Small and less digitally mature industrial companies seeking to adopt digital technologies often encounter various challenges. To better understand the problems faced by companies when digitalising, PPMI has investigated these obstacles in five European industries. The results of this exercise are presented in the Problem Identification report, which is now available!
Prepared as part of a Smart Industrial Remoting study, the Problem Identification report explores digitalisation problems encountered by companies in the agrifood industry in Lithuania, the automotive industry in Hungary, the construction industry in Romania, the retail industry in Poland and the textile industry in Portugal. The report was produced in cooperation with five Digital Innovation Hubs and experts participating in the study. The findings of the report are based on desk research, interviews conducted with company representatives and a dedicated company survey.
For each industry included in the study, we identified up to three main digitalisation problems. These include a lack of accurate and objective tools for digital maturity assessment, difficulties in interacting with external solution providers, and limited feasibility of digitalisation on a small scale among others. Our research shows that several problems are relevant to all industries:
- Firstly, structural issues affect companies’ capacity to digitalise. For example, many companies had to deprioritise digital investments due to economic instability and supply chain shocks caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
- The shortage of skills is considered a significant barrier to digitalisation by all industries included in the study. The shortage was related to a wide range of different skill sets, including the ability to plan and manage digital transformation, monitor and apply for digitalisation and support opportunities, develop solutions, and operate digital technologies.
- Finally, limited awareness about and risk aversion towards the implementation of new technologies on the part of some companies can be a barrier to company digitalisation.
Together with the Gap Analysis report, this report will serve as an important input for later stages of the study. The recommendations produced by this study will inform the work of the European Commission and offer practical advice to companies looking to adopt digital technologies.
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