What does digitalization actually mean? What does it mean for us specifically? It has been a “buzzword” on everyone’s lips for years and is often invoked as the savior of a new economy. With many new technologies as drivers, of which it is still not entirely clear today what they are actually capable of achieving in terms of added value. And that is supposed to make us ready for the next decades? But wait. What does the term actually mean that is used so prolifically? In addition, terms with different meanings are used (cf. Unruh & Kiron, 2017)…:

Digitization vs. Digitalization vs. Digital transformation

As Rosenbauer, this change affects us on all three levels shown. At the first level, essential building blocks of digitalization, such as IT software and infrastructure, especially ERP software, have already been replaced for some time and the associated processes have been examined. A large number of digital potentials in all areas have been identified and consistently worked on, the last “paper forms” are thus on their way to being consigned to history. On the second level, we have also been pioneers in the industry for some time with the development of a digital product portfolio with Digital Solutions. Here, it is important to put the wealth of experience gained into the combination of traditional products and digital solutions on the one hand, and on the other to maintain the “agile” momentum in order to pragmatically test the mutual effectiveness and generally think more holistically. As an organization in the community, we are challenged at level three to respond to the changes in a timely manner and to implement people’s interaction with the new opportunities in a beneficial way.

The implementation of the efforts takes place within the framework of a digitalization strategy. This is derived as a functional strategy from the corporate strategy and primarily answers the question of what role digitalization plays in achieving the corporate goals and what contribution it makes to this. Fields of action were defined for this purpose and search fields were derived on which the focus is placed to achieve the strategy. Based on the search horizon defined in the search fields and the internal potentials, a targeted exploration and prioritization of possible digitization projects takes place. Projects that are already underway and those that are planned are regularly modified within the framework of the Digital Roadmap and are thus targeted and traceable. In order to realize the wide range of potentials, a constituent digital team from different departments serves as a central contact and coordination point for the various projects of the Digital Roadmap. Existing structures and resources are utilized and incorporated.

In all of these activities, a Digital Enabler acts as an interface and coordinator to support the implementation of existing in-house digital potential, to make new ones visible and subsequently to enable and accompany the first respective implementation approaches. Thus, they are the contact person for all departments for the creation of digital ideas up to initial concepts. In addition to strategic initiatives, specific digitalization activities are supported and operated in a structured manner by the Digital Enabler portfolio.

Finally, despite all efforts to “convert into turnover,” one should not forget that there must be an actual benefit for the company and the people in it. Digitalization not for the sake of digitalization, but for expediency’s sake.