Technological landscape

Mining your way into a technological landscape

The scale achieved by global companies with the help of technological advancement creates new opportunities to increase production and drive down operational costs

The emerging technological landscape coupled with innovative practices for new business processes is paving the way for the adoption of digitization. There is a dynamic shift in approaches adopted by companies to sustain increasing profitability and a competitive edge. Having thrived during the boom of the 2000s and then survived the global financial crisis of 2008, mining companies are now competing for growth in the next stage of the industry’s development. A wide array of industry participants—diversified global majors, national champions seeking to go global, commodity specialists, and juniors aiming for the big league—are all looking to increase their presence on the global stage.

With the price of commodities standardized by the market, efforts should be made to increase profitability by focusing primarily on maximizing the output from operations and reducing the unit cost of production and transportation of minerals. The quality and nature of ore extract is governed by the cost and techniques used for mining. Business leaders have been constantly working on the companies’ core capabilities suitable for optimizing operations thereby minimizing costs.

While digital technologies offer a gamut of solutions and distinct benefits, employing the most relevant technology that suits the company’s business model is most crucial. From defining the facets of digitization to bringing the concept into reality, both strategically and operationally, there is a need to inculcate digital algorithms into organizational planning. Collaborative practices adopted by multiple stakeholder groups lead to the realization of these achievements.

Adoption of cloud-based solutions like SAP S/4 HANA is critical for the business processes today to simplify and benchmark processes through business processes re-engineering. It will enable companies in cutting down the processing time, reduce the monthly financial period closure, multi-skilling employees, seamless interaction with customers and end to end visibility on the supply chain.

The metal industry aims to improve efficiency, productivity, adaptability and sustainability of the supply chain system and their integration within agile business models and processes. The scale achieved by global companies with the help of technological advancement creates new opportunities to increase production and drive down operational costs. However, the challenge of achieving profitability without losing focus on operational safety and sustainability remains. Digital transformation is the key to ensure an automated experience without comprising on safety in these cases.

Successful digital transformation is not only limited to emergent technology but also governs several other factors that are critical for achieving success. Aligning enterprise goals and organizational strategy with digital intervention, enabling a technology-mediated workforce, ensuring the existence of a well-defined operating model and facilitating the culture of innovation across various teams while communicating clearly defined implementation goals are some of these factors that determine the fate of a successful digital transformation journey.

Intelligent enterprises embrace information technology, process automation technology and communication technology to create value across the supply chain. They also adapt intelligent user-centered design concepts like SAP Fiori 2.0 that focuses on how employees work and provide business benefits catered to the data collected. It helps increase transparency, customer satisfaction, and productivity by ensuring faster and direct access to relevant information.

The real imperative lies in planning and systematic integration resonating with catalyzing innovation. Hence, there is a need for strategic leaders to think outside the box and ensure simplified, streamlined and automated strategic financial processes to bring greater efficiency and transparency to business processes and financial structures.

By Bharat Goenka, CFO, Aluminium & Power, Vedanta Ltd

 

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