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Digital Transformation

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Banks are responsing in these 3 ways for their digital transformation.

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The Preamble

5G connectivity is set to accelerate the deployment of next generation ubiquitous ultra-high broadband infrastructure. Towards adopting this, intense efforts are on both from the government’s side and the industry. 

 

As a first step , in the last Union Budget, a sum of Rs 270 crores for three years to establish the 5G test bed at IIT Chennai, has also been cleared.  Department of Telecommunication, Government of India has also constituted a high powered 5G committee to speed up the adoption, promote Research and Development in 5G technology, products and services, and development of 5G standards, including generation of IPR.

 

The industry is also building its internal capabilities for 5G deployment of Micro network services, - there are several use cases - to ensure proliferation of affordable 5G services and technologies across all sectors (eg. healthcare, education, transport, utilities, manufacturing) and pan India. Once again, a massive effort to build an inclusive society.

 

 

NASSCOM’s ER&D Council Constitutes a Special Interest Group 

A SIG has been constituted with a select group to share insights in shaping the direction that Industry and Government from India could adopt. This will be a peer group communication helping us with some possible directions for the future.

  1. How can India excel in creating Patents/ IP in 5G
  2. How do we accelerate Innovation in 5 G products
  3. Closer collaboration within the Eco system
  4. Policies/ resources enablement requirement, for the above

 

Meeting Highlights

  • Inclusion of academia especially with a focus on collaboration. There was a mention of IIT Madras which has setup a test bed for 5G; a similar test bed is setup at IIT Delhi by Ericsson which can be made available to test 5G POCs.

 

  • In terms of adoption of standards, it was agreed that Global Standards would be adopted while developing 5G products. Given the nature of evolving standards, it was suggested that India specific use cases be taken up by this team.

 

  • Network Transformation use cases were highlighted – MEC/Edge Cloud, Smart Cities, VNFs, Automotive, Education/Healthcare, etc.

 

  • The team has agreed on 3 major use cases to be developed. These use cases will focus on the areas that need 5G or are limited by 4G technology, and handle critical activities, particularly where data volume is very high including massive interactions with devices/systems.

 

  • Following are the use cases the team prioritized:
    • Create a Modern Dedicated Public Safety Network which at best is prehistoric now and there is a need to upgrade to meet the demand arising due to dense population and need for quick response.

The team has proposed to have Public Safety and Security as a primary use case.

 

  • The demands arising due to Industry 4.0 in interacting with Cyber-Physical systems, is going to be phenomenal in terms of the complexity involved in integrating multiple machines, giving feedback and performing tasks to perfection with minimal or no human intervention.

     The team has proposed to have PoC built on implementing Industry 4.0 for a specific Industry Use case like Smart         Factory etc.

 

  • As the demand for an enriching user experience in e-commerce is steadily on the rise, AR-VR assisted shopping can make a great impact in the e-commerce business.

 The team has finalized AR-VR based e-commerce as another area for the PoC.

 

  • Virtual Private Network was identified as yet another area to explore, as this can enable many new business models and use cases without relying on large investments from the telecom operators.

 

Know more about NASSCOM's initiatives and programs, follow NASSCOM impact stories

Equinor seen as one owner-operator reaching for the clouds and a digital future

ARC takes every opportunity to shout from the rooftops when an owner-operator takes action to help them on their path to digital transformation and operational excellence.  Equinor (fka Statoil) is the one operator which ARC has pointed to in the past as being the most progressive in terms of adopting digital technologies, IIoT-enabled solutions and testing/proving these new technologies in the field.  One cannot overstate the importance of Equinor’s efforts since it most definitely paves the way for other operators who may be more conservative to adopt and deploy IIoT-enabled solutions to help lower cost per boe, increase production and recovery rates, and improve operational synergies and collaboration among their respective ecosystems – both internal and external. Everyone benefits when oil companies can make a profit at lower oil prices since it costs less to fill up my gas tank, costs airlines less to fuel their jets, and lowers the costs of a number of products manufactured from crude oil derivatives.

