14 Oct 2022
The digitalization of a traditional industry is usually a challenge, implying a transformation in the processes using digital technologies resulting in higher degrees of efficiency and, ideally, an increase in revenue. This creates new opportunities for companies, their employees and has the potential to bring new people, with innovative skills to traditional sectors, either by incorporation in existing companies or by entrepreneurship and the creation of new businesses.
Much more than the digitization of the information, the conversion of analog data, documents and processes to digital information, the digitalization implies a change in the business, a transformation on how companies use, process and analyse that information. As an example, there would not be a meaningful change in the process, if all the information is stored in a digital way, but a tool to rapid search that information was not used or a way to filter, select and present the relevant information to a particular individual was not developed.
The traditional sectors, such as the footwear and leather goods industries, are in a process of digital transformation. The digitization of the information is now a common element in the day-to-day business, with tools like CAD for modelling and production, digital technical sheets, with materials inventory and methods for production of models, the digital communications and a fair degree of automation. The challenge presents itself as what to do with all the data, how to use this information to predict future market behaviour, to streamline processes and to increase the capacity to respond to clients in a quicker and reliably way , how to use the data to plan production with higher degree of certainty, how to create tools to diminish errors and increase revenue, improving work conditions and the wellbeing of workers, in sum, how the digitalization can positively impact the business.
Opportunities arise for the attraction of new talents to traditional sectors, provoking an industrial digital transformation and presenting a path for younger generations with a STEAM based education to work in the industrial ecosystem. Skills such as collaborative creation, digital design and modelling, data analysis, software and automation development tools, are essential to this revolution.
The traditional sectors digital transformation can only happen involving the fresh, motivated and skilled younger generations that, in their turn, can find in these sectors a route to apply and develop their tools and at the same time a path to fuel their creativity, natural curiosity and problem-solving abilities.