Digital Transformation

Digital Transformation of the Waste Industry

January 28, 2021

Most industries are undergoing digital transformation as technology penetrates further into business processes, offering key efficiency and operational improvements. Businesses that have embraced digital transformation have reaped competitive advantages and uncovered new opportunities. According to IDC, two-thirds of the CEOs of Global 2000 companies have made digital transformation an integral part of their corporate strategies. 

To stay competitive in our rapidly changing world, businesses must utilize digital technologies. As part of this much larger wave of change, the waste industry has begun to make use of and explore the further potential of emerging technology, as evidenced by:

  • Smart bins with fullness sensors and solar panels 
  • Smart trucks with asset tracking
  • Robots guided by machine learning AI algorithms

While these examples are just the tip of the iceberg, they have made processes significantly faster, more accurate and efficient. 

Digital transformation can be seen as a design methodology to create more value than existing systems. With the simple use of a mobile app, building and facility management can reach their waste hauling company with the click of a button, allowing waste to be disposed of at the optimum time, while using smaller bins and eliminating issues like overflowing bins and odor issues.

Technology can also be used internally to better manage waste disposal: with optical sorters and the coming of robots/AI at material recovery facilities (MRFs), the waste stream can be automatically sorted into different categories and the best method can be determined to manage the waste downstream, based on value in secondary markets. This would enhance efficiency of the waste management system and increase options for more environmentally friendly solutions waste disposal. 

Of course, cybersecurity is critical. Recent high profile data breaches have proven to be costly for various organizations, with millions of dollars in losses and damage to their customer trust. 

Digital transformation will bring great opportunities in the next decade, to both new and legacy businesses that embrace this paradigm shift. Either way, change will continue occurring at an unprecedented pace. 

To learn about how Zabble is playing a central role in the digital transformation of waste management, please get in touch with our team.