We have been living in the digital age for some time now, and it continues to transform how we live and work. Businesses of all sizes understand the opportunities and challenges associated with this fast-paced digital environment and the subject seems to be more in focus than ever.
Small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) face an increased pace of opportunities in the digital transformation, making it a challenge to keep up and take advantage. New technologies bring opportunities for some, but also disrupt existing business models and jobs, requiring stakeholders to either adopt and integrate the new technologies or adapt their business approach.
What are the main roadblocks to SMEs implementing digital transformation?
Covid-19 has caused many small and medium businesses to start using technology for their marketing needs. Although Covid-19 emphasized the importance of digital for business survival and resilience, many small and medium businesses are not using digital solutions. What could be holding those companies back?
- Insufficient resources
The biggest challenge in digital transformation for SMEs is insufficient or even lack of expertise. This is not unexpected. The right infrastructure may be present, but SMEs may not have the skills needed. While many business owners are aware of the technology basics, they may lack the skills and experience necessary to implement digital tools and strategies effectively.
- Resilience to change
Some business owners may resist changing their traditional business practices, even if the new digital methods can improve efficiency and productivity. Equipped with the “ if ain’t broke, don’t fix it” mindset or in some cases bad experiences, many of them give up digital transition simply because they do not understand how it can be incorporated into the business.
- Difficulties integrating new technology
SMEs may struggle to evaluate their needs, how to find IT partners, where to start, what to expect, and how to integrate new digital technologies into their existing systems and processes. Ensuring accessible technical infrastructures is essential for digital SME development.
FIT EDIH project offers support to help Romanian SMEs raise their level of digital maturity
About FIT EDIH (Futures of Innovation Technologies European Digital Innovation Hub)
The idea behind FIT EDIH is to be a one-stop shop for digitalization in Romania’s Center Region. This means the DIH will be the go-to place for small and medium businesses in the region, regardless of their level of digital maturity.
The goals of FIT EDIH are in line with both the needs and characteristics of the Center Region and the goals of the Digital Europe Program. As a primary goal, FIT EDIH focuses on helping low-level maturity SMEs and public administrations in the Center Region access outstanding digital expertise and create the right business environment to foster digital transformation.
The FIT EDIH project also aims to improve its operations and work better with other European innovation and digitization networks. Thus, through the FIT EDIH project, three additional fields will be supported in addition to the field of intelligent production coordinated by ULBS, namely public administration, smart city, and e-health coordination led by project partners from Alba, Mures, Harghita, Covasna, Brasov.
FIT EDIH received funding under the Digital Europe Programme (2021-2027), a new EU funding programme focused on bringing digital technology to businesses, citizens, and public administrations.
ROPARDO – a solid partner for digital transformation
As a committed partner in the FIT EDIH project, ROPARDO is helping SMEs and public administrations in the Center Region of Romania to raise their level of digital maturity. Alongside its partners, two of them from Sibiu, the “Lucian Blaga” University of Sibiu (ULBS) and Smart Factory Association, ROPARDO provides SMEs access to technical expertise and training to support their digital journey.
According to Ciprian Candea, CEO of ROPARDO, “as the technology sector continues to grow, so does the demand for SMEs to equip themselves with the resources they need to make the digital transformation a reality. Digital transformation is no longer a buzzword, so adopting technologies to streamline and automate manual tasks & processes is no longer a choice; it is a necessity. As a partner in the FIT EDIH program, our team is dedicated to facilitating the digital transformation efforts for Romanian organizations”.
In both our personal and professional lives, digital infrastructure and technology are essential. They help us communicate, work, advance in science, and respond to urgent environmental issues.
Given all the factors, challenges, and costs of using technology, it’s important to support Romanian small and medium businesses. They play a big role in making Romania’s cities thrive and should not be overlooked.
ROPARDO is committed to supporting the digital transformation of SMEs and organizations, ensuring that they have access to outstanding digital expertise and training to help them thrive in a digital age.