Digital Transformation in Asset-intensive Businesses: Lessons Learned from the Metals and Mining Industry

AbstractDigital transformation shapes business operations across industries. The present study investigates the challenges of this transformation in asset-intensive businesses. Based on a qualitative case study in the metals and mining industry, the study explores the early attempts to implement digital technology-enabled changes in the inter-organizational exchange as part of firms’ business models in their business ecosystems. In particular, the study identifies the challenges related to the ways firms in the metals and mining industry manage to seize the opportunities that digital technologies provide for their business operations. The challenges include firms’ lack of capabilities to change, goal ambiguity, technological constraints and external constraints. The findings contribute to the discussion of digital transformation as a technology-enabled strategic change and provide suggestions for business practitioners about factors that can impede the realization of this transformation. Keyword: digitalization, dynamic capabilities, organizational change, metals, mining


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