Organizations globally prioritize digital transformation (DX) to enhance their processes, products, and experiences. According to the International Data Corporation (IDC), worldwide DX spending is projected to reach nearly $3.9 trillion by 2027, with a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16.1%.
Integrio is a leading software consulting company creating progressive technology solutions for aviation, manufacturing, real estate, transportation, digital marketing, and other industries. Dealing with artificial intelligence and cloud solutions, we have gained considerable experience in the digital transformation of companies. In this article, we want to discuss the main trends and steps for their implementation.
Main Trends in Digital Transformation for Mid-Sized Enterprises
Today, businesses face irreversible changes. From no-code efficiency to automation and hybrid workforce, these innovations reshape work and technology interaction. Leaders and IT professionals must grasp these top 13 digital transformation trends to stay ahead:
1. Focus on Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
Artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies transform how businesses operate and interact with their customers:
AI and ML automate repetitive and time-consuming tasks so your employees can focus on more strategic and creative work aspects.
By analyzing large data sets, companies identify patterns and trends and make data-driven decisions.
Big data analytics is also helpful for creating targeted marketing campaigns and product recommendations.
Handle routine customer queries with AI-powered chatbots. Let your human agents focus on more complex issues, improving customer service.
Through AI-driven insights, businesses quickly adapt and optimize their sales strategy based on market dynamics and customer behavior.
As a result, mid-sized businesses get better sales performance, lower labor costs, and revenue growth. Inner operations become more efficient, and customers are more satisfied.
2. IoT Revolution
The Internet of Things (IoT) changes how devices communicate, share data, and operate within interconnected networks. It involves embedding sensors, actuators, and connectivity into various objects, enabling them to collect and exchange data.
Let's overview the most common use cases:
Mid-sized companies can deploy IoT sensors to monitor inventory levels in real time. They efficiently track stocks, reducing the risk of deficit or overstock situations.
Smart sensors provide insights into energy consumption patterns, allowing businesses to identify areas for improvements and cost savings.
With IoT-enabled sensors on machinery and equipment, you can anticipate potential issues, schedule maintenance, and minimize downtime.
IoT provides insights into vehicle location, fuel consumption, and maintenance needs for companies with a fleet of vehicles.
Smart shelves, beacons, and connected displays gather data on customer preferences and behavior, improving in-store experiences.
Connected sensors on production lines collect data on product quality, allowing for immediate adjustments.
3. Leveraging Blockchain for Business Efficiency
Blockchain is a decentralized and distributed digital ledger technology that securely records and verifies transactions. It consists of a chain of blocks, each containing a timestamped list of transactions linked together through cryptographic hashes.
Here are the key principles of blockchain:
Blockchain operates on a decentralized network, removing the need for intermediaries and establishing trust among participants.
Once data is recorded, it cannot be altered or deleted. This reduces the risk of fraud and unauthorized changes.
Blockchain is the underlying technology for cryptocurrencies. You can use them as an alternative payment method.
Mid-sized companies can leverage blockchain for streamlined, transparent supply chain management and secure, cost-efficient financial transactions.
4. More Accessible Development with Low-Code & No-Code Tools
Low-code and no-code platforms enable individuals with limited or no programming knowledge to develop software. Their users may include business analysts and subject matter experts.
And this is why mid-sized businesses use a low-code approach:
Low- and no-code platforms offer a faster development cycle than traditional coding methods. That means reduced time-to-market and thus competitive advantage.
By minimizing the need for extensive coding expertise, these platforms reduce the costs of hiring specialized dedicated developers.
More people involved in app building fosters innovation at various levels within the company.
Low- and no-code platforms help develop self-service portals, e-commerce platforms, or mobile apps. Creating interactive dashboards and reports also becomes more accessible. Chatbots and virtual assistants don't require extensive coding but can improve response times and automated routine interactions.
5. Software Modernization
Modernized applications are designed to overcome the limitations of traditional legacy solutions:
Enterprises update and modify systems to meet changing business requirements.
Modernized solutions are more secure, as they can receive regular updates with the latest security patches and features.
These apps are more efficient to maintain, reducing the overall costs associated with software upkeep. That means you can allocate resources more strategically.
Companies modernizing their software resort to the following strategies:
Moving applications to the cloud to lower infrastructure expenses and facilitate remote access.
Breaking down monolithic applications into smaller, independent microservices for better scalability and quick deployment.
Using containerization platforms like Docker for efficient deployment across various environments.
Integrating with other systems and services through well-defined APIs.
Overhauling outdated systems, upgrading programming languages, and adopting modern frameworks.
Mid-sized enterprises can benefit significantly by adopting customer-centric approaches:
Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) unify customer data from various sources into a centralized view. A comprehensive understanding of customer behaviors, preferences, and interactions enables personalized marketing.
Regularly collecting feedback through surveys and forms helps understand customer satisfaction and identify improvement areas.
