4 min read
In the first two articles of this Digital Transformation series, you learnt why the digital transformation challenge is keeping many CEOs up at night and why many digital transformation initiatives miss the mark.
In this article, we delve deeper into the shift towards digitalisation, exploring the five stages of the digital maturity journey and how to work out which stage your organisation is at.
Challenges are pushing the mining and minerals industry to prioritise digital transformation
In the face of critical minerals supply questions, challenges from senior management, ESG regulations, unpredictable commodity prices, activist-investors, tightening regulatory environments and sometimes the press, the mining and minerals processing industry must deal with declining and variable ore quality, deeper deposits, experience shortages and increasing stakeholder expectations to deliver a better set of performance metrics.
“Australian mining companies must not only adapt to the disruption of industry from a technical viewpoint, but the disruption being brought about by changing community standards and attitudes towards mining,” says Ian Sanders, mining lead at Deloitte Australia, of the rapidly changing market.
In its ‘Tracking the Trends: The Top 10 Issues Transforming the Future of Mining’ report, Deloitte has pointed out that the need to remain competitive requires operators to:
- push boundaries related to digital transformation,
- attract diverse workforces and
- avoid the capital project mistakes of the past
The need to remain competitive also requires operations to make technology a strategic priority by acknowledging its role as an enabler across every facet of their business.
Digital technology – an easy answer?
It’s a challenging environment but sadly, throwing money and computers at the problem isn’t going to guarantee success.
There’s no denying that there’s a digital revolution underway in the extraction industry — or that digital transformation promises a way forward. Indeed, it is unavoidable if your operation plans to remain competitive. But there are traps and it’s easy to fall into them.
“Understanding where your operation is positioned in its digital maturity journey is the best place to start,” says Dominic Stoll, Solutions Manager at Mipac.
For example, there is no point in applying advanced predictive analytics to data sets that are incomplete or questionable. By understanding your operations’ digital transformation goals, timeframe and budget, it’s possible to develop an actionable roadmap that transitions your operation through the digital maturity journey.
The 5 stages of digital maturity
There are five stages of digital maturity that a mining and minerals processing operation typically progresses through. These are listed in the table below:
But how do you know which stage your operation is at?
We suggest evaluating your enabling infrastructure level. Can you accurately measure, monitor, and adjust the critical few parameters that are key to your operation?
In other words, do you have the right instruments, historians, and control strategies in place?
The automation pyramid
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