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Digital transformation vs. digitization

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Digital transformation is a broad concept for the fundamental transformation of companies to a more technology reliant approach for operating business processes, activities, models and competencies. A few means of digital transformation include the use of analytics, mobility, social media and smart embedded devices for improving on traditional techniques and technologies to change customer relations and internal processes.

According to I-Scoop, areas of a business that digital transformation impacts include business activities such as marketing, operations, human resources, administration and customer service; business processes, which includes one or more connected operations, activities and sets designed to achieve a specific business goal, whereby business process management, business process optimization and business process automation come into the picture; business models, from the go-to-market approach and value proposition to the ways it seeks to make money; business ecosystems, including the networks of partners and stakeholders, as well as contextual factors affecting the business such as regulatory or economic priorities and evolutions; and business assets whereby the focus lies on traditional assets but, increasingly, on less “tangible” assets such as information and customers.

I-Scoop also believes that a digital transformation strategy aims to create the capabilities of fully leveraging the possibilities and opportunities of new technologies and their impact faster, better and in more innovative way in the future. A digital transformation process needs a staged approach with a clear roadmap, involving a variety of stakeholders, beyond silos and internal/external limitations.

“Technological evolutions and technologies, ranging from the cloud, Big Data, analytics, artificial intelligence and mobile to the internet of things and more recent emerging technological realities are enablers of digital transformation and causes of digital transformation needs as they impact behavior of consumers or reshape entire industries such as manufacturing. “These technologies are also accelerators of innovation and transformation,” according to an I-Scoop report.

Digitization is used in many contexts and it is very often confused with the term digital transformation. Digitization is creating a digital (bits and bytes) version of analog/physical things such as paper documents, microfilm images, photographs, sounds and more. Through digitization, these analog things are converted into a digital format which then can be used by a computing system for numerous possible reasons.

Digitization is the automation of existing manual and paper-based processes, enabled by the digitization of information; from an analog to a digital format.

Digitization is key for data processing, storage and transmission, because this process allows information of all kinds in all formats to be carried with the same efficiency and also intermingled.  Unlike analog data, which typically suffers some loss of quality each time it is copied or transmitted, digital data can, in theory, be propagated indefinitely with absolutely no degradation. This is why many organizations around the world are using digitization as way of preserving information.

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