 

Equinor and Microsoft have recently entered into a strategic partnership agreement. As part of the agreement, Equinor will provide industry knowledge and business needs to support Microsoft in developing new solutions for our industry. Microsoft will provide expertise to accelerate Equinor’s IT development and establish new data center regions in Stavanger and in Oslo.

 

Digital transformation in the cloudSource: Equinor

Cloud Services Empower a Digital Transformation

The partnership with Microsoft enables Equinor to shape and accelerate the development of fit for purpose IT services for the energy industry, and secure a faster transition to the cloud. Leveraging the cloud is a prerequisite for the energy industry’s transformation towards a digital future. Secure, reliable and cost-efficient operations are a requirement for Equinor’s adoption of the cloud.

 

“The rapid technology development creates new opportunities, and the partnership enables our digital journey to deliver more safe, secure and efficient operations. Equinor’s ambition is to become a global digital leader within our industry, and a cloud data center in Norway will simplify and accelerate Equinor’s adoption of the cloud,” says Åshild Hanne Larsen, chief information officer.

Partnerships succeed best when complimentary expertise is leveraged for a common goal

The strategic partnership is a seven-year consumption and development agreement in the hundreds of millions of dollars (USD). The agreement will be a platform to identify innovative solutions for the energy industry and further capitalize on common business opportunities. Equinor and Microsoft will secure the desired outcome by committing key industry and technology expertise. 

 

 “Equinor has a history of innovation and technology development.  Extending our long-standing collaboration with Microsoft enables continued IT-innovation, business growth and furthers our digital ambitions. The strategic partnership will, through cloud services, involve development of the next generation IT workplace, extended business application platforms and mixed reality solutions,” says Åshild Hanne Larsen, chief information officer.

 

ARC believes that as more owner-operators, independent E&P players, oilfield service providers, and other industry stakeholders push forward on their own digital transformational journeys, the oil & gas market will build up its immunity to price swings and help provide safe, more affordable and viable energy resources to mankind worldwide, especially those living in parts of the world where access to reliable and affordable energy is not a reality today.

 

“Reprinted with permission, original blog was posted here”. You may also visit here for more such insights on the digital transformation of industry.

 About ARC Advisory Group (www.arcweb.com): Founded in 1986, ARC Advisory Group is a Boston based leading technology research and advisory firm for industry and infrastructure.

For further information or to provide feedback on this article, please contact lkanickaraj@arcweb.com

 About the Author:

Tim Shea

Senior Analyst

As a senior analyst at ARC, Tim's research primarily focuses on upstream oil & gas automation as well as Digital Oilfield technologies.

Tim's focus areas include upstream oil and gas operational activities in support of the Digital Oilfield including multiphase flow metering, oilfield operations management systems, artificial lift optimization, leak detection systems, drilling optimization, compressor and turbine monitoring & controls, and general field devices such as radar and ultrasonic level measurement devices, and pressure transmitters, among others.

 

 

Remember the early 90s, when the mobile phones were not there. The only way to communicate to an out of office employee was landline phone or personal message via a colleague. Today there is no distinction between professional and personal lives as we are always connected.

 

In the age of Uber, Netflix and Airbnb disrupting traditional industries like Taxis, Video, and Travel; it is a required for organizations that their internal work environment also has a digital disruption.

 

The workplace is changing at an extraordinary rate. Employees have embraced the latest mobile devices and digital technologies at home. They now expect and demand the same in the office. As the latest digital natives join the workforce, having these kinds of tools and applications in place is more important than ever.

 

Improving customer service is the end goal of a digital workplace but the first step is to bolster the employee experience. Organizations are creating digital workplace by integrating e-mails, instant messaging, social media tools, and internal applications.

 

From Baby Boomers to Gen Z, today’s workplace contains a mixture of generations. Everyone has grown up with very different environment, technological and cultural experiences but still, all face similar challenges at work such as information overload, and daily changing technology. 

