In Part 2 of our blog series: Digitalization in Petrochemicals, we would like to give you a little more detailed view on online portals in practice.
In the perfect situation as a supplier, you would run your own e-commerce platform and have it linked with your own ERP system in order to efficiently manage customer master data, inventory management, contract management, credit management, the documentation, shipping pricing and conditions, order and shipment tracking, and last but not least the invoicing. This setup would be further connected to an independent online marketplace.
At this point, we would like to share a few quotes:
There is a quote however, which is even more pertinent.
It is not too early to say that the ideal situation described at the top of this blog WILL need a different mindset. Some people find developments in this direction difficult, if not even abstract. Digitalization is a job that belongs on the desk of management. It is the management that needs to concern itself with the opportunities arising from new developments, involving all levels of the organization in this process.
Leadership is about leading, mainly about leading change. While many people like to joke that the only constant in business is change, change has an interesting way of affecting people that can often result in resistance. This resistance can range from fairly subtle, such as avoidance or passive aggressive behavior, all the way to outright defiance, hostility, and sabotage.
You have heard this hundreds of times in your career that change is important to survive and yet most people do not like it. Proper digitalization is a long way away with a longer learning curve than you might expect.
Nevertheless, the above are high-level quotes. Let’s bring this back down-to-earth, to our industry and quote a managing director of the chemicals digital business for a large consulting company that we have been working with:
“It’s not a matter of ‘if’, it’s a matter of ‘when’ [petrochemical companies adopt digitalization to remain competitive in this industry]”
This quote, in particular, is very intriguing to us as we have heard it independently from several senior executives throughout the petrochemical industry.
More to come in the next blog in this blog series...