Digitization, Digitalization and Digital Transformation: where is a difference?

These definitions are related as they characterize inter-linked processes that form a logical sequence. They are similar in sound and spelling. Apparently, this similarity had become the reason that people still confuse their meaning and use incorrectly.

Imagine that someone will say that he wants to digitize his business – that would be incomprehensible and scary, wouldn’t it? There is a ground for associations with science fiction films in which human essence is downloaded to the Internet, and people are transformed into programs. Understanding the meaning of words is important. Therefore today we will tell you what digitization, digitalization, and digital transformation are.

What is meant by digitization?

Digitization – is the creation of digital copies of real objects. The simplest examples are scanning documents, creating screenshots and photographing physical objects: jewelry, decorative elements, furniture, houses, cars.

In so doing, the real-world objects don’t lose their materiality, but you get their digital miniatures. Usually, such actions are carried out for the purpose of further processing and exchange of information between ordinary users or company employees and potential customers.

Probably, you sometimes take screenshots to send them to the system administrator or to publish on the site as illustrations to the articles. They can also be attached to the progress reports or confirm the payment of goods/services.

In this case, a conditionally real object can be considered an image on the monitor at a specific point in time, which you record in the form of a picture. As for documents, they can be saved or destroyed in the process of transition to electronic document circulation. Here everything will depend on legal requirements.

Photos of physical objects can be used to apply effects in the application, create various collages and decorate the room, but this will give us the next definition.

What is digitalization?

Digitalization is the process of taking advantage of electronic files. For example, you can forward them to employees from other offices or to partners or authorities for verification. The second variant is to provide them with access to electronic documents placed in the cloud storage. Documentation may be submitted:

  • financial statements;
  • statistical data;
  • market research results;
  • economic, political and industrial forecasts;
  • prototypes of web projects design;
  • drawings of equipment, furniture, buildings, vehicles;
  • design sketches of various projects;
  • instructions for the use of specific tools.

Nowadays, most of these files are initially created in electronic form, so users “jump over” the digitization stage and go straight to digitalization.

What does involve digital transformation?

Here we go to the most exciting part of our publication and the logical conclusion of the digitalization process. Looks like a transition to a higher level after a sufficient acquaintance with each other. When you entirely become comfortable with modern technologies and appreciate the advantages of using them, you will certainly want to increase the scale of innovations. So, what is the digital transformation?

This term is equated with the modification of individual operations and full-fledged business processes, as well as business models, communication channels and opportunities. This phenomenon differed from the previous two in its globality and underlined systemic nature; after all, the more data you have, the more you seek to systematize them.

That is, this is the moment when digitalization covers most of your business and achieves tight integration with it.

In fact, you can no longer perform operations, communicate with customers and partners, sell, without extracting the necessary information from electronic sources of information or you can, but to a minimal extent. First of all, it will be associated with document flow, as well as sales and purchases via the Internet (especially if you are participating or planning to participate in tenders).

Which difficulties may arise in the process digital transformation?

With a high probability, you will need to update the software on personal and work devices. Yes, it will entail expenses of money and time to choose, install, set up the appropriate programs.

The good news is that you periodically do this to keep up with the times, and the bad are not the main difficulties that you will have to face on your way to a personal and professional upgrade.

These include subtler things, including the need to change one’s own:

  1. Thinking;
  2. Understanding the processes;
  3. Approach to work;
  4. Style of communication;
  5. Habits;
  6. Skills.

And now multiply all this by the number of employees in your company, because for them the digital transformation process will be the same. Consequently, the number of small and large errors will increase in the first months of the application of new technologies. There is a possibility that it is impossible to exchange files between remote employees due to non-simultaneous software configuration in different offices.

In one of the previous publications, we said that robots sometimes do not show sufficient flexibility in changing conditions. Without specifying the parameters, they will incorrectly perform tasks. But we differ from them only in that we “reconfigure” ourselves, although we show a similar tendency to “hang.”

However, human ingenuity and the ability to adapt is of great importance. After a limited adaptation period, we will achieve success in self-development and the use of new technologies. Do not forget that any ideas, programs, and devices were initially invented and created by people. Keep abreast of happening and more often read the latest publications in our blog.