 

Employees want to be connected across devices and with their colleagues and processes during their workdays

 

With digital enablement, IT service departments are most benefited with services like virtual desktops, software upgrades, remote support are possible.

 

As a digital workplace, many organizations are moving from a physical office or cubicle to a more flexible, open workplace that leverages digital technologies like social, mobile, analytics and cloud computing to create a digital workplace that senses and responds to the information needs of employees – anytime, anywhere, and on any device.

 

By adopting digital workplace, an organization gets diverse benefits:

 

  • Increased employee productivity – with direct communication via digital channels with partners, colleagues, and customers
  • Increased employee retention – due to increased engagement the retention has gone up. Many companies qualify for best place to work
  • Increased talent attraction – the flexibility coming from digital, helps attracts the best talent, who would like to be free from 9 to 6 physical cubes and give their best creativity to organizations
  • Increased satisfaction – this is a no-brainer, as employees get to enjoy full internet connectivity and communication, they are happy at work and off work
  • Increased compliance and governance – with remote connectivity, today IT governance is easy, no need for physical presence of help desk

 

The potential benefits of digitally enabling both staffs and the business mean that organizations will go a long way in satisfying their end customer, which is the very purpose of being in the business.

Late last year, Amazon India rolled out Amazon Business, it’s B2B marketplace with over 100 million products. Soon after, Walmart announced the opening of its first fulfillment center to serve kirana stores. In March this year, Metro Cash and Carry announced that it was starting doorstep delivery for kirana store owners. Why are these top names in retail suddenly turning their focus to B2B order fulfillment? What problem are they trying to solve?
Well, consider a scenario that plays out every day in small stores across India: It’s the height of summer, and Kumar, the owner of a small kirana store in a city, is finding that many of his customers are asking for a new soft drink that’s being advertised heavily during IPL matches.
Kumar has already run out of the stock he had received last Wednesday and would like to order a new, larger batch to keep his customers happy. However, the brand’s salesman’s beat brings him to Kumar’s shop only next Wednesday, which is three days away. Kumar knows that considering that there are hundreds of shops like his in the distributor’s area he is likely to get delivery of his order only 2-3 days after that and even then it’s only likely to be partially fulfilled given the heavy demand. He would probably also need to buy a slow moving product to keep the distributor happy.
So for nearly a week Kumar must turn valued customers away from his store (and towards the big supermarket nearby) and lose out on revenue and customer trust and goodwill. The brand too loses out on the momentum created by the expensive ad blitz and possibly revenue and customer loyalty.

THE PROBLEM


If this sounds like an absurd situation, consider the fact that this has been the reality on the ground for several decades now. As all FMCG professionals know the retail supply network in the industry works on a top-down, push-based model. This is how it works:

  1. Brands send sales executives to retailers either directly or through distributors.
  2. Sales executives visit retailers as per their beat – on average 40-60 stores are covered on a daily beat – and collect orders on a form or, increasingly, on an order taking app, and reports the orders to the distributor/brand at the end of the day.
  3. The distributor/brand sends out delivery vans whenever they feel they have an optimal number of orders to deliver in an area and fulfills the order either completely or in part – well-run brands fulfill over 70% of the orders on average but fulfillment rates are far lower for many others.

This is no doubt a simplistic description of an extremely complex delivery model. But that’s precisely the point – the current model is so complex and slow that it’s costing everyone in the ecosystem, from brands to distributors to retailers to consumers, precious time and money. Clearly, the system is ripe for disruption.       

