Having analysed and mentored over 150 manufacturing SMEs, the conclusion was that 3% is aware of data analytics, 15% is satisfied with its ERP system and 20% is export oriented. The involved businesses have 73 employees and 4 mio € annual net sales on average. Holistic program was developed, including 150 mentoring (technological, data management, export performance, human resource management, online visibility), 25 foreign study trips with 200 people, online training seminars and 50 million € dedicated public call for the individual development program’s implementation.
Direct conclusion out of the High Growth Company Academy was, that the businesses focus on tools and devices in digitalization, rather than on applications and new business models. It turned out to be essential to assist them in revealing why digitalization is a paradigm shift and not a shop floor technological upgrade.
A regional policy framework was set up – Forum Digital – to commit county and municipality policy makers for better understanding the relevance of attitude change, how it affects the social environment as well, and not just the companies themselves. The final aim is to achieve a holistic change. The memorandum was submitted to both levels, the general assemblies, where there was a full consensus to support it.
In order to operationalize the goals, actions were decided to be taken. First, Pannon Business Network – of the three signing partners of the Forum Digital – implemented customized and individual digitalization training for companies, mid-caps and multinationals. It was followed by orientation, experience-based presentations for students and pupils – 200 of them annually -, to showcase the content and expected skills of the future engineer and economist jobs.
Additional element of the joint implementation is to focus on diversification of the single automotive orientation. The new potential industry is the health sector, where the regional hospital, the local representation of the medical university offers potential for the signing parties of the Forum Digital to attract new knowledge. The direction was established by various health-industry connected research projects (mostly AALs), gradually upgraded towards Central European think tank (digitallife4CE), then expanded to European level of exchange of experience (Intencive).
In order to accommodate the new knowledge in an attractive way, a new infrastructure development was decided by the partners. PBN committed to establish a 1.000 m² of research and training facility, to be finalized by end of 2020. It will offer space for thematic laboratories, manufacturing- and health-related applied researches. It is called ViaNova.
To be able to structure the activities properly and take international good examples, PBN is participating in the Foundation Interreg Europe project. It aims at building economic resilience and added value, entirely in line with the scope of the local partnership.
For further information contact Balázs Barta, director | Pannon Business Network Association, E-mail: [email protected]