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The Importance Of Maintaining Professional Practice In A Digital Economy

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Introduction: The Importance Of Maintaining Professional Practice In A Digital Economy

Digital technology (DT) includes all electronics, automatic systems, technological gadgets, and resources that generate, process, or store information. The distinction between analogue and digital technology is that in analogue technology, data is converted into electric rhythms of compound amplitudes, while in digital equipment; information is converted into a binary system, i.e., zero or one, where every bit is the symbol of two amplitudes. The importance of digital technology in marketing is that you can simply record and analyse the execution and result of your campaigns (Johnson, 2022). Nowadays, organisations use digital technologies to support their businesses. For instance, the use of digital applications such as social media tools, emails, tweets, instant messages, and teams to facilitate meetings. And the integration of these technologies has made it possible to automate the varying business problems and solutions proffered. However, with everything new, there is always a need for employees of that organisation to learn and adapt the acquired training to boost human capital development. The sector I would like to discuss is Co-op supermarkets, since I am aware that digital technologies were utilized during the incidence of COVID-19. Therefore, my role as a digital technologist in Co-op supermarket involves producing a report for the board of directors on the use and uptake of digital technologies during the COVID-19 pandemic and explaining how the needs of frontline workers and other stakeholders were met using DT. In addition, I am expected to write on the evolution of DT, analyze and evaluate DT trends and improvements with impacts on Co-op and with respect to the professional development and career success of employees working at Co-op. Finally, I am expected to discuss the key benefits of ongoing professional development for different stakeholders in co-op supermarkets.

The evolution of digital technologies

Technology is the scientific knowledge used by human beings in their day-to-day lives. Technology is used for various purposes like medicine, communication, and transportation, as well as to access food, socialization, healthcare, and many other things in day-to-day life. Society has digitalized, and these days people use digital methods and technologies in their daily lives. It has a huge impact on all sectors of the economy (Diaz et al., 2021). The digital method of marketing makes a direct connection between the consumer and the seller.

Evolution is the process of changing, where transformation takes place from one form to the next. This system of marketing has brought about changes in the business world. People used the traditional method of business, which people used to get knowledge about any product. Customers got the product through the chain process, as there was a chain in the market between the producer and the customer, so consumers had to pay a large amount for the product. This thing has changed now as, over the past few decades, there has been an increase in the use of mobile internet, technology. The use of technology and the internet then went to the business world, and people started to use this for business purposes as well as marketing, and this resulted in the use of technology in business organizations.

The evolution of digital marketing took a very long period of time. The use of the internet was very limited at the beginning, and people rarely used it, but it has changed with the flow of time. People started using digital methods for a few purposes, and this use of the internet as well as digital methods grew thoroughly. The use of this technology experienced rapid growth during the period of the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic led people to stay at home, so they started using the internet for their own work. Along with that, for safety and hygiene purposes, they also used the technology for marketing.

Figure 1: spending on digital transformation (In trillions US dollars)

The use of digital technologies always shows a positive growth rate. Its use is increasing day by day throughout the world. It was found that there were 0.96 trillion US dollars spent on digital technologies and their transformation in 2017, which kept increasing, and it is expected to reach up to 2.8 trillion US dollars by the year 2025. Hence, it is seen that the evolution of digital technologies shows a positive growth rate.

The impact of digital technologies on work environments

Digital technology has various impacts on every working organization. It always shows increasing spending on the use of this technology. It had an impact on the world economy and, along with that, helped the growth of business organizations (Jafari-Sadeghi et al., 2021). The use of this technology helped people in various ways, such as providing complete details about the product being obtained, terms for getting any product, marketing, and many other things.

  • Payment system: There are different kinds of payment systems used by people. The digital technologies helped the use of online payment through various methods. They get the option of paying offline as well as online, and due to the use of the digital method of payment, people get rid of carrying money, which helps them pay digitally during any emergency.
  • Self-service: This made people self-reliant as they had many options and could choose the products they wanted on their own. The customer is not dependent on the retailer or other mediator of the market system to get any product. They can select their product on their own and buy it when needed. The customers have the option to maintain all the steps of using the technology at the workplace on their own.
  • Home delivery: Customers who use digital technologies for shopping don’t need to visit the market to get the products. They order the product online and get it delivered to their doorstep.
  • Taking orders: This has made it easy to place orders for any products. The process of ordering any product became easier for the customer as well as the seller. The customer searches for the products and then places an order according to their choice. The order of requirements is stored digitally, so the seller doesn’t need to take orders manually, making the process of taking orders easier.