THE SOLUTION


Now imagine this: Kumar, faced with high demand for the soft drink, opens up an ordering app on his phone, searches for the product, selects the quantity he requires and clicks buy. The order reaches the brand immediately and the order is delivered within 24 hours by a local partner (a distributor or stockist/substockist) in a two-wheeler/rickshaw/van. Kumar can serve his customers seamlessly and the brand stands a chance to increase customer loyalty and revenues and gains a better ROI.  
This bottom-up, direct brand-to-retail supply model has more game-changing benefits for all players in the ecosystem:

  1. Brands get access to real-time, drill down data on market demand that they can use to streamline manufacturing and upstream and downstream supply to ensure that they have enough stock available to meet demand (and nothing more).  
  2. Intermediaries like wholesalers, distributors, stockists and substockists are also able to see orders immediately and plan to fulfill 100% of the orders in a matter of hours.  
  3. Retailers get their orders delivered within hours rather than days and are able to compete with bigger competitors in modern trade and ecommerce in serving customers on demand.
  4. Consumers get their favorite products when they need it, where they need it, and at a good price (owing to lower costs for brands; see below).

What’s more, all these benefits come at a lower cost of capital for everyone involved as the system ensures better working capital utilization by facilitating just-in-time, optimal stocking and efficient delivery. This ultimately reduces the network’s reliance on credit (brands usually provide goods to distributors on credit, who in turn extend credit to retailers, trapping all of them in a never-ending cycle of debt.     

THE NEW ECOSYSTEM

Considering the big problems the technology-driven direct-brand-to-retailer model solves – and the enticing possibility of taking a piece of the ~$70 billion FMCG market – many companies, big and small are now building partnerships with brands and selling order taking apps to retailers. This list include marquee names such as Amazon B2B, Walmart and Metro Cash and Carry as well as small startups, including Bizom’s sister brand Distiman.

It’s still too early to predict winners and losers, but the initial results are encouraging across the board. According to reports in the media, the turnover of Amazon’s wholesale business multiplied 2700 times for fiscal year 2016-2017, validating their B2B thrust.Metro Cash and Carry’s CEO Arvind Mediratta, too expressed faith in their doorstep delivery model for kiranas: “A lot of small businesses gravitate towards us as they don’t get credit or working capital loans, have lower fill rates, don’t have enough SKUs (stock keeping units) and are forced to stock certain products.”

 Among smaller players, some well-funded companies like Shotang and Just Buy Live (JBL) seem to have shut shop while others like Distiman are growing steadily by convincing brands and retailers of the value of a multi-brand direct distribution system.   

CASE STUDY – DISTIMAN


Distiman is a stock ordering app from Mobisy Technologies (the company behind Bizom) that allows retailers to order stock for thousands of products from over 300 brands across different product categories. Distiman fulfils these orders within 24 hours by using a hub-and-spoke model that uses local franchisees and young entrepreneurs for last mile delivery. This allows brands to focus on meeting demand while the platform takes care of core distribution and marketing execution.

The app was envisioned as forward integration for sister brand Bizom’s suite of solutions for sales network automation that includes their market leading sales force automation, distributor management and retail execution modules. “We have already built technology that crunches vast amounts of supply chain and retail consumption data to provide intelligent predictions on right stocking for everyone in the supply chain, including distributors and retailers. This greatly drives up the capital efficiency of these businesses. Plus, we are an ecosystem player. We are leveraging our existing relationships with more than 160 brands with reach to more than 10,000 distributors and more than a million retailers pan India,” said Mobisy’s Chief Growth Officer Arun Narayanan in a 2016 interview.

Fast forwarding to 2018, their bet seems to be paying off. Distiman now services retailers in Kolhapur, Maharashtra, and Mysore, Karnataka, and has onboarded more than 3000 retailers with an average dropsize of Rs. 4300. According to company sources, Distiman’s monthly GMV is increasing 20% MoM.

According to Niranjan Anand, lead of Distiman operations, the success of their model stems from the company’s deep understanding of the retail ecosystem and the relationship it has built with brands over the years. “While Distiman is a game changer for retailers, we also offer many advantages to brands. Our multi-brand model helps brands service outlets more efficiently, providing them almost 50% higher ROI than what can be delivered by a single-brand. We give brands reach in tier-2 and -3 crowds where its not financially viable for them to operate through single-brand distributors. Also, brands can directly communicate offers, loyalty programs or even get research done with retailers individually or by segments. Most importantly, on-demand, just-in-time secondary order fulfilment eliminates stock-outs and makes products available for the final consumer when and where they need it.”

