Panel discussion: challenges with moving digitalization forward
I was recently given the opportunity to attend a panel debate on stage at the regional business event Stora näringslivsdagen in Västerås. The topic was rather broad: ‘Digitalization’.
The other participants in the panel debate came from organizations like Automation Region, ATEA, and MittMedia. So, one company that focuses on research and workshops around industry automation, one company that does a lot of different IT-related work and one company that works with media and news. And me representing Enfo which focuses on delivering IT-services around integration, BI and app development. Together we formed a nice mix of perspectives and skills discussing the broad perspectives of the digitalization era that we are in the midst of.
The biggest challenge for digitalization
So, one of the questions we knew we were going to discuss was “What is the biggest challenge with moving digitalization forward today?”. Not a small question! There is so much to choose from! After a while I landed my thoughts in three main areas:
TECHNOLOGY is the part everyone thinks of when it comes to digitalization and that is no surprise. Digitalization IS about technology, but not only technology. Tech is the easy part. It is (mostly) well defined, repeatable and you will get a predictable outcome when you apply technology to a given problem. The hard bit is to keep up with the latest and greatest, especially as a company with many employees and disparate teams working with the technology.
HUMANS are a ‘bit’ harder to handle. We have the ways we are used to performing tasks, we become a bit slow and hesitant when it comes to newer stuff and take a long time to adapt. But, worst of all, we are not consistent! Sometimes new technology is directly grasped by a large group and the change is so quick that it disrupt entire industries!
CHANGE is then something we need to learn to handle. How can we make ourselves learn new ways of working and find strategies that help both individuals, teams, and organizations to embrace the changes? The speed of change is not going to slow down, or if it does, it is going to pick up speed again. You have probably seen the term ‘Citizen’ in different situations. Today, we see more about this. Microsoft Flow is definitely a Citizen-platform that we need to take into consideration. What changes could it bring? And how fast?
My hope is that we can take the foot off the brake and let digitalization roll free for a while now. I know that the leap to let go of the old in favor of something new is a BIG step for many companies. But rest assured, the technology isn’t scary.
Image: From left Joakim Schütt (Enfo), Catarina Berglund (Automation Region), Sarah Collin (Handelskammaren Mälardalen), Mats Sedlacek (ATEA) and Daniel Nordström (VLT, MittMedia).
Feel free to ask me or a fellow human if you need help and use technology to make your business or your life better, easier and more structured!