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Digitisation, Digitalisation and Digital Transformation, don’t get confused in the hype 

Business digitalisation is set to become the next big thing. But in the hype, it is important not to get confused when talking about digital transformation, digitisation, and digitalisation as they all have very different meanings. In the following, we explain these three terms and the value business digitalisation can bring. 


Digitisation is very simple; it is essentially the process of taking analogue data and turning it into digital data. The simplest example of this is the conversion of handwritten notes to typed text. 


Digitalisation then refers to leveraging this digitised data along with digital technologies to enable businesses to change and improve a business model, providing new revenues and value-producing opportunities.  

An example of digitalisation is the conversion and automation of the manufacturing process using technology. In many manufacturing industries, digital technologies have replaced manual workflows delivering much greater efficiency. Where men and women used to make cars by hand the process is now done by machines. Making the process more streamlined, error-free and quicker. 

Thanks to digitalisation and digitisation, data has become easier to access across many platforms, devices, and interfaces. Digital transformation is the process of devising new business applications that integrate all the digitised data and digitalised applications. The best example of this is Netflix and Blockbusters.  

Once upon a time customers would go into Blockbusters, buy a DVD and play it on their TV at home. Netflix has taken this idea, digitised the movie and digitalised the shop/platform thus creating a digital transformation. 

The Value of Business Digitalisation 

A study by the Association of Small & Medium Enterprises (ASME) and Microsoft Singapore found that on average digitalisation could help businesses raise revenue by an average of 26% and reduce costs by an average of 22%. Although the study highlights the very obvious monetary value of digitalisation there is further value created in these areas: 

Engaging Customers 

A growing portion of customers are becoming digitally savvy and naturally, businesses with an online presence have the upper hand of targeting these customers. However, digitalisation goes far beyond having a website and a social presence. The brilliance of digitalisation is within the data it collects. Digitalisation helps to generate a much deeper understanding and insight into a business’s customers. With this information marketing can become much more targeted. Businesses can then effectively select their target customers based on many different factors. 

Digitalisation involves putting the customer at the heart of the business. One of the great advantages of this is through the use of social media businesses can collect customer insights that help to improve satisfaction, deliver quicker solutions and ultimately improve the customer/user’s experience. 

Optimising Processes 

Digitisation goes hand in hand with data management, data is knowledge and knowledge leads to better decision making. As previously discussed digitalisation brings the customer and the business much closer together allowing businesses to make better decisions based on improved customer insights. Some businesses have taken this further and utilised Big Data to help influence business decisions. 

Time is finite, working productively and efficiently is key. When implemented correctly digitalisation can improve decision making and digital technologies can vastly increase productivity as seen in manufacturing industries. It is important to work fast but also work smart, digitalisation can help this. 

Empowering Employees 

Digitalisation has allowed for new communication channels within businesses. This can help to improve internal communications and again ensure the business is working efficiently. Digitalisation can not only change how we work but also the way we work. Cloud technologies and digital platforms have paved the way for new employment options, such as flexible working hours and working from home. Creating a new flexible working environment helps to improve employee retention and decrease job turnover. 

Find out more about digitalisation  

Our experts, along with a guest speaker from SurveyMonkey, will be hosting a webinar so you can learn how to improve your customer experience through Digital Transformation techniques. Sign up now!  

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