A GAME OF NUMBERS

Distiman’s numbers speak for themselves:

  • 3x more SKUs of a wider variety of brands available at outlets.
  • 40% increased sales for retailers using Distiman.
  • Retailer service time reduced to less than 24 hours from 1 week.
  • Distiman stockist’s capital turnover is 5x of tradition distributor resulting in 3x higher Return of Capital Employed.

HOW TECH COMPANIES CAN DELIVER TRUE VALUE

We believe that while there are several ways in which this model can work, there are some critical features that a technology vendor must provide to ensure success for brands and retailers: 
– First and foremost, a new solution must aim to leverage and streamline the current ecosystem of distributors and stockists/substockists, and not bypass the network which was built over decades and possesses vast stores of business knowledge and wisdom.
– It must deliver real value beyond 24-hour delivery and easy credit and work to weed out limiting practices such as the debt cycle by enabling data-driven decision making around optimal stocking.
– It should easily integrate with related digital systems like sales force automation, distributor management and retail merchandising to allow brands a 360-degree view of market demand and channel partners’activities.
– It should offer data analytics that can drive business decisions up and down the supply chain.

In conclusion, as technology adoption skyrockets in the tradition-bound FMCG sector, nudged along by environmental imperatives such as GST and digital payments, the next few years will see major disruptions in how business is done. The brands that survive the inevitable shakedown will be the ones that use technology to improve their supply network and reach out to partners directly. The technology partners that help these companies up their game will reap rich dividends. The challenge is in winning hearts and minds by devising a model that marries the best of traditional models with the best of what technology has to offer. Watch this space for news and developments in this quiet retail revolution.

To understand the impact Distiman makes on the lives of small kirana store owners, watch this video. For more information, call Distiman at 080 41108397. 

Remember as children we used to play more physical games & ground activities like football, cricket and even some local games. As we grew we were more physical in our daily activities which had helped us to be physically fit.

 

But in last few years digital has changed this picture. My children are glued to iPads, smartphones most of the time. Digital technologies have brought a tremendous shift in the way we spend our daily cores. We order our foods , we call cabs on our smartphones, no banks branch visits are required now as we do most of the financial transactions , and in the age of Whatsapp, nobody uses post to send a news to anyone.

 

This convenience and comfort have brought a sedentary lifestyle & health issues, but more people are wanting to live a healthier lifestyle without burning a hole in their wallets

 

Fitness industry is also adopting this digital change.

 

Some global fitness franchises launched an on-demand streaming services in the USA and UK that lets people access the group’s workouts  any time from a computer, tablet or smartphone.

 

Instead of going to gym now, consumers work out on their own time in their own locations, but trainers and coaches can access their workout data from anywhere, providing quick feedback and tips to guide them along their fitness journey. The exercises are also available in different levels of difficulty: simple, medium and difficult.

 

Digital devices are more and more playing the role of personal trainer. Anyone who wants to train just needs the right fitness app.

 

Freeletics Bodyweight app is more than just a training program. They have a community of over 12 million Free Athletes spread all over the globe. The app provides users with a unique social platform that allows Athletes to connect, motivate and inspire one another and achieve and share their progress and fitness goals.

 

An athletic apparel brand Athos has a full-body suit fitted with tracking sensors connected to an app that shows which muscles are firing and how much an exerciser is exerting himself or herself.

 

Another company, Focus Motion, is building products that connect with a smartwatch to automatically track motion and give real-time feedback on an exerciser's form or pace.

 

Equinox was the first chain to partner with Apple when it launched its Healthkit smartphone app in June 2015. The app syncs with members’ wearable technologies to track fitness data, analyze member behavior, and provide users with recommendations, tips and content to improve their fitness routines. The digital coach in Equinox’s mobile app uses artificial intelligence to learn customers’ habits and keep them engaged.

