In order to achieve competitiveness, several areas can be identified, including modern solutions such as Industry 4.0, smart cities, the use of artificial intelligence (AI), process monitoring and data collection through the Internet of Things (IoT), big data processing, the use of blockchain technology, metaverse, etc. What is important for an individual company depends to a large extent on the current technological maturity of the company, on the sector or activity of the company, the size of the company, the size and structure of the partnership network, customer requirements, etc.
Technological solutions can greatly contribute to competitiveness, but it is also necessary to develop or transform business models and other areas.
All sectors are undergoing a minor or major transformation, including: all manufacturers in all industries, services sectors such as tourism, education, health, trade, creative industry, event industry as well as construction, agriculture and others. The public sector is not excluded from the transformation process.
Some important areas of modern business are evident from below.
Technology is becoming one of the key areas where companies catch up with or outtake competition, so technology becomes the central theme of all strategies and projects.
We can no longer avoid interconnectivity, interoperability, interdependence and relationships between data, processes, people, partners in the value chain, and the connection between the physical and digital worlds. Modern solutions are becoming interoperable and connect with external systems, data hubs and complementary partner solutions.
In addition to technological innovation, successful companies are introducing service innovations, social innovations, open innovations and innovative business models. They also pay special attention to intellectual property.
Companies also gain a competitive advantage by developing their own business ecosystems. This will enable them to offer more comprehensive solutions and support to the market compared to other providers of products and services.
In order to obtain European grants, it is also important that companies take into account additional areas in their strategies. What is more or less important for an individual company depends on the sector and other company’s specifics.
The transition of industry to a circular economy is promoted through various programmes where new solutions can be developed and tested within value chains or even at the level of individual regions.
Energy saving, promoting the transition to a low-carbon economy, i.e. the transition to the use of renewable energy sources and the possibility of switching between different energy sources, are the regular themes of innovative projects in all sectors.
The omnipresence through various media and devices, in various forms and through diverse marketing channels, has a very strong impact on the visibility, sales and reputation of companies that introduce the principle of omnipresence into their business strategies and processes.
The introduction of new technologies can bring significantly more benefits if new business models, new diverse strategic partnerships and appropriate management of the entire business ecosystem are introduced in parallel.
Modern Technology for Different Purposes
For a better idea, a few technologies that are not yet in mass use are listed below, but the first examples show great utility in practice. Through the early adoption of such technologies, individual companies gain significant competitive advantages in their business.
Big Data, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (IoT)
All sectors use both external and internal sources of big data in different situations, collect data via the Internet of Things and use artificial intelligence to increase the quality of management decisions.
Blockchain is being introduced into individual phases of processes to reduce risks in business, such as in the identification process, in the phase of verification of the supplier and its compliance with standards, to ensure the traceability of materials and products, in case of demand for decentralised data storage, etc. Often, blockchain is introduced in supply chains, especially in international business, as well as in other innovative solutions.
Augmented and virtual reality
Various sectors introduce solutions supported by augmented and virtual reality at the production stage, training of workers, in sales and presentation of a product or perhaps a tourist destination, to understand the operation of a particular device, etc.
NFT & Metaverse
Although technology is at an early stage of use, the first solutions are on the market and are rapidly expanding from the original creative and game industries into all spheres (e.g. publishing, tourism, real estate markets, sports, fashion, event industry, education, and through the marketing and sales in all sectors).
Robotics are expanding to all industrial and other sectors. Modern solutions combine robotics with digital twins and now also with metaverse, which enables, for example, development, production or other teams to test and simulate early, manage robots, or also carry out training for employees and others.
Recommendations to companies
The successful introduction of modern technological solutions and new business models in the company requires a serious commitment from the company’s management, which is reflected in both strategies and ongoing projects.
It is recommended that companies
This is the first in a series of articles on the topic of new technologies that will follow. We are also preparing a presentation of Web3 projects in order to increase the understanding of new technologies capabilities. There will also be a website dedicated to Purposeful Web3 Projects. In this way, we would like to encourage companies to actively introduce or even (co)create new solutions that modern technologies enable.
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Irena Rezec is an expert with more than 30 years of experience in both the public and private sectors in Slovenia and abroad.
Her great advantage lies in knowing and understanding different domains expertise and sectors, different levels of business in the broader international context, digital solutions and diverse traditional and digital marketing and sales channels. Therefore, all the advantages come into force in areas where a strategic perspective, multidisciplinary skills, collaborative and partnership business models, digital and traditional methods, channels and tools are intertwined.
Her expertise includes:
- diverse marketing and sales channels (including NFTs and Metaverse challenges for marketing, sales or other purposes) and foreign markets entry;
- contemporary digital business solutions insights and reviews (eCommerce, including online shops and marketplaces, B2C, B2B and NFT marketplaces, Metaverse for various purposes, blockchain used in global value chains and for other business purposes, eLearning, eHealth, eTourism, SaaS solutions, software applications reviews and improvement suggestions, platform and ecosystem concepts, etc.);
- business and partnership strategies, collaborative cross-sectoral business models, business ecosystems development;
- funding search;
- holistic business insights and advice.