An interview with Toby Parkins on the importance of Digital Transformation
Toby Parkins is a founding director of Headforwards. As someone who’s been in the sector for such a long time, he knows the extent to which digital can transform businesses. He sees ‘transformation’ as a bigger factor than ‘digital’ and talks about business models being transformed, about the lower costs and increased productivity available, and how sustainability (i.e., long-term viability) is positively affected by digital too.
Why is Digital Transformation important for Cornwall right now?
Being obliged by circumstance and disruption to change can directly lead to innovation. Behaviour-change accelerates among employees as well as customers, which means exciting times for those prepared to be flexible, to adapt and embrace digital possibilities.
How has the tech sector developed in Cornwall?
Of course, the technology sector is national and international; it’s developing everywhere. But Cornwall’s advantage lies both in exceptional funding and grant opportunities, but also in the early rollout of superfast fibre broadband which, compared with elsewhere, has a much higher-density footprint. These advantages benefit both existing Cornish digital businesses, and for those who want to relocate here from elsewhere.
What will the Digital Transformation Space for Cornwall look like?
It’s good to see the Fibre Park idea come to fruition as it’s been a concept long in the making. In spite of video-conferencing’s qualities, it can’t replicate the spontaneity and happy accidents of people meeting up and having unplanned interactions. People will be drawn by the site – not least its excellent food and drink – and by the digital marketplace, which will take the scariness out of investing in hi-tech equipment. You’ll be able to ask, experiment and hear advice, meaning no expensive mistakes, and software and hardware which you know is right for your needs.
A final word from Toby Parkins
The opportunity is there, the technology and know-how are there; business can and will be revolutionised if everything is harnessed and comes together in the right way.