 

Fitbit, Apple, Garmin, Samsung, Nike & and Adidas are among the major suppliers of digital fitness market.

 

Fitbit tells you you've completed 80% of your daily 15,000 steps goal. So you walk around the house and make an excuse to go to the shop to achieve your goal.

 

The Nike came out with Fuelband, a fitness-oriented tech device which helped consumers to set fitness goals, monitor their progression, and compare themselves to others, all with integration into Nike+  community and phone application.

 

For those who still prefer to visit the gym have been helped by wearable technologies, which give real time feedback on the workouts. From shirts to shoes, wearable technology is now embedded in several types of fitness apparel. Profiles for runs or cycle rides are recorded using the GPS function. The data for distance, speed, duration, calories burnt off and heart rate is captured to support the design of personalized training programs 

 

Modern day gyms are now equipped with workout equipment that are digitized for their clients to get more out of their exercise equipment.Going digital enables the user to choose the level of difficulty of their workout just by pushing some buttons.

 

Today sensors are inserted into pieces of clothing like socks, shorts, leggings, sports bra, etc. These are designed to improve efficacy of wearable trackers, making them highly discreet and increasingly accurate. The algorithms are mimicking a personal coach, tracking activity and technique while simultaneously picking up clues to predict the possibility of injury.

 

Holofit uses the virtual reality technology that transports its users from boring reality in a fitness center or hotel gym to real-life destinations, sport events or imaginative worlds. Users get to work out in space or underwater, in the Grand Canyon or in the historic recreation of Babylon, making progress while forgetting they are working out at all.  They have also added the gamification and sport competition through its SportPlay application so you can take part in competitions like Tour de France.

 

Social media platforms like Facebook and photo/video sharing platforms like Instagram are making a trend of posting your fitness efforts and encourage your friends and families to participate.

 

There is also growing trend of companies offering workplace wellness technologies and programs that are helping achieve better productivity and reduced attrition.

 

Further this smart data is being used by Insurance industry for wellness and prevention of disease.

 

Fitness industry has come a long way with digital.

Over the last decade governments all over have become highly interested in the activity of financial inclusion, and given the obvious economic benefits of inclusion, they are headed in the right direction, but are they taking the right path to do so?
 
As I can see it, the government machinery has been busy creating new acquisition, and distribution channels such as NGOs, post offices, payment banks, banking correspondents, and PSBs (public sector banks) in rural areas to increase the reach of the formal financial services network for some years now. And in terms of increasing the number of formal accounts they have done a good job.
 
But, if you take a closer look at the numbers and it becomes evident that even though the penetration of banking has grown, the utilization of services remains dismally low. For example, the case of Kenya, as seen in the chart below, the inclusion headcount stands at a proud 75%, but only some 15% of the population consume loan services provided by these institutions. This, in my opinion, is a failure of financial inclusion.

 

Source: 2014 World Bank Financial Inclusion Findex

http://datatopics.worldbank.org/financialinclusion/home

 

Despite the best intentions and efforts of the government, the traditional semi-formal/informal financial sector still prevails. The money-lender, the self-help group, at-home savings remain the staple sources of financial services for the semi-urban and rural consumer.
I strongly believe that this is because the policyholders are competing with these traditional structures when they should be collaborating with them. Financial inclusion should be focussed on on-boarding these structures first, then focus on the consumers of these services.
 
Rural financial ecosystems are still controlled by informal operators  (not regulated by banking regulations - this includes moneylenders, rotating or accumulating savings, credit associations, self-help groups (SHG) and private companies),  proving three types of financial products, simple credit facilities, basic saving account or a fixed deposit, and insurance.
 
Maybe its time take stock of the situation and reboot financial inclusion with a different approach. 
 
For true financial inclusion to happen governments needs to include the semi-formal/informal sector rather than competing them. It is high time for the policymakers to revise their approach and not the compete with the existing rural ecosystem but to collaborate with them. Bring them together on a single platform and enable them with technology.
 
