What is the digital age of Romanian companies?

What is the digital age of Romanian companies?

This month was launched the Barometer Digitalization in Romanian companies 2020. In its third edition, the study conducted by Valoria is a useful comparative investigation of the evolution of the digitalization level of Romanian companies both with previous editions and with global trends. The study gives the opportunity to Romanian companies to express their point of view on digitalization initiatives and their future plans in this regard. Thus, 5 categories of maturity of Romanian companies are outlined in terms of digitalization:

  1. Traditionalist companies – Have inadequate technologies that lead to limited use of digital data. Compared to the 2018 edition of the study when there were 23% such companies, in 2020 there are 21%.
  2. Start-up companies –  Have started to implement digital technologies and / or develop a strategy for digital transformation. Compared to the 2018 edition of the study when there were 37% such companies, in 2020 there are 31%.
  3. Minimalist companies –  Have created an adequate technological infrastructure, have a strategic direction for digital transformation, and have implemented some digital solutions. Compared to the 2018 edition of the study when there were 24% such companies, in 2020 there are 30%.
  4. Advanced companies – Have adequate technological infrastructure, a digital transformation strategy and digital technologies for the entire company. Compared to the 2018 edition of the study when there were 9% such companies, in 2020 there are 10%.
  5. Leading companies –  Have integrated digital technologies throughout the company and have achieved substantial improvements following the digital transformation. Compared to the 2018 edition of the study when there were 7% such companies, in 2020 there are 8%.

Although the values are different from one edition to another and from one level of maturity to another, the most significant is the decrease of 6% of the start-up companies that are moving upwards on the level of minimalist companies. Even if not major, it is progress that shows a general trend of Romanian companies to adopt digital solutions.

There are two categories of factors that influence the digitalization of companies

Internal factors are synthesized mainly by the exchange of generations both at the staff level but especially at the management level and the more diverse external factors. Regarding the external factors, the data from the Valoria study are very interesting, as they are presented in comparison with those that are observed worldwide.

Regarding the external factors, we find that for 39% of the companies worldwide and 37% of the Romanian companies the new business models determine the digitalization of the companies and that for 45% of the companies worldwide and 34% for those in Romania the new technologies determine also the digitization of companies. Seemingly Romanian companies do not innovate much in the business model compared to those in the world.

The study further reveals that the digitization of competitors determines the digitalization of companies for 39% of companies worldwide compared to 42% for those in Romania. Romanian companies are more careful to ensure their competitive level. Customer expectations are an external factor that determines the digitalization of companies for 43% of companies worldwide and 29% of companies in Romania. The difference explains the better focus of companies worldwide on customers compared to those in Romania.

Also, disruptive competitors from other industries are an external factor that determines the digitalization for 25% of companies worldwide and 17% for those in Romania. Romanian companies are digitalizing because their competitors are doing the same, but they are not paying attention to the potential of the solutions adopted by disruptive competitors in other industries. They have the reflexes of thought and action given by the patterns of their industry. And, finally, the pressure from partners and suppliers is an external factor that determines the digitalization for 19% of companies worldwide and 12% for companies in Romania.

Based on the above data, if we were to give Romanian companies a „digital age”, I think puberty would be the most appropriate. That is, a stage of accelerated process transformation, in which they define their identity online and make their choices about who they want to be. Increasingly marked by technology and claimed by digital employees and customers, the present belongs to companies that are maturing into digitalization.

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