Social media listening allows businesses to promptly address issues and engage with customers on the platforms they use most.
A seamless omnichannel experience consistency enhances customer satisfaction and builds brand loyalty. Consider responsive designs to provide optimal UX across various devices.
Loyalty programs, such as discounts, promotions, and special offers, boost repeat sales and reward loyal customers.
Don't forget about post-purchase engagement. Ask clients about their experience through follow-up emails, surveys, or automated communication. Offer assistance or provide additional resources related to the client's purchase.
Ensure that frontline employees are trained to provide excellent customer service. It's vital to integrate customer experience technologies like chatbots and CRM systems.
7. Increased Attention to Data Security
Cybercriminals often target vulnerabilities in security to gain unauthorized access to sensitive information. At the same time, non-compliance with GDPR, HIPAA, and other regulations may result in heavy fines and penalties.
With the increasing prevalence of hybrid work, where employees work both in-office and remotely, unauthorized sharing, phishing scams, and cyber-attacks have become more sophisticated.
We recommend using the following cybersecurity strategies:
Keeping software up to date. Regular updates often include patches and fixes that address known security issues.
Implementing tools for monitoring unauthorized access attempts, unusual traffic patterns, or any anomalies in the network.
Deploying security measures such as firewalls, intrusion detection systems (IDS), and data encryption.
Educating employees about cybersecurity best practices like recognizing phishing attempts and creating strong passwords.
Implementing access control measures and identity management systems so only authorized individuals can access sensitive data.
Developing and regularly testing an incident response plan.
Conducting security audits and assessments.
Collaborating with cybersecurity experts or outsourcing companies.
8. Reliance on Cloud Solutions
Mid-sized enterprises are leveraging the cloud for various reasons, allowing them to:
Save money on hardware, software, and maintenance with the pay-as-you-go model.
Respond quickly to changes in demand due to a scalable and elastic infrastructure.
Protect data and applications with security features like encryption, identity management, and compliance certifications.
Innovate faster using machine learning services, analytics tools, etc.
But how can mid-sized companies embrace the cloud? First, you may design and develop new applications optimized for the cloud environment. Another option is to employ SaaS solutions or move on-premises infrastructure to IaaS providers like AWS, Azure, or GCP.
9. Streamlining Operations with Automation
Automation has become a key driver in digital transformation, offering numerous benefits for mid-sized enterprises:
Streamlined business processes by automating repetitive and rule-based tasks.
Reduced need for manual labor and lower related expenses.
Improved employee productivity by allowing them to focus on more complex and value-added tasks.
Better team satisfaction by allocating time to more engaging and intellectually challenging work.
Companies utilize Robotic Process Automation (RPA) to automate rule-based tasks like data entry, report generation, invoice processing, etc. Chatbots and virtual assistants optimize customer interactions, providing 24/7 support. Also, you can automate marketing campaigns, lead management, and forecasting.
10. Growing Popularity of Everything as a Service (XaaS)
Everything as a Service (XaaS) is a broad term encompassing various services delivered over the internet as cloud-based offerings. Its key components include the following:
Software as a Service (SaaS). It is the most well-known model, where software is delivered over the Internet on a subscription basis.
Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). Businesses use virtual machines, storage, and networking resources pay-as-you-go.
Platform as a Service (PaaS). PaaS provides a complete development environment for building, deploying, and managing.
Security as a Service (SECaaS). A company delivers security services such as antivirus, firewall, and intrusion detection over the cloud.
Data as a Service (DaaS). DaaS can include data storage, processing, and analytics services.
Communication as a Service (CaaS). Provides communication services like voice, video, and messaging over the internet.
XaaS is particularly beneficial in a globalized and remote working environment. Also, such solutions have faster deployment times compared to traditional on-premises. Moreover, by outsourcing non-core functions to XaaS providers, you can focus more on your core competencies and strategic initiatives.
Today, healthcare, finance, and manufacturing are adopting tailored XaaS solutions to address their unique challenges.
11. Widening Adoption of Hybrid Workforce Model
The hybrid model allows employees to choose the most suitable location for their work, whether at home, in the office, or a combination of both. Its success relies on implementing communication and project management tools, cloud-based applications, and secure connectivity.
Let's discuss the benefits of the hybrid workforce model:
The hybrid model aims to enhance productivity, as employees work in environments that suit their needs, reducing commute times and improving work-life balance.
It is great for talent acquisition and retention. Organizations can tap into a broader talent pool and accommodate diverse work preferences.
Businesses gain operational flexibility, quickly adapting to changing circumstances like public health concerns, market shifts, or unforeseen disruptions.
12. Embracing Total Experience (TX)
Total Experience (TX) is a holistic approach encompassing the entire spectrum of experiences within an organization, including customer and employee ones, as well as other stakeholder interactions.
Organizations recognize that the experiences of customers and employees are interconnected. A positive employee experience often contributes to better customer experiences and vice versa.
