February 9, 2023

Chemicals and building materials are arguably the foundation of the business world, making these industries ground zero for digital transformation. Four industry leaders recently met at the SAP International Conference for Chemical substances in Madrid, where they explained why information is most powerful when it’s shared between trusted partners, and how organizations in business networks are usually sparking sustainable innovation.

Joining data forces to create a sustainable world

Doerte Lorenz, senior manager of sustainable procurement at Lyondellbasell , the global chemical company headquartered in The Netherlands, said that her company has long been on a digital journey that has kicked into high gear with deep transparency for renewed business speed.

“Sustainability in order to improve the world and reduce emissions means that we have to share information across our value chain, ” stated Lorenz. “We need big picture insights from the particular entire network. We have to be fast plus agile along with solutions — much faster than in the past. ”

Everyone on the roundtable agreed that electronic transformation was a corporate-wide trek spanning people, processes, and data inside and outside company walls. Lorenz held up sourcing as an example of how digital transformation fundamentally changes company norms.

“Sustainable procurement is all about digitization. We began with SYSTEMS APPLICATIONS AND PRODUCTS Ariba , and it’s a mindset change, ” she said. “We can combine quality emission plus supplier data…putting algorithms behind it to get the particular right reports and pass that on to partners and other organizations…You change the organization to focus on the strategic networks and partnerships with your suppliers. ”

Move past digital buzzwords in order to future-focused mindset

Thomas Meinel, older vice president and head of indirect procurement at Evonik Industries , discussed a three-pronged perspective upon digital change, based on his experiences in IT, company processes, and procurement. Evonik Industries will be a leading specialty chemicals company based in Germany which has moved to SAP S/4HANA. He noted that while electronic transformation has been the buzzword for a number of years, people have to be open-minded to make the most of technology advances that can profoundly change how business operates.

“We might begin by talking about transforming our own organization based on digital technologies, but…you don’t know exactly where you’ll end up as you gain new information, ” mentioned Meinel. “Collaboration between people is even more important to use technology so [people have] the mindset, skills, plus culture in order to implement transformation…you also have to establish a culture where everyone believes that everything might modify in the particular future. ”

Circular economy depends on inclusive platform

Daniel Pereira, director of digital corporate technologies, sustainability, and circular in Eastman , talked about his organization’s transformation programs that included products and services development, R& D, operations, customer relationship management, and sustainability. Eastman is a global specialty materials company based in the US. Commenting on the particular reality that smaller businesses may still rely on paper-based systems, Pereira emphasized the importance associated with welcoming companies of all sizes into collaborative networks.

“At Eastman we exist to improve lives in a material and electronic way… simplifying and automating processes…so employees get home on time in order to be with their families, ” he said. “We’re looking at digital to enable our circular platform…for traceability and transparency…Even in a digital globe, there are still the lot of players that will aren’t digitized. With a collaborative, affordable system that everyone in the string can easily use, we’ll enable the circular economy. ”

Marketplaces speed up collaboration in a hyperconnected world

Carlos Augusto Mantilla Espinosa, IT director from Cemex , a multinational building components company based in Mexico, said that his organization’s digital transformation was well underway. Cemex has aggressive goals to reduce CO2 emissions, and is exploring alternate fuels like solar energy, production materials, and supply chain strategies with a variety of companions in different sectors.

“Cement is usually a conservative business, but we’re doing well…moving into smart operations, ” stated Espinosa. “We are transforming the client experience, procedures, and back office support services with regard to employees regarding greater empowerment. With the ability to connect data plus people, we can address supply chain and other disruptions. ”

Digital transformation spells continuous progress

Stefan Krauss, senior vice chief executive of discrete and power industries with SAP , said that will technology has sufficiently advanced with cloud-based platforms and innovations like AI plus blockchain in order to make company networks collaborative hubs associated with invention. He cited the particular Catena-X Automotive Network for example of exactly how organizations in industry-specific value chains are securely exchanging information between companies, often crossing traditional market boundaries.

“There are usually chemical, metal along with other companies in that network. It’s not limited to one industry, ” he mentioned. “We discuss sharing data in a secure and controlled way so everybody can use the data in the right way. ”

Making digital modification a catalyst for innovation takes much more than just bringing in new technologies. The particular next decades of development won’t end up being contained inside the IT department or any one company alone, regardless of size and long held industry borders. Automation is the particular first step in the journey exactly where no one can predict the results, and success is predicated on improvement that never ends.

Learn more about just how mill products and mining companies are digitally changing: download the Futurum survey results.

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