According to the latest study “Future Industry 2023”, most companies have not lost sight of their strategic compass despite all the frenzy of the crisis. Digitalization as an example: 59 percent of industrial facilities are continuing with their digitalization projects unchanged. Almost every second company has even initiated new projects. The bulk of the industry also remains on track when it comes to sustainability. A mere 18 percent has reduced their pace in their efforts towards a green transformation. For the study, the Staufen business consultancy surveyed more than 400 industrial companies from the German-speaking region of Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
“The unstable market conditions of the past few years have forced industrial companies over and over again to make short-term changes. Yet, despite the frenzy of the crisis, many companies have consciously seized the opportunity to undergo transformation and have consistently aligned their strategy to the four top issues of digitalization, efficiency, sustainability, and resilience”, tells us Wilhelm Goschy, CEO of Staufen AG. In response to the question of which two top issues they are currently dealing with in particular, six of ten companies reported efficient value creation and digitalization. In four out of ten companies, sustainability and resilient networks are currently at the very top of their agenda. “No company can afford to ignore these four challenges anymore”, Goschy continues. “The success or failure of any transformation, however, depends on the order in which it is implemented and the interplay between the various dimensions. An efficient and digitalized value creation is more or less the foundation that everything else is built upon.”
Operational Excellence as the basis for successful digitalization
Most industrial companies see it the same way: In the latest study, more than half of the companies reported that they would continue their digitalization projects unchanged despite how challenging times are right now, mainly to increase efficiency (86 percent), bring more transparency to their processes (75 percent) and reduce costs (57 percent). “But without Operational Excellence, there is a risk that waste becomes “digitalized” and that as such, the potential of digitalization is not leveraged, or only partially”, warns Staufen CEO Goschy.
Current topics such as the Supply Chain Act or the need to prepare a sustainability report force companies at times to act quickly, despite the fact that a stable foundation might still be lacking. If this is the case, the Staufen expert advises to look closely to determine what is important and what can wait a bit longer. “Compliance with legal requirements does not automatically mean that a company is already really sustainable or resilient,” says Wilhelm Goschy. This is why it is so critical that companies set priorities. Though individual issues such as legal requirements must be implemented, essential basic tasks should not be overlooked in the process. “If every department is busy working on one project or another and the long-term plan goes under in the process, only costs are incurred and no efficiency gains are made,” says the CEO with conviction.
About the “Future Industry 2023” study
For this study, the Staufen AG business consultancy surveyed a total of 401 companies in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland on the topics digitalization, efficient value creation, sustainability and resilient networks. The survey was conducted in February 2023.
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