Digitalisation – an Opportunity and a Challenge

Digitalisation – an Opportunity and a Challenge
Dr Bernhard Rohleder, Managing Director of Bitkom

The main focus of the International Suppliers Fair (IZB) 2016 will be the special topic of "Mobility Goes Digital". At the trade fair, which will take place from 18th to 20th October, well-known German and international companies will present their products to trade visitors. Companies whose stands are not located in the special exhibition area in Hall 1 will also incorporate the topic, which plays an important role along the entire automotive value chain, into their presentations at the trade fair. By focusing on "Mobility Goes Digital", the team behind the IZB is exploring a highly topical issue.

A survey recently conducted among 556 companies with 20 or more employees on behalf of the German digital association Bitkom underlines the current importance of the topic, revealing that virtually all German companies, namely 96 percent, consider digitalisation to be an opportunity. According to the survey participants, the networking of vehicles will make new mobility concepts possible and create a large number of new business models. The survey was conducted among the managing directors and executive boards of companies in the fields of automotive construction, banking, media, the pharmaceutical industry and tourism. The industries involved in the study represent a sales volume of 550 billion Euros and employ approximately 2.2 million members of staff in total.

An average of 37 percent of the companies in the five economic sectors examined consider themselves to be pioneers where digitalisation is concerned. The majority of companies, however, experience problems when it comes to implementing digitalisation measures. "Companies need to speed up with regard to the digitalisation of their business activities", declared the Managing Director of Bitkom, Dr Bernhard Rohleder (pictured), at the "hub conference" in Berlin on 10th December 2015. "Speed is a very decisive factor in the digital platform economy." He went on to explain that the approach taken by companies when managing the digital transformation of their business activities needs to be both fast and strategic in equal measure. Such an approach would enable existing jobs to be secured and new jobs to be created.

This trend may already reveal itself at the IZB Job Fair, which will take place on the last day of the trade fair (20th October 2016). As a dialogue platform, the Job Fair gives companies, universities and students the opportunity to get to know each other in personal discussions.

photo: A. Müller