10 myths surrounding the digitization of the sheet metal sector

Numerous myths have sprung up around digitization, and today we will be dismantling some of the more common ones.

1. Digitization destroys jobs. Not only is the human factor still required in decision-making in those companies that have already digitized, as this process may also lead to the creation of new jobs. Digitization enables the staff in an organization to focus instead on tasks that add greater value.

2. Digitization is a passing fad. The digitization process that has evolved over recent decades suggests that its spread to fields that have thus far continued to depend on manual labour is unstoppable, irrespective of the sector involved. Thanks to our own experience, we know that digitization is essential for adapting to the changing environments in which businesses now have to compete.

3. Digitization requires a huge investment that is only within reach for a few. Thanks to systems in the cloud and usage-based licencing fees, digitization is becoming increasingly affordable for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), as systems are scalable, so changeover processes can be undertaken gradually, striking a balance between needs and the resources available.

4. Companies that fail to digitize will disappear. Digitization paves the way for dynamic decision-making and allows adapting to each scenario in ever-changing markets. It helps to improve a given business’s capabilities, but this does not mean it is the only way to survive in the future.

5. Digitization means losing my differential features. Companies need a partner in this process, one with a profound understanding not only of the tools and processes required for implementing digitization, but also of each sector’s idiosyncrasies. digitization will therefore be introduced in those ambits in which it truly makes a difference, ignoring those areas in which it adds little or nothing.

6. Digitization is not important in industrial sectors. Digitizing industry means democratising concepts that have thus far been reserved for only a few, such as an agile and rapid response to customers, which is essential in a world in which we are all aware that change is now a constant factor, and will continue to be.

7. Digitization slows production processes. That may be the feeling in some cases. Nevertheless, digitizing a sheet metal plant’s production provides such advantages as the control of timings and bottlenecks, or the ability to know what is happening in real time, making decisions based on hard data rather than gut reactions.

8. Those companies that do not digitize will not survive. Digitization is a multiplying force. It enables companies to be more dynamic and adapt quickly to changes taking place in their environments. Digitization enables SMEs to access markets that they thought were reserved for the few. Yet this does not mean that companies without digitization tools will necessarily cease to be competitive.

9. Digitization reduces creativity. Digitization releases people from processes that are often tedious and repetitive, enabling them to focus on tasks that create more value, whereby it may in fact boost the creativity of teams.

10. Success in a digitization process requires an all-or-nothing approach. The logical thing is to understand a given sector’s idiosyncrasies in order to decide upon the stages in which the digitization process is to take place. Furthermore, this process does not end once these tools have been adopted, as both their own and the business’s evolution will require updates, modifications, and new tools for adapting to demand in each case.

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