This is because when digital marketers spend their time and money making effective campaigns, they want to see the successful outcomes of those campaigns. It makes it simple for them to record their campaigns, which enables them to become accustomed and determines improved outcomes. Digital transformation makes massive changes all over the world, and so many organizations have benefited from digital technology. One example of the retail business industry. Many businesses have a website and social media accounts to inform and educate customers about their products and services. A lot of them also accompany their brick-and-mortar business model with an eCommerce store to offer customers a more flexible shopping experience. Some innovative enterprises even make use of advanced technology like virtual reality and augmented reality to attract and engage their target groups. Companies also adopt digital technology to increase their profitability.Since one advantage of technology is limitless communication, companies can extend their reach beyond domestic boundaries and access millions of customers worldwide. Finally, digital transformation is not just important but a requirement for all modern businesses, as the majority of firms automate their processes, firms that refuse to make the change will lag behind and lose their competitive advantage.On the other hand, there are various incentives for companies to digitize.For example, production will run faster since machines are replacing humans in repetitive tasks.So, the coordination of corporate data in one system allows everyone to work together more seamlessly.

Digital sector improvements and trends analysis, and how they have been affected by changing work environments

  • Improvement in digital sectors: Digital sectors (DS) have seen massive improvements in the past few years. The growth of the digital sector is seen to be six times greater than the overall growth of the economy across the entire country. This shows that in the past few years, the digital sector has taken some massive strides in contributing to the economy. New figures produced by the government show that the DS contributed approximately £149 billion to the entire economy of the UK in 2018, which accounted for 7.7% of the UK economy (gov.uk, 2020). The total increase was seen to be 7.9% compared to previous years, this meant that the overall economy in the UK increased by 1.4%, which brings about a massive boost to the economy of the UK (gov.uk, 2020). The digital sectors up until 2010 grew gradually along with the economic growth of the country, but from the year 2015, the growth of the DS started to overtake the overall economy of the country, and from there on, the DS was seen to take an upward curve.
  • Trend analysis: The use of the internet is increasing all around the world daily, but it is also observed that there are still a significant number of users who do not use the facilities provided by the internet in the UK. All around the world, the number of internet consumers increased from 413 million in 2000 to about 3.4 billion in 2016. In the UK, 13% of adults were seen not using the facilities of the internet (gov.uk, 2021). The proportion of non-users of the internet was seen to have remained unchanged since 2014 in the UK.

Figure 2: Proportion of non-internet users.

Since the improvement of digital sectors in the market, the provisions provided by the government have improved significantly. Above 84% of the countries all over the world tend to offer at least one online transactional service, where the global average is seen to be 14 (gov.uk, 2021). The UK ranks seventh in the year 2020 by the UN E-Government survey. The number of wearable devices increased; these are devices that have smart sensors and are usually connected to the internet for data exchange. The number of wearable devices is expected to increase to over 1.1 billion in 2022 (gov.uk, 2021). The most common devices are smart watches and health and fitness trackers; these are commonly used by the majority of individuals and are the most popular wearable devices.

Figure 3: Number of connected wearable devices.

  • Changes in the work environment affecting digital sectors and trend analysis: The use of digital technologies in the digital sector is a key factor that can influence the way one works in the future. The introduction of robots in the digital sector will eventually reduce the stress of work significantly, this will also mean that fewer people will be required in the industry to work (Tassabehji et al. 2019). Industrial robotics is being used across various sectors in the UK, which include food and drinks, pharmaceuticals, and the production of cosmetics. People will be required to adjust accordingly in the work environment so that it does not affect the digital sectors in the market. The use of various technologies like smartwatches and fitness trackers has become a trend where people tend to prefer the fitness tracker to keep track of their fitness rather than going to the gym. The changing work environment is also seen due to this aspect, and as a result, it might eventually affect various trends from time to time.

The key benefits of ongoing professional development for different stakeholders in Co-op Supermarket

Professional development refers to the continuation of education and career training even after an individual has entered a particular workforce, so that he or she can develop new skills, stay updated on current trends, and advance more in their career to achieve more success. Here, employees and managers in the co-op supermarket can be considered stakeholders of the organization (Georgiadou, 2019). There are several benefits for the professional development of employees and managers that are provided by the co-op supermarket in the UK and can be helpful to build their careers.

