In an era pervaded by technology, going digital is the only way to succeed. Indeed, the International Data Corporation (IDC) reports that global expenditure on technologies that enable digital transformation will surpass US$1.97 trillion (AUD$2.8 trillion) by 2022. And this hasn’t even taken into account the digital acceleration caused by the current pandemic.
Today’s article will explore how digitisation works in some fields and the more prominent tech trends in each one.
The education sector’s main concern is improving the student’s learning experience. When they integrate technology into their programs, it's always for the benefit of the students. For instance, let’s talk about the one platform whose growth was accelerated as a result of this year’s health crisis: online learning. This field covers all the tools that make online learning possible, such as classroom conferencing systems like Google Hangouts and online learning portals like Udemy. The World Economic Forum listed a couple of advantages of online learning, from learning technology-related skills to fostering self-discipline at home. There’s also a continuous rise in other EdTech trends like personalised learning AIs and 3D printing technology to increase student engagement in the classroom.
In its pursuit of digitisation, healthcare aims to improve the patient experience. In the World Health Organization's digital health strategy for 2025, it emphasises the importance of people-centred health systems. The steps the industry is planning to take include but are not limited to: appropriating health data ownership, using digital health technologies, implementing online health system processes, and more.
Much like education, healthcare’s digital transformation has been accelerated due to the pandemic. Specifically, this applies to innovations related to telemedicine or remote clinical services. It has three common types: remote patient monitoring (RPM), “store-and-forward,” as well as live telemedicine. RPM technology is used to monitor patient data out of the clinic, such as with the use of wearables. Store-and-forward is also used to monitor patient data remotely, except it's the patient who records and sends the information to their physician.
Finally, live telemedicine simply refers to real-time conversations between doctors and their patients, whether through video or chat. This type of setup allows the patient to be more involved in their diagnoses too.
From the growing market of online shoppers to the ever-increasing customer demand, global trade continually puts pressure on the supply chain. In fact, a study from Global Market Insights highlights that the third-party logistics market alone is estimated to reach US$1.8 trillion (AUD$ 2.6 trillion) by 2026. This has encouraged every part of the supply chain to find ways to make their processes more efficient.
To do this, the industry has turned to centralising its operations and allowing machines to assist with some workloads. For instance, warehouses are built with robots to address the shortage of workers in the area. Digitalisation is also rapidly changing the supply chain's transportation systems, helping companies be much more efficient. Verizon Connect outlines some of the key benefits of a fleet management system, from real-time updates to the promotion of fuel-saving driving habits that give operators greater control over the delivery of items and how much it costs the company. And since fleet management systems can also show the most optimal routes, drivers avoid bottlenecks along the road, also saving on costs.
Retail is arguably the fastest and most well-adopted industry in digital transformation, mainly because their customer base is mostly online. True enough, research listed in our post titled ‘Digitisation and Innovation Key to SME Survival’ found that people have spent 10% to 30% more time online since early March. Separate findings on The Next Web notes that the number of users online has been steadily increasing over the years as well, encouraging retailers to sell their products online.
Another way retailers are meeting their customers online is by promoting their products on different platforms. Ad spaces on websites and promoted posts on social media are examples of this. Due to the size of the industry, there’s a lot of competition. Fortunately, even startups stand a chance as long as they know how to navigate the field and use SEO and other marketing tools to reach their target market.
Digitisation affects every industry differently. Technology is there to improve our lives, so today’s companies must take every opportunity to integrate it into their processes.