The Solution: A central multi-tenant financial inclusion cloud.


The focus needs to be on incentivizing the informal/semi-formal organizations to come together and form associations. Ensure these institutions understand the power of new technologies, and have access to them at an affordable cost.
 
The Government needs to provide them with a digital platform where they can migrate their businesses without losing their individuality. The platform needs to have the following salient features

  • Configurable Rule Engine: A highly configurable rule engine is required so that each of these individual entities can map their businesses flows on the new platform without compromising on their business customs and traditions.
  • Multi-Tenant: Each business entity will be a tenant on the platform and can use common universal services like notification, reports, mobile application if and as required. Shared resources will bring down the cost per user, and ensure business profitability.
  • Multi-Lingual: Platform needs to support multiple local languages on both front and back end
     
    Such a technology will have the following advantages:-

 

  • High Availability: Basic services can be made available 24x7, 365 days on mobile phones at par with big banks.
  • Reliability: Increased operational efficiencies and transparency will increase customer trust and loyalty leading to the larger customer base.
  • Data Security: Protecting sensitive data from breaches, theft or any other malicious activity by unauthorized users will lead to better compliance.
  • Efficiency: Central data can be used as a repository to filter defaulting client which will lead to increased profitability.
  • New Revenue Streams: New services like top-up, utility bill payments, ticketing, and remittances can be introduced which will act as a new revenue stream.
  • Compliance: Central operations may lead to better compliance with regulations eventually leading to bigger credit supports from the government.


The local financial ecosystem is still thriving and shows no signs of letting go because it has its inherent and inimitable strengths. Let us compliment and enhance them, not compete with them.

 

 

Why compete for survival if you can collaborate for success - https://www.paynet.pro/

Digital Transformation is in full swing now and adopted by almost all the industries to improve the customer experience. But not everyone is sailing smooth. In fact, a majority of Digital Transformation initiatives face resistance to change and remain in the status quo.

 

Change is rarely comfortable, for the majority of organizations & employees. It is a normal attitude that when things are going well, why change? Like with any transformation, the lack of interest for change or the fear of consequences puts breaks on the changes you want to bring about.

 

Status quo comes from various different levels

 

  • Organization Leadership: Even at senior level, leaders feel why an external consultant coming into the organization and teaching us what to do, how to communicate with the customer or which business models to choose from. Hence leaders are reluctant to adopt digital open heartedly.
  • Cultural change: The unwillingness of senior managers to accept cultural change.
  • Line Managers of IT Department: Most of the time, IT managers are focused on keeping the lights on and maintaining legacy infrastructure and systems. Digital brings in new demands from business and their priorities are different when it comes to new initiatives.
  • Individual Employee: Many big companies have veterans in their organizations serving more than 15-20 years in the same company. They resist the change of anything new coming their way. Benefits of digital transformation for individual employees and teams are often not so clear - and uncertainty surrounding the future often results in fear to adopt digital
  • Too much is changing, too fast, hence it is hard to keep up

 

Let us see how to address these status quo scenarios.

 

  • Ask senior most leader or CEO to drive the change for Digital with full support from the board.  Leaders need to present a clear and compelling vision of what success will look like
  • Let business owners take the call and IT be just an enablement instead of driving the initiatives.
  • Get all your staff involved in digital. Convince the employees that Digital is for their own betterment & help them do their job better
  • Create an enterprise social network to evangelize digital across the organization
  • IT can help build their competencies and capabilities.
  • 360 degrees communication: Communicate project success and celebrate them which increases transparency, motivates team members & employees to get a sense of the journey and progress on it, as key milestones are attained.
  • With top management’s support for further projects other passive stakeholders are attracted to adopt the change. Senior executives to communicate with employees across all levels of the organization
  • The organization has to decide which new tools are the most appropriate and efficient to acquire and use to avoid changing everything at once

 

Digital Transformation brings in the new business models and it will change the way business is carried out.

