Digital Transformation for Small and Medium Businesses

How can small and medium businesses meet increasing pressures—creating innovative products that cost less and get to market first—without adding resources? With digital transformation, even the smallest organizations can leverage technology to level the playing field with large enterprises.

Digital transformation isn’t just an industry buzzword—small and medium businesses across the globe are putting technology to work to support their business processes, improve the methodology of innovation and provide greater value to their customers.

What is Digital Transformation? Learn More »

A recent IDC survey of small and medium businesses shows that almost half agree that digital transformation will be essential to their company’s survival in the next 3-5 years. And many are already well underway in their transformative journey:


are budgeting for digital transformation


have begun the process of digital transformation


say technology levels the playing field vs. larger corporations


say digital transformation has helped free up resources and allowed business growth


IDC Brief - The Opportunity for SMB Manufacturers


Read the IDC study:

Digital Transformation in Product Design and Development: The Opportunity for SMB Manufacturers

This IDC InfoBrief examines the current and future investment plans of small and medium businesses (SMBs) so that firms can see where an adjustment in their investment plans for product design and development might be appropriate.

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Industry 4.0

Digital initiatives are all a part of what is being called the next industrial revolution, also referred to as Industry 4.0, which enables greater business agility and profitability. Over 60% of midsize manufacturers (500 – 3,000 employees) either have or plan to have a smart, connected Industry 4.0 initiative in the coming year, according to IDC.

What does this mean for you? Manufacturers need to educate themselves and take action, or risk being left behind. But you don’t need to get fully “connected” overnight – the key is to get started on your digital journey. Digitalization of your product development process – from concept through delivery – will allow your company to move faster, achieve greater flexibility, and exploit new market opportunities.

Research indicates that digitalization helps small to midsize manufacturers gain a competitive edge by

  • enabling greater collaboration both internally and externally
  • increasing productivity in product design and development
  • improving the ability to respond more quickly to changing market demands

Most importantly, it gives you a chance to get ahead – and keeps you from getting left behind.

What technologies can you leverage?

How can small and medium businesses take the first steps towards digital transformation?

More Productive Concept Design

Generative design capabilities add machine intelligence to concept design. Define constraints, and the software automatically computes geometric solutions.

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Access design projects from anywhere, with solutions that range from mobile viewing to full 3D design sessions and touch-based design interaction.

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Cloud Computing/Software as-a-Service (SaaS)

Quickly share your data across design resources and with suppliers and customers, without being weighed down by hardware or IT support intensive platforms.

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3D Printing

From prototypes to final products, 3D printing allows speed and agility for testing, customer review and feedback, and visualization.

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See how Solid Edge enables Digital Transformation

Solid Edge brings Digital Transformation to small and medium businesses by giving you access to the latest next generation tools in a flexible, affordable way. Take a test drive and see for yourself.

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Improve Collaboration: Free Cloud-Based Portal

Get free online CAD management, viewing, and collaboration, including browser-based access for viewing and markup and secure, controlled sharing. Share almost any file type with your shop floor, customers or partners.

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Craig Hall - Digital Transformation

From the beginning, we knew generative would save us weight and give a unique look to the part and separate itself from parts we’ve made in the past.

Craig Hall, Owner and Designer, Hall Designs

Are you driving disruption or is disruption driving you?
How are digital trends like generative design, additive manufacturing, and reverse engineering changing the way engineers develop and manufacture products? Learn how to make these opportunities work for you to solve real-world problems today, accelerate your product design and create innovations in your market.

Watch the Dan Staples Keynote at Develop3D Live!

Digital Transformation: Opportunities for Small and Midsize Manufacturers
Learn how technology adds value to each of the stages of product development – through concept, design, manufacturing, production and end of life. How does the virtual representation of the product — or digital twin — improve outcomes at each stage? And what resources can companies take advantage of to help them in their transformation journey?

Watch the full episode now (22 minutes 46 seconds)

Digital Transformation in Product Design and Development
While digital transformation is touted as the new trend for product development and manufacturing organizations, small and medium firms can sometimes feel left behind. How can smaller companies reap the benefits of digital transformation, without exposing themselves to too much risk? How do you know if your efforts are ahead of the curve, or lagging?

Watch the video and download the IDC InfoBrief!