How Digital Transformation Enhances Business Resilience
Bakerfield Solutions had a record growth year in 2020. By leveraging state of the art web-technologies, such as Acumatica ERP and Planful FP&A we help businesses understand the many factors driving their operations and what it takes to stay at the top of their game.
Nobody could likely have predicted how, during the past 18 months, companies worldwide would have had their business resilience put to the test—by an invisible virus no less.
There are countless examples of challenges different organizations have faced since early 2020, these are just a few of the most common ones we’ve heard about:
Operating entirely remotely from the office: Companies transformed their on-site workforce to a completely virtual workforce, with varying degrees of success and disruption. Some businesses had to scramble to ensure business continuity while those who had a remote-work structure and culture already in place could adapt more easily.
Increased network loads: With everything shifting to a remote infrastructure, some companies’ networks were going to be pushed to their limits and beyond. Those who were already operating partially or predominantly ‘in the cloud’ were able to quickly pivot much better than those who had not previously embraced cloud technologies.
Growing security concerns: Along with a virtual work environment comes increased opportunities for hackers to exploit weaknesses in companies’ locally based networks, which were not designed to support remote workers. Understanding cybersecurity is critical in a modern work culture and protecting important data, privacy and intellectual property can still be a concern.
Banking, health and personal data has been managed in the cloud for many years. These organizations understand how to provide the utility of cloud-based systems balanced with maintaining the tightest security protocols. Bakerfield Solutions provides best-in-class business management systems leveraging this same technology. If you have not yet adopted the cloud for your business, it’s time to take a fresh look at why it makes sense to do so, now more than at any time in the past.
After 18 months living through a pandemic, we’ve all become a bit wiser. We see that the companies who prioritized digital transformation before the pandemic hit, or in the early stages of the shutdown, were able to adapt, survive, and perhaps even to thrive due to their resiliency.
The Digital Transformation—What does Resilience look like?
There are 4 major ways digital transformation enables businesses to become more resilient.
(1) Processes are streamlined: When there is significant disruption to any organization, one of the first things that needs to be done is to find ways to improve efficiencies and reduce costs. Ask what processes can be automated. Consider what past data and forecasts can be analyzed in new and different ways to drive better strategic decision-making. When a company embraces digital transformation, the ability to make these changes and to take these initiatives is considerably improved.
(2) Data is used more wisely: When there are huge changes in an economy, the market landscape in which firms compete also changes. It is statistically proven that a company which embraces digital transformation and which can mine data effectively sees greater sustained growth and can more readily adapt to be ahead of their competitors. Companies can make use of modern web-based technologies, such as Acumatica ERP and Planful to gain new insights into their customer fulfilment experience, supply chain performance, manufacturing key performance indicators, financial trends and more. Digitalization enables companies to operate cohesively at an enterprise level, affording opportunities for inter-departmental decision making, collaboration and cooperation. After all, data isn’t useful unless it’s automatically and repetitively delivered as actionable information, and put into the hands of the team who can analyze it and use it to create better outcomes for the entire company.
Let’s look at a real-world example:
A purchasing department was aware that significant cost savings were possible by adopting a new purchasing strategy, buying more products to leverage discounts and potentially reducing cost of goods sold. The management team was reluctant to tie up more capital in inventory since sales were reduced; they didn’t understand why, and they had been considering raising prices to sustain profitability. They had considered that additional inventory would mean additional holding costs and this simply didn’t seem like a good strategy. Operating on a legacy ERP solution they had a great many reports from different departments, but were unable to interpret one set of results other than in isolation from other results.
Before implementing Acumatica ERP, the organization was not able to effectively understand the impact the purchasing strategy change would have on reducing lost sales from inventory outages and how they were able to improve customer service, delivering products on a timely basis and ultimately growing sales. They saw significant growth such that they were actually able to reduce prices (rather than increase them) and to grow market share from their competition.
The team at Bakerfield Solutions is proud to deliver results like this to an ever increasing client base. We’d love the opportunity to help you become our next success story.
(3) Flexibility becomes a priority: Perhaps the most important thing we have all learned in the past 18 months is the importance of flexibility and of adaptability. We’ve hopefully realized that we cannot always be in control of everything. Rather we should take control where we are able and that should set us in good stead to accommodate the things over which we don’t have control. It is apparent that for a significant number of businesses a return to work doesn’t mean a return to normal, as we once knew it. A majority of organizations are pursuing a “hybrid” work environment where employees are working on-site and remotely, not either/or. The hybrid work environment presents different challenges for firms as they look to ensure that all employees are switching between on-site and virtual working as seamlessly as possible. This can only be done safely when an organization commits to a full digital transformation, permitting access to critical business systems with the same effectiveness, using the same methods and with the same strong security measures in place no matter where work is undertaken. It is anticipated that businesses that don’t adapt and offer a hybrid work life to employees are likely to see increased staff turnover as people look for a new balance in commute times, time at home and comfort when working.
(4) Companies become future proof: After a complete digital transformation, companies are considerably more future proof. There’s no worry about outdated software or outgrowing systems; a cloud-based system can easily be scaled up as the company grows. New features and functions can be added, and others can be taken away, as needed.
Increased Business Resilience Starts with Smart Digital Transformation
Becoming more resilient is critical for any business. The next major disruption can come at any time. Undergoing digital transformation is your best opportunity to remain resilient when uncertainty abounds.
Although the temptation may be to take a “rip-and-replace” approach, that is to say, rip out your legacy systems and install and fully transition to a modern cloud-based system in one fell swoop, we find that companies who need that approach are the exception rather than the rule.
Digital transformation projects are significant in scope, since the entire organization is impacted and so projects of this kind can fail without proper planning and management from an experienced team. The primary focus is always to keep your business running while building resilience through new digital solutions.
Delivering a Seamless Digital Transformation Experience
Your company can become more resilient through smart digital transformation and Bakerfield Solutions is here to help you through your journey. As an Acumatica partner, Bakerfield Solutions is ready and able to assist you with getting your Acumatica ERP system into place and running smoothly. Acumatica offers ERP software that can be customized to your business, thereby accelerating your return on investment, and decreasing the time spent training employees.