owners at various levels with the requisite skills, with which to digitally transform their businesses. We do this, partly by bringing them into the know, of the benefits that lie therein. So, below are some of the reasons you should digitalize your business.
1. Digitalizing your business helps to make the work environment less bulky, as relevant information or files would be stored electronically. With this also, you can seamlessly store up more documents, yet your space doesn’t have to look crowded.
2. Not just that you can store up more information, but the security of that information; especially the discreet one, is guaranteed; at least to a very reasonable extent. Unlike the traditional way of doing this which involves documentation in files, which are being kept in corners that are still accessible to folks they are not supposed to. But with the digitized method, you are only worried about securing your site or virtual space, which is less burdensome.
3. Easy retrieval of data: One other benefit of saving documents electronically is that retrieving such information is not tasking. You just need to key in your details, and you have access to whatever information it is you want, regardless of how bulky it is or how long it has existed. And you don’t have to flip through dusty files and papers.
4. Boost the business outlook and customer experience: As earlier stated, digitalizing a business is holistic, as it involves all aspects of the enterprise, including advertisement among other things. Advertisements allow a business to sell itself to the world. This is very important for a business that wants to remain relevant amidst the stiff competition out there. Of course, advertisements are usually more effective for a business outfit with an online presence. And that alone increases the confidence of potential customers. And that confidence is sustained and multiplied when the business is seen to operate on standards in line with the latest technologically advancement.
Also, digitalization involves making the formerly tiring process more convenient for customers. Some of these processes range from making payments to making use of the products and services that the business offers. And with this, customers record a boost in their experiences, thereby giving the business a facelift.
5. Wider reach: Aside from the outfit getting a facelift and its reach is bound to steadily expand, owing to its advanced structure, complemented by an online presence.
6. Enhanced processes: One other thing that comes with digitalizing a business is that the day-to-day processes involved in running that business, are enhanced and improved in every sense of it.
7. Increased productivity: When the daily procedures involved in running a business are improved and enhanced, there is a consequent increase in the productivity level of the business. This isn’t particular to an outfit in active production; it also resonates with all profit-making ventures.
8. Reduced cost and time: With the enhancement of production and reduction of waiting time, coupled with the increase in productivity and efficiency, the organization is sure to cut costs which could have arisen from factors like time wastage, among other factors. Also, money in form of running costs can be saved through the conversion of important business data files or data into digital formats.
9. Flexibility: Once a business is digitalized, the owner is better placed to make adjustments without adversely affecting the growth of the business.