The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated a ânew normalâ in the business landscape, compelling businesses to digitally transform if they are to survive.
This was highlighted by WOUâs School of Digital Technology (DiGiT) Senior Lecturer Dr Lee Heng Wei during his online talk today on âDigital Transformation: Your Vaccine in Post Covid-19 Business Environmentâ. The event organised by the Penang Regional Centre in collaboration with DiGiT was attended by some 40 participants.
He shared that over 30,000 companies globally have closed down since March 2020, while many others are struggling. He said the pandemic has hastened the need for businesses to embrace digital transformation.
He said businesses must transform digitally to reach customers in keeping with the growing e-commerce market. He quoted statistics to indicate that in a month, 91% of Malaysians on average searched online for a product or service to buy while 82% bought a product online. He cited the example of small businesses like the nasi lemak stall which are digitally transforming their daily operations by joining food panda.
Dr Lee defined digital transformation as using digital technologies to create new or modify existing business processes, culture and customer experiences to meet changing business and market requirements. âThe main aim of digital transformation is using technology to serve customers better,â he clarified.
He highlighted the four key areas for the digital transformation of business – process transformation, business model transformation, domain transformation and organisational transformation.
âProcess transformation is how you gather data,â he explained. He remarked that every marketing plan nowadays must be data based. âYou collect data from data analytics, SEO, so that you can know which customer searches for which product, and which key word they use. This is vital information for your process where all is data driven.â
He continued, âBusiness model transformation is changing the way you do business, such as getting your business online and selling online as well.â
âDomain transformation is shifting the focus of your business from one area to another more promising sector, such as moving into producing masks or gloves. This requires creative business solution, creative problem solving, and entrepreneur development skills,â Dr Lee added.
In highlighting the organisational transformation of business, he said that this would require agile management and digital human resources management.
He pointed out that employers look for graduates with digital skills and digital experience so that they can help with the digital transformation of the business. He said workers must therefore be able to use online analytical tools, design social media campaign and measure business performance using digital metrics, have basic SEO knowledge, as well as possess experience in digital marketing and in content writing and editing.
Dr Lee highlighted that students can pursue the new Bachelor of Digital Business (Hons) programme (BDBS) at WOU, which enables learners to gain both skills and work experience during their studies.
The graduates of BDBS can work as digital media specialist, digital business analyst, product specialist (digital services), digital marketing executive, business development specialist, and digital content specialist.