Why does digital transformation matter?

Concepts such as cloud computing, artificial intelligence (AI), and the internet of things (IoT) are among the latest developments surrounding digital transformation.

Digital transformation refers to using digital technology to better operate a business and meet customer needs. It really began in earnest when the internet took root three decades ago. Today, most businesses operate in ways that were unthinkable prior to digital transformation.

One hallmark of digital transformation is the determination to incorporate technology into all aspects of a business' operations. In its infancy, this might have meant something as simple as moving from pen-and-paper accounting to using computer spreadsheets. 

With time, the changes have become more sophisticated, including using data analytics to automate operations. Some people make a distinction between "digitization" -- the simple process of converting information to digital form -- and "digitalization," which involves using digital technologies and information to literally transform how a business operates.

Innovation is another major aspect of digital transformation. Those committed to the concept of digital transformation are always looking at new ways to tackle old problems, or imagining how to use technology to create brand-new opportunities.

Concepts such as cloud computing, artificial intelligence (AI), and the internet of things (IoT) are among the latest developments surrounding digital transformation.

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Digital transformation matters because it allows businesses to tap into cutting-edge technologies that help them to keep pace -- and thrive -- in an increasingly competitive marketplace. Digital transformation also helps businesses to speed up their processes and to increase the efficiencies of their operations. With the right technology, businesses become more agile and flexible, making them better able to quickly adjust to the changing needs of their customers. 

While digital transformation might seem to be all about technology, the process goes nowhere without the people who make it happen, and the businesses that fund the technological changes.