Without a doubt, paper-based businesses are increasingly going digital. Not only is this beneficial to the environment, but organisations can reap benefits such as increased productivity, efficiency, optimise operations and cut costs. However, digitalisation is no longer just a buzzword. These days, companies are under tremendous pressure to go digital in order to survive and stay competitive, no matter how much they try to bury their heads in the sand and resist change. This applies to all industries and sectors, from healthcare to manufacturing, financial series and even education. It’s hard to find a single business today that isn’t affected by digital transformation.
Based on the results of the Asia Digital Transformation Study which was conducted last year, although the majority of Asian business leaders are aware of the urgent need to transform digitally to address the changing business climate, only a third have a full digital transformation strategy in place, while 22% still have very limited or no strategy in place. What this basically means is that the transformation journey for a large percentage of organisations in Asia is still at its infancy.
For many companies, digital transformation doesn’t necessarily mean a complete revamp of the data centre. It could start with the little things, such as converting manual or paper processes to digital. That alone can already provide substantial benefits to the business. We interviewed employees from a few businesses in the Philippines who shared with us how going digital with IBM Notes and Domino, helped streamline their processes, simplify operations and drive efficiency.
The GCF International Christian School (GCF-ICS), for example, used IBM Domino to digitalise their accounting, registration and enrolment processes which used to be done manually and during peak periods would take days to complete. For one major food corporation in the Philippines, meanwhile, IBM Notes allowed it to keep track of all transactions and documents online, instead of having them manually routed from location to location, between numerous users, customers, approvers, etc. For an archipelagic country like the Philippines, which consists of over 7,000 islands, that translates to tremendous savings in terms of cost and time (and not to mention headaches avoided).
Although many of those we talked to commended IBM Notes for its reliable and secure email engine, the solution was built primarily as a groupware (collaboration tool). One common praise that we heard time and again was the simplicity of IBM’s solutions, and the client-server architecture allowed data to be accessed conveniently in various ways (i.e. Notes client, web browser and apps).
What companies need to know is that sooner or later, they have to take the inevitable step towards digitalisation. There’s simply no escaping it. But no matter how you decide to embark on your digital transformation journey, whether you go all out or take it a step at a time, know that at the end of the day, going digital is about engaging customers, empowering employees, optimising operations and transforming products and business models.