By 2030, demand for fresh water is projected to outpace supply by almost 40 percent. Water utilities are being challenged to operate more efficiently, lower operating costs, and enhance customer satisfaction.  Water scarcity has become a universal issue and reducing nonrevenue water has reached critical mass at utilities worldwide.  This is particularly true in arid regions that rely on costly desalinated water as their primary source of potable water.  The utilities are turning to SCADA to increase operator efficiency, engineering efficiency, and process optimization, while also being more responsive to the needs of their customers.

The latest generation of SCADA platforms provide the capability to collect, sort, and analyze data quickly and display it on executive dashboards. A surge of new hardware and software technologies emerging in the industrial sector are disrupting the way systems are designed and organizations operate. Some of the key disruptive technologies being incorporated into SCADA systems include the cloud, virtualization, mobility, Big Data analytics, and other Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) technologies.  

Coming to IoT and data analytics, there are solution providers that use these platforms to drive change from two directions: gathering and analyzing data to improve production processes, and then using the aggregated data to create solutions with a good business value proposition.  One such solution was presented by Ecolab's subsidiary Nalco at the recent ARC Industry Forum in Orlando.

An IoT-Based Approach

Using Microsoft Azure cloud to enhance its ability to deliver personalized services and drive innovation, Nalco can connect to thousands of sensors in facilities worldwide.  Nalco’s 3D TRASAR platform for real-time water monitoring collects and analyzes real-time water usage data to improve efficiency and cut water, energy, and operational costs. The company is taking full advantage of the Microsoft Azure platform, including the Azure IoT Suite, to accelerate water scarcity solutions for customers across multiple industries around the world. 

In addition to TRASAR, Ecolab has developed a Water Risk Monetizer that enables companies to quickly and easily assess how water availability and quality could impact their ability to operate, grow and generate profit. Water Risk Monetizer is also built on Microsoft Azure and assess water-related risks at a site and enterprise level. The tool can help end users make a better business case for proactive water management strategies and prioritize locations for investment based on water scarcity risk. In short, it helps customers understand the full value of water to their operation. 

Microsoft Drastically Reduces Data Center Water Costs

Microsoft recently used the Water Risk Monetizer to help inform strategic water management decisions at its data center in San Antonio, Texas.  The data center is located within the Leon Creek Watershed, an extremely water-stressed region which also presents water quality issues due to flooding, storms and stream bank erosion. Data from the Water Risk Monetizer revealed that the risk-adjusted value of Microsoft’s water use at this data center was more than 11 times greater than the current water bill presented by the San Antonio Water System. The numbers made the business case. Microsoft installed Nalco’s TRASAR, which enabled the plant to reliably use recycled water instead of potable water, saving Microsoft more than $140,000 in water costs and avoiding the use of 58.3 million gallons of potable water per year.  

Digital Transformation for Water Management

At the foundation level i.e the field device level, flow and level measurement devices, mainly ultrasonic flowmeters, are employed in the water & waste water industry to measure flow. Connecting the smart flowmeters with IoT is helping both industrial and commercial owners to track water usage, control quality of water and reduce costs to large extent. Data from these smart meters is sent to the controller, which is then sent to the cloud for further actions. Access to the cloud data via apps enables users to switch on/off the valve and track wastage as well as over consumption. 

ARC's will release the latest worldwide market report on ultrasonic flow and level measurement devices soon, to give a more indepth view of the Flowmeters and Level transmitters Market.

 

“Reprinted with permission, original blog was posted hereand  here  ”. You may also visit here for more such insights on the digital transformation of cities and industry.

 About ARC Advisory Group (www.arcweb.com): Founded in 1986, ARC Advisory Group is a Boston based leading technology research and advisory firm for industry and infrastructure.

 For further information or to provide feedback on this article, please contact akanagali@arcweb.com

 

About the Authors:

Mark Sen Gupta, Director of Research

Larry O'Brien, Vice President, Research

 

Mark leads ARC's coverage of process automation, process safety, SCADA, terminal automation, and