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Compared to other industries, the German chemical industry was relatively late to jump on the digitalization bandwagon, in 2015, to be precise; it has, though, featured high on the agenda ever since. This is the finding of a long-term study conducted by consulting firm Ernst & Young , for which 101 companies were surveyed.

However, there are still gaps between potential and implementation: 69% of companies believe that digitalization can have a significant impact on their sales, but only 26% are already well advanced in digitalization in this area. The figures are similar for customer service (66%:26%) and logistics (63%:24%). Companies are already reaping the benefits of faster turnaround times (47%) and healthier finances: Digitalization has enabled 44% of companies to cut their costs by an average of 12%, and they expect to see even more cost savings in the future. Companies also see great potential for improvement in data analysis (49%), automation (34%), and data management (32%). They cite skills shortages, inadequate technical infrastructures, and security concerns, such as cyberattacks and data leaks, as the biggest barriers to digitalization.