Ongoing technology innovation, including AI, machine learning, and data analytics, is crucial in enhancing the total experience for both clients and employees.
To implement TX practices, you should:
Adopt integrated technology platforms like Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems and Employee Experience platforms.
Leverage data and analytics to gain insights into both customer and employee behaviors.
Break down silos between customer-facing and internal functions, fostering collaboration across departments.
13. Emphasis on Environmental Sustainability
Today, top executives are increasingly recognizing the importance of environmental sustainability. Environmental sustainability is all about integrating green initiatives and eco-friendly practices into the core business strategies and operations.
It includes adopting technologies and processes that minimize environmental impact:
Data analytics allows organizations to identify areas for improvement, such as optimizing energy usage, waste reduction, and supply chain sustainability.
Automation is key in streamlining processes, reducing resource consumption, and minimizing waste.
Internet of Things (IoT) devices enable the collection of real-time data on energy consumption, emissions, and other environmental metrics.
Cloud platforms offer scalability and flexibility, allowing organizations to optimize resource usage.
How to Prepare for the Digital Transformation?
Preparing for implementing trends in digital transformation is crucial for mid-sized enterprises to stay competitive. Here are essential steps you can take:
Assign a team of specialists familiar with your operational processes — or hire appropriate experts and bring them up to date. They will be responsible for planning and initiating the digital transformation.
Assess your current systems, processes, and technologies. Evaluate the organization's digital maturity and readiness for transformation.
Define clear and measurable objectives aligned with overall business goals. Prioritize areas that deliver maximum impact on efficiency and customer experience.
Create a detailed digital transformation plan, highlighting the necessary steps, budget, and timeline.
Invest in technologies that align with your strategy. Consider cloud computing, data analytics, automation, and emerging technologies relevant to your industry.
Provide training programs to upskill employees and enhance digital literacy.
Implement key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure the success of digital initiatives.
Continuously optimize processes based on feedback and changing business needs.
Stay informed about industry regulations and compliance requirements. Ensure that digital initiatives adhere to legal and regulatory standards.
Costs Associated with Digital Transformation
Understanding digital transformation expenses helps organizations develop comprehensive budgeting strategies and effectively allocate resources. Let's overview the most valuable categories:
Hardware and software. Hardware costs involve purchases such as servers, computers, networking equipment, and devices. Software expenses encompass licenses, subscriptions, and development tools. Companies must budget for both initial purchases and ongoing updates or upgrades.
Consulting fees. These expenses occur when you seek external expertise to guide your transformation initiatives. This involves hiring consultants, advisory services, or partnering with specialized firms. Consultants are vital as they contribute valuable insights and help mitigate risks during the transformation process.
Cost of training employees. It encompasses training materials, instructors, online courses, and any associated resources. Investing in employee training is essential to ensure a smooth transition and maximize the effectiveness of implemented technologies.
Downtime costs. Always consider times when systems are being upgraded, employees are adapting to new processes, and normal workflow is temporarily affected. Downtime costs can lead to a loss of productivity, revenue, and customer satisfaction. It is crucial to minimize and effectively manage downtime.
Also, you should be aware of the following:
Expenses related to change management initiatives, communication, and employee engagement.
Costs for implementing robust cybersecurity measures to protect digital assets.
Budget for addressing any legal implications related to digital transformation.
Costs related to creating awareness and promoting the benefits of digital transformation.
Create Digital Transformation Trends For Your Business with Integrio
Digital transformation is not just a technological shift but a strategic imperative that unlocks many benefits for businesses. It allows companies to increase efficiency, agility, customer satisfaction, and growth opportunities. An important step to transformation is hiring a reliable partner for software or web development.
Integrio has over 200 successful cases of building advanced solutions from scratch and modernizing legacy ones. Our experts are skilled in artificial intelligence and machine learning, cloud migration, and integrating platforms with other services. Also, we adhere to the Agile approach, which helps us transform companies gradually and quickly respond to changes.
Are you ready for the digital transformation of your mid-sized enterprise? Contact us to discuss project details.
Digital transformation is the strategic integration of digital technologies to fundamentally change how businesses operate and deliver extra value to customers. It involves leveraging innovative solutions, such as artificial intelligence, cloud computing, data analytics, automation, etc.
Transforming your business is essential for staying competitive. Leverage technology to enhance operational efficiency, reach a broader audience, and deliver personalized experiences to customers. Digital transformation not only future-proofs your business but also fosters innovation and the ability to swiftly respond to changing market demands.
Start by assessing your current systems and identifying key areas for improvement. Implementing cloud computing, automation, and data analytics technologies significantly impacts efficiency and decision-making. And integrating technologies like AI and IoT can ensure a more agile and competitive organization.
To assess the success of your digital transformation, measure key performance indicators (KPIs) aligned with your goals. They can include improved operational efficiency, customer satisfaction, or revenue growth. Also, conduct regular post-implementation evaluations and seek feedback from employees and customers for valuable insights.