Is digitalisation the same as digital transformation? Learn the differences to reduce the business risk of these projects

  • Digital transformation consists in integrating digital technologies in all divisions of a company, while digitalisation applies to particular business opportunities.

  • Implementing changes can be both a great opportunity to gain a competitive advantage as well as a risk – hence the importance of trusted business partners who will help guide you through both digitalisation and total transformation projects.

  • Co-creation solutions render working with business partners easier and are based on collaboration – developing bespoke projects to meet your company’s individual needs.

  • Focusing on sustained digital development facilitates innovation and gives businesses a competitive edge.

Digital transformation versus digitalisation

The two terms are often used interchangeably, which can lead to misunderstandings in practice. The Swiss International Institute for Management Development (IMD) defines digital transformation as a radical organizational change using modern technologies to increase the business efficiency of a company. Following this definition, Cybercom distinguishes between the two terms, and defines digital transformation as the integration of digital technologies and business processes into all company divisions – sales, customer service, production, finance, distribution, etc. Digital transformation is a long and complex process, as opposed to short digitalization projects, which apply to particular business opportunities. Digitalisation allows for new products or services based on digital technologies, as well as existing products, to undergo changes in order to increase their competitiveness. At Cybercom, we focus on helping businesses develop primarily by using digitalisation. Great examples of how such digital implementations can be applied can be found in our portfolio, which includes, for example, a cloud-based solution for medical devices produced by Virtamed, the Smart Helmet we developed with Skanska, or our business counselling services for Husquarna. These are only some of our wide range of successful digitalisation projects.

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Read also ” Cloud operations – the technology supporting medical education in Virtamed simulators”

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Opportunity or risk?

For well-established companies, digital transformation can be an opportunity to get ahead of the competition, as well as a risk that its failed implementation may result in internal turmoil, or that the company loses its market share to the competition if the process is carried out negligently or too slowly. Yet another risk is the appearance of new players coming from the world of startups. It is not without reason that as many as 32% of board members of the largest companies listed on international stock exchanges believe that their profits will fall victim to so-called digital disruption within the next 5 years. The answer to this threat is to seek innovative solutions based on agile digitalisation. Learning from the mistakes of others is essential, which is why we should ensure that this ground-breaking innovation emerges from inside the organisation. To ensure that the process is carried out properly, it is always a good idea to enlist the help of an experienced company which will co-create such solutions as your business partner. At Cybercom, these are the kind of projects we deal in, and we ensure that the partnership between IT teams and the people responsible for product and service development is of the highest quality – after all, this is what a project’s success is primarily based on.

Co-creation solutions

Innovation and the rapid tempo of changes is forcing companies to reach beyond just their own resources to remain competitive. However, working with a partner requires a sound strategy. Co-creation is a product and service design philosophy aimed at designing with people, by people, and for people. At Cybercom, we focus on the help we provide to our clients to enable them to reach their goals, while assuming that both the supplier and the client actively participate in the process. This approach is the reverse version of the model where a client orders a service or purchases a ready-made product. Co-creation results in bespoke solutions which are aimed at delivering the best results. In order to carry out such a process, it is necessary to focus on the goals (and not the means), as well as on activating the client, offering values which match the given company, mutual dialogue and building relations. The question we always ask ourselves when co-creating is not “what does the customer want to do”, but “what can we do together?”. Using this methodology requires both parties to be willing to work together, and that our customers put their trust in us, but the results always make these partnerships worthwhile

Digitalisation as part of sustained development

Successful digitalisation often results in products and services which facilitate following the principles of corporate social responsibility. One of our principles is helping our clients directly incorporate sustainability-related goals into the design phase of new digital solutions. We want to prove to every client that the results of this include not only reducing any negative impact their business may have (by reducing resource or energy use, etc.), but also increasing business growth and obtaining a competitive advantage.

At Cybercom, we believe that our actions and digitalisation projects not only can, but actually should, contribute to achieving the sustainability goals of the 2030 Agenda while helping the client grow their business at the same time. Even though this may not be the primary incentive for the client to carry out such a project, partnership with us often results in additional benefits in this area.

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Read also or Sustainability Report 2017

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So how can we ensure the success of a digitalisation project (understood as seizing business opportunities offered by new technologies) or a digital transformation (when all processes within an organisation are undergoing changes)? If I were to sum up these deliberations using only three short expressions, I would say: a strategic approach, agile delivery with a trusted partner, as well as looking at project goals within the framework of sustainable business.

About the Author: Marcin Siech

Managing Director of Cybercom Poland. For over 20 years, he has been contributing to the dynamic development of the ITC sector in Poland.

Started his career as a programmer, then he served as a project manager, to become the managing director after few years – he was the first director of the department, then COO and finally the managing director at Cybercom Poland.
He joined the company in 2005. Given many years of experience on the market, he could not only observe its dynamic development, with emphasis on the telecommunications, mobile or automotive industry but also was an active participant in it.

Marcin holds an MBA (Towson University) diploma and is a graduate of the Politechnika Łódzka in the field of Information Technology.

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