Can the coronavirus really be the driving force to digitalization? – Results of BPION market research

As an exception, let’s look at it from a different perspective! What are the benefits of the coronavirus situation? We can for sure tell you one: it highlighted many weaknesses of the organizations and catalyzed their swift development, which will function not only as an emergency solution for surviving but impact the organization beneficially on the long term. One of the big, related areas is HR, others are digitalization and automatization. But is a crisis situation really enough to make these changes, or have only long-dusting plans been picked up by decision-makers? Joining a conference call from home and the confident use of the asset is far from digitalization, so there is still a lot of issues to solve.

Now, that life is slowly returning to the old way, company leaders have to decide: they try to continue from where they were 2 months ago, or switch to a sufficiently flexible operating model, which can adapt to both current and future changes in the environment.

The foundations of a constructive new life are likely to be found in a hybrid model that is a combination of two aspects:

  • company culture, which can balance the advantages and difficulties of the home office on the level of HR and able to motivate the organization, keep the efficiency level, and implement innovations.
  • The technology background supporting all of this. We will explain this in more details.

Is the toolbar well prepared?

Technology background has also many aspects.

On the one hand, it is important to have proper IT infrastructure, smooth communication, and data security. Examples include the availability of the right server park or the general benefits of cloud solutions and the use of platforms that enable communication and collaboration.

Beyond communication, the condition for effective work is the proper management of processes. Here we can rely on digitization and process automation solutions that eliminate human mistakes.

And we could realize this in practice lately. How much easier is it to coordinate a company’s operations from home if, for example, we can use an ECMS system to manage payroll document flow or see our financial performance reports in a real-time reporting interface instead of constantly sharing, overwriting, and bugging Excel spreadsheets?

Steps of digital evolution – results of BPION’s research

Although BPiON takes advantage of process automation throughout the organization, we consider ourselves experts in accounting and payroll processes.

Digital evolution can have many steps depending on the technological maturity, needs, and budget of the company. In 2019, we asked corporate decision-makers about the digital toolkits currently in use and their development plans related to these tools.

Based on the answers received to our questionnaire the most common tools are still ETL solutions, i.e. combinations of Excel and other spreadsheet files in the field of accounting and payroll processes. BI (Business Intelligence) technologies are also very popular which are likely used to meet personalized reporting needs, and also various self-service platforms used to receive feedback on HR communication goals are very common.

Given the current situation it worth wondering about the fact that only a few companies mentioned the use of a document management system; the lack of this system could now greatly complicate the efficient operation of companies.

Regarding future development plans, the vast majority of respondents indicated a time interval of 1-3 years, mainly regarding the introduction of DMS / ECMS systems, BI, and RPA solutions.

You can read further details of our 2019 research here, but now, we are curious to what extent these plans have been overridden by the pressure of COVID-19.

Probably in companies that have previously handled the issue of process development and automation, a beneficial acceleration lane has been created, but where they have not felt the need for technology before, managers are still trying to survive the transition period. We consider it particularly important that the new and state-of-the-art technologies mentioned above are not recommended to be introduced with having outdated process structures.

We would like to get a clear picture of the real trends, so now we ask for your help! Fill out our questionnaire to let us get a broader picture of the digital response options to the coronavirus situation! You will of course be informed of the results at firsthand from us.

If you feel that you would like to hear the views of our process development consultants about possible development focus points, please indicate at the end of the questionnaire and we will be at your disposal!


Daniela Zsigmond
MD Romania,

Rafał Nadolny
MD Poland,

Tamás Kovács
MD Hungary,

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