Digital transformation is now an inevitable requirement for enterprises to minimise negative impacts and implement sustainable business development in the digital era.
However, digital transformation in the business community still needs to improve. The awareness and investment activities in this field are still different, causing the digital transformation to face many barriers.
Lê Nguyễn Trường Giang, director of the Digital Transformation Strategy Institute, spoke to Vietnam News Agency about this issue.
How do you evaluate digital transformation in the business community at present?
The biggest obstacle for the business community in digital transformation is that they need a deeper understanding of digital transformation.
They carry out the digital transformation in business in a sentiment manner or under the market trend, but need to follow what the business needs.
That makes the digital transformation not achieve the goals set at the digital transformation plan. Enterprises have not considered digital transformation as a way to transform business for better business performance. They now consider digital transformation as an information technology (IT) project.
Finally, enterprises need to implement digital transformation to have a comprehensive strategy. Based on that overall strategy, they can balance resources, know what to do step by step and how to do it effectively. Many enterprises have only done specific tasks, such as buying software products for the enterprises but have not put the buyer in their overall strategy on digital transformation. Meanwhile, digital transformation requires enterprises to change the whole of their businesses.
What opportunities and challenges do enterprises face during the digital transformation process?
Digital transformation is an inevitable process because the digital revolution changes all aspects of social life, so enterprises must participate in this process.
To carry out the digital transformation in the most convenient manner, the first is to be aware of what digital transformation is. To have favourable conditions for digital transformation, enterprises must understand the real situation of the business, all steps of the digital transformation that the enterprises must do, and the goals of this process.
Based on that, they know what and how they need to do to achieve the goals in digital transformation that they have set. Besides that, they could have suitable digital transformation steps with specific characteristics of their businesses and make reasonable choices during their digital transformation process.
The enterprises still tend to look for the digital transformation models of other businesses and organisations to apply to their businesses. However, there is only one form for some businesses. Each enterprise has its characteristics, so it is necessary to design its digital transformation strategy.
They must start to have efficiency in implementing digital transformation. They must also define a clear roadmap with specific steps and preparation in all resources to overcome difficulties and make progress in the digital transformation.
What is the leading role of large technology corporations for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in this digital transformation process?
Large technology corporations play an important role in the digital transformation of SMEs. The transfer of technology requires a large amount of capital and experiments to conclude whether such technology is effective or not.
For SMEs, the technology transfer with the large investment and the experiments could not deploy. Therefore, testing such new technologies at large technology corporations will assist SMEs in assessing the potential of such technologies.
However, there is also a current problem: many SMEs buy more products and services while carrying out their digital transformation but need to transform management.
I emphasise that digital transformation is the process of changing an enterprise's organisation, corporate restructuring, and choosing the right technology for the business.
SMEs think they will also get good results from using technology products that large corporations are using effectively.
Therefore, large corporations already using that technology try to transfer the technology to SMEs to boost SMEs' business growth. But those products and services exceed the SMEs' ability in terms of investment and human resources to meet the requirements of those products to use them effectively.
That does not improve the SMEs' business performance and makes them have a burden of investment. It makes the business operation process more and more difficult, leading to decreased business efficiency.
How should enterprises do to achieve goals in the digital transformation process?
According to the Digital Transformation Institute, there are six steps that one SME must take in the process of implementing its digital transformation.
First, it needs to redefine its business model and establish the new business model that the digital transformation process creates.
The second is to change the mindset of the business to match the new business model. The third is choosing a suitable management method with the new business model. Finally, the fourth is to set appropriate goals for its digital transformation process.
Based on those steps, the fifth step is to determine the focus in each period following the resources and conditions of the enterprise to achieve that goal.
Finally, the sixth step is to synthesise the above five steps into a strategy to implement the digital transformation process in the business.
What does Việt Nam do to achieve its digital transformation goal in the future?
The digital transformation process of Việt Nam in the coming time has both advantages and disadvantages.
The enterprises know that they need to participate in this digital transformation. However, the difficulty is that they do not have a deep understanding of what digital transformation is.
Another advantage is that the Government's policies create favourable conditions for businesses to implement digital transformation.
However, there are still obstacles to actualising those guidelines and policies for specific businesses.
Besides that, digital transformation requires a qualified management team and employees to carry out this digital transformation process.
However, enterprises do not have a digital workforce to meet the requirements of this process.
One more thing is the problem with data. Việt Nam has a lot of data, but the data for digital transformation is not satisfactory. Therefore, the digital transformation process will not move forward if there is no improvement in building the national database and no database for each enterprise.
The Government's message is that businesses need to accelerate their production and business activities in the digital environment and establish effective digital service channels. So what solutions are needed to support the businesses?
First of all, the Government needs to speed up the training of digital transformation lecturers and professional consultants in terms of digital transformation.
Việt Nam does not have experts in digital transformation, so the consultants are not sure how the digital transformation process is done.
It is also necessary to have training courses for the digital workforce that meets the requirements set by this process.
Moreover, enterprises need to have a dedicated team to take charge of carrying out the digital transformation. This team is very important because even if the businesses know what to do and have qualified workers but do not have this team, they will not achieve goals in the digital transformation strategy. VNS