An article by Maximilian Ahrens, Senior Vice President T Digital.
After the pandemic, SMEs are now increasingly approaching their digitalization projects with strategic considerations in mind. This is what KfW found out in its latest SME digitalization report (German only). Sounds good at first. But KfW took a closer look in its study and discovered a growing gap between the pioneers and the laggards.
So that opportunities do not remain unused
This may surprise you, because digitalization is still unchallenged as a key driver of innovation, competitiveness and growth. And, moreover, it strengthens the resilience of companies, which can better arm themselves digitally against crises such as pandemics or supply bottlenecks. As soon as digitalization optimizes operational processes, its advantages are obvious. But companies are wasting the potential of digitalization if they rely solely on a solid IT infrastructure and connectivity. Our customers are increasingly looking at adaptations at the application and data level: for example, they want to become more sustainable with our support and are using enterprise platforms that record and analyze CO 2 emissions across the company via an app. Or, like, REMONDIS and Rhenus are relying on IoT. Together with the Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics and the customers, we have developed networked fill level sensors with which the two waste disposal specialists have equipped their bottle banks and data protection containers. The result: The companies no longer empty according to fixed cycles, but only when the garbage cans are full. The perfected collection service saves fuel and improves the CO2 balance sheet.
In order to support small and medium-sized enterprises even more actively in their digital transformation in the future, we have established the new T Digital unit for Deutsche Telekom's B2B area. Telekom Security, T IoT and Telekom MMS have come together under this strategic umbrella since January 2023, while retaining their entrepreneurial independence. This means we are moving closer together, networking expertise and creating transparency. We want to think about digitalization in an even more holistic way with and for our customers; we want to "make it simple. Our approach could be summed up more succinctly by Aristotle: "The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
T Digital expands platform offerings
We want to provide comprehensive support for companies, especially SMEs, in their digitalization projects and provide them with suitable all-round digital solutions. The focus: Security, cloud and IoT. Telekom MMS has long accompanied its customers' digitalization journeys and rounds off the T Digital portfolio with this expertise. Our teams understand how to implement digital platform services in such a way that companies can offer their customers the optimal digital experience in the future. So we don't just provide our customers with scalable, standardized and secure technologies and services such as IoT or SASE. We also guarantee that we always keep our customers' needs in mind when implementing them.
Further strengthening successful SME business
The new unit consistently addresses Telekom's customers and its Security, IoT and MMS units and puts together a portfolio of digitalization services for our customers that are grouped around our core connectivity business. We assume end-to-end responsibility for our platform services - from consulting to implementation and operation. And because Telekom Security is on board, T Digital stands for reliable and secure services.
T Digital's digitalization portfolio already satisfies the essential digitalization needs of our customers. But we are staying tuned and continuously developing our offering - always in line with market requirements and at the cutting edge of technological development.