Providing training and development to employees helps the majority of organizations to stay and keep pace with the different changes that happen every day in the industry. Co-op supermarkets also provide training to the employees so that if there are changes in the rules and regulations of the industry, they will be easily able to adapt to the change and move on from thereon. Providing training to the employees also helps employees to get job satisfaction, and morale also tends to remain high, which shows effects on the quality of work being done. Managers in the organization also enjoy different benefits for professional development (Jallow et al. 2020). Different skills can be enhanced by the managers, which will give them the power to have more influence on the company culture. Co-op organizations also encourage managers to increase their skills so that they can have a better influence on the working culture of the company. Improving various skills through professional development will also help managers identify different leadership styles that can suit the individual. Managers get an opportunity to develop and improve lower-ranking subordinates, like employees, by using different skills earned through years of hard work, They can also motivate good employees to improve their skills in order to get higher positions in the future (Aliyu et al. 2020). People are also able to increase their career opportunities, as individuals who gain more skills and experience are preferred in different organizations. Organizations also get benefits from providing professional development options to their employees, as it directly impacts the working culture within the organization.

The importance of ongoing professional development for career success of Co-op Supermarket.

Growth, development, and profit-making are the main aim of any organization and they take all required steps to fulfill these goals. The professional development refers to various approaches, ideas, techniques, and strategies that the employees maintain to manage their growth. There are many things which come under this development, that are, the skill of doing teamwork, listening attentively, social skills as well as positive interdependence. These skills are required to have in the employee of any organisation and this is the same with the co-op supermarket along with that the employee needs some extra skills too like strategic planning, knowledge of digital; technologies as well as marketing.

The co-op supermarket is a cooperative business that is owned, managed as well as controlled by the people who use it. It brings fresh and hygienic products to the market. It needs to develop some features in their employee to take the organisation toward success (Theodos et al. 2018). The professional development that is required in the employee is; they should maintain the culture of the workplace, make a good network, should be bold to make any decision or bring any opinion. These professional developments are crucial for the development of growth and success of the co-op supermarket. The culture in the workplace would maintain the ethics and values of the organisation and take it forward maintaining its organisational culture (Rixon and Brown, 2022). The employee should be courageous and confident, as it is necessary to deal with people. This is also required to be bold enough to make the customer gain confidence and trust in their products. It helps in bringing a positive view of the consumer as well as generate a positive atmosphere in the workplace which will attract customers.

Hence, it could be said that ongoing professional development is very much influential. It is relevant for the development of co-op supermarkets as well as for its success. It would help the organisation to attract more customers and get positive feedback from them. It would also help the organisation to bring more effective ways of business and bringing varieties in their products along with that it takes the organisation forward.

The benefits of professional development for both an individual and Co-op supermarket

Individuals who focus on improving their skills that can be a part of professional development are bound to get different benefits from it, like ways organizations that focus on the professional development of their employee's and the managers are entitled to get various benefits from it. Co-op organizations of supermarkets also give importance to various professional developments that provide them with a lot of benefits. Individuals who focus on developing new skills can expect to get a promotion to a post in the organization and can also move into positions where they can be expected to lead a team or manage, influence, coach, and mentor others (Fletcher-Wood and Zuccollo, 2020). One can expect to become more productive, and efficient in the work they do. They will also be well prepared to make a new contribution to the organization. People who develop their skills from time to time are able to speak confidently about the skills they have learned over the course of time. This helps individuals to deliver a professional service to their customers or clients. Individuals get a competitive edge in the job market compared to others which helps them to get more advantages in the future. It creates benefits for individuals to gain internal promotions within the organization (Siraj et al. 2019). Organizations that allow professional development are able to make their employees adopt various new methods and technologies that come every day in the industry.

An organization like co-op trains employees to learn new skills that help them to retain old skilled employees and therefore able to get the rewards of delivering a quality product to the consumers (Dickfos, 2019). This also helps organizations like the co-op to maintain a positive impact on their consumers and can also help to improve their sales. Organizations will also be able to re-energize their staff which will help them break up the variety of work every day and also increase creativity and innovation to produce better products for the consumers. It will also help organizations to maintain efficiency in their work as employees are expected to be very skilled.

Conclusion and recommendations

The work environment and trends anticipated in the digital sector with reference to professional development and career success.


Digital marketing has a great impact on every organisation and also in cooperative supermarkets. It is helpful to the customers as well as the organisation in various ways. It has a positive impact on business organisations as it made buying or selling any product easier than earlier. It brings variant products before the customers and they get complete control over the purchasing of goods.


Digital technologies and professional development helped the growth of the organisation, but in this competitive world, organisations need to be updated with day-to-day events. They need to have knowledge about the market strategies of their competitors as well as they need to make the employee develop some other qualities in them.

It is recommended to be efficient in to use of technology. The employee should be well efficient in the use of technologies to serve the people according to their requirements.

It is recommended to bring social skills and proper leadership skills among the employees. The people working there should gain more social skills to deal effectively with all sorts of people in the organisation. Thus, the manager needs to be unbiased and have social skills to deal with the people of that organisations as well as the other people.



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