In this section you can learn and improve your understanding of the link between digital technologies and productivity from actual technology adoption experiences that are featured in these learning documents, videos and success stories.
You will see real examples of Canadian companies going through the technology adoption process. Some of these important steps include: identifying areas for productivity improvement; and assessing methods, technologies and operational changes on how to implement and integrate the new systems. As you will see, the journey doesn't end there, as training and ongoing continuous improvement plans are essential to ensure the best possible results for your technology investment.
The Digital Technology Adoption Pilot Program (DTAPP) was created as a three-year pilot program to deliver support from November 2011 to March 31, 2014. DTAPP funding is no longer available. For help finding other available innovation resources and support programs, please visit the Concierge Service website.
As a result of hundreds of digital technology adoption projects across the country, NRC-IRAP has created learning documents to improve Canadian small- and medium-sized enterprises' (SMEs) knowledge and understanding of the link between adopting digital technologies and improvements in productivity.
See the complete list of learning documents available
Whitepaper: Pre-empting Resistance and Paving the Way
Effective change communications can yield a profound return. Organizational innovation can pose significant change management challenges for SMEs. A major risk is that if technology-driven change is not managed effectively, employees will not use the new information technology as intended or adapt successfully to the new work practices associated with it. One key aspect of successful change management is effective communication about change across the organization. This white paper outlines a strategy with five essential processes that SMEs can harness to most effectively manage technology-driven change and derive the maximum possible value from innovation.
Case Study: Digital technology: The waterfall effect of productivity improvements
The benefits of digital technology adoption reach beyond productivity improvements. They spill over into virtually every aspect of a company’s operation, and can serve as life-savers when small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) find themselves in deep water. Aquatic Informatics, a global leader in the hydrological monitoring industry, is a case in point. After successfully adopting digital technology for a first stage in process improvements, the company quickly realized that this cascaded into much broader advancements. These include higher productivity in customer relationship management (CRM), adding new products faster by leveraging an improved software licensing engine, and expanding the use of marketing tools.
Research Report: Adopting Digital Technologies - The Path for SMEs, published by The Conference Board of Canada
The adoption of technologies that serve to facilitate and automate business processes significantly improves a company's productivity, and therefore its competitiveness and future success. Achieving greater productivity helps firms to grow their businesses.
This Research Report published by the Conference Board of Canada presents selected technology adoption best practices identified through consultation with SME representatives. This report is intended to add valuable information to the dialogue in order to aid decision-makers and encourage other SMEs to explore the potential productivity gains from appropriate technology adoption.
Case Study: College innovation centre opens doors for SME digital technology adoption
The Centre for Innovation in Manufacturing (CIM) at Alberta's Red Deer College provides digital technology solutions, consultation, problem-solving and networking opportunities to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the province of Alberta and beyond. This case study shows how support from the Digital Technology Adoption Pilot Program (DTAPP) delivered by the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP) allowed RDC to identify a number of SMEs needing assistance with digital technology adoption, and help them innovate and generate efficiencies that speeded them toward greater profits.
Case Study: Moulding a productive future with digital technology
This case study shows how a manufacturing firm introduced digital technology such as a barcode system and a digital dashboard on the shop floor and integrated them into their enterprise resource planning (ERP) system. It demonstrates how this technology led to substantial improvements in the firm's efficiency, productivity, shipping, production and operations. It also sheds light on how the company successfully managed these dramatic changes to ensure employee buy-in and satisfaction.
Case Study: Helping SMEs choose the best digital technologies to facilitate their growth
The Centre de productique intégrée du Québec (CPIQ) carried out over 150 commissions in 18 months for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) as part of the Digital Technology Adoption Pilot Program (DTAPP) under the National Research Council's Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP). According to CPIQ, successful implementation of digital technology requires sound analysis of needs, strong leadership by management and both a medium-term and a long-term business vision
Case Study: Building college capacity to support SME digital technology adoption
Selkirk College in the West Kootenay region of British Columbia is the only resource of its kind in the area. Its specialties are digital technology and geospatial research—two assets that can offer immense benefits to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the area. This case study shows how the Digital Technology Adoption Pilot Program (DTAPP) delivered by the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP) helped diversify the businesses with which the college works. With DTAPP's support, the college established a methodology, infrastructure and track record for helping SMEs improve their productivity and competitiveness.
Case Study: ERP propagates growth for builder of plant research chambers
This case study tracks the journey and success of a small Canadian manufacturer that selected an oversized enterprise resource planning (ERP) system for global growth. While the choice was the right one and the system solved many problems, its size and complexity posed new challenges. After three years, the company needed to fine-tune the ERP system, and asked for support from the Digital Technology Adoption Pilot Program (DTAPP) delivered by the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP).
Case Study: Helping SMEs plug into digital technology expertise at local colleges
The Centre for Applied Research and Innovation (CARI) at Georgian College in Barrie, Ontario provides small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the region with technology resources that are critical to their survival and growth. The college helps local industries address their digital technology needs through its curriculum, consulting expertise and access to laboratory facilities. With support provided by the Digital Technology Adoption Pilot Program (DTAPP) delivered by the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP), the centre has not only been able to increase its existing capacities for helping SMEs, but also add new services.
Case Study: International Institute of Logistics of Montreal (IILM)
The International Institute of Logistics of Montreal (IILM) supports small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Quebec interested in optimizing their logistics operations. The DV Hardwoods and Ruchers D.J.-F. Inc. cases illustrate how IILM has tailored its services, within the context of the Digital Technology Adoption Pilot Program (DTAPP), to provide solutions to very different problems in forestry and agri-food production.
Case Study: Building a digital backbone with ERP
This case study illustrates the journey of a small Canadian enterprise in moving from traditional systems to digital technology. It shows how holistic adoption of digital technology through a world-class enterprise resource planning (ERP) system is essential to meeting a company's needs for productivity, production, shipping, customer service, order entry, accounting and operations. As a communications backbone, the ERP system allows the firm to custom-build superior customer tools.
Whitepaper: Productivity into profits: A guide to digital technology adoption for SME productivity leaders
Succeeding in a highly competitive global economy can be a challenge for Canadian SMEs. Studies show that adopting digital technology boosts competitiveness and profitability by improving enterprise productivity and that compared with other countries, Canadian SMEs are slow to adopt such digital technologies. This white paper presents an internationally recognized and proven process to help enterprises embrace digital technology with confidence.
Look and listen to these short videos featuring Canadian SMEs sharing their knowledge and experience relating to digital technology adoption.