Outdoor shops and companies are exposed to permanent price competition. Again and again, one hears of businesses that have to file for insolvency. Something must have gone wrong there, because other representatives of the industry have survived. In most cases, it is digitalisation that is to blame. Or rather, it is a lack of it. We show why it is now almost said: digitalise your work processes or you will soon have to close your business. Here are the facts.
Digitization – what does it mean?
Digitization is about ensuring that as many activities as possible in the company are done with the help of computers and technology. In addition, the goal is that stocks and movements of resources are mapped electronically at all times. So that it is always known where most of the money is spent. Here are some examples:
If you scan incoming invoices, you no longer need to go around the house with it and have everyone sign it. Instead, a scan of it can circulate, with those responsible just ticking it off on their PC. In addition, the data can be transferred straight to the accounting and inventory management departments.
With the help of labels and coding, companies can easily keep track of a highly complex warehouse. Incoming goods are recorded by scanner, outgoing goods are recorded by scanner. This way, everyone always knows where things are and how much of them is in stock.
You see what I mean: all business processes should be digitally recorded. And ideally, all data should be collected in one central place. Usually, ERP software based on a database is used for this purpose. This can be bought from manufacturers as standard software. Alternatively, individual programmes can be created.
However, digitalisation in its highest form should go even further. This is what the concept of Industry 4.0 aims at. It will be the time when machines of one company communicate with the warehouse management of the suppliers. The flow of resources is to be automated as far as possible.
How to optimise the company?
Of course, small companies are not that far off. It is much more important to provide and apply the basic concept behind it. It is about increasing efficiency to the maximum and never stopping. This is made possible with an analysis of which activities the most time is spent on. Then solutions are sought on how to digitally shorten such processes. Once this is done, we look again to see where there is still room for improvement. And then again and again and again.
For this, it is essential for companies to stay on the ball. It is important to keep an eye on the market for innovations. Faster solutions can only be found if someone knows which digital tools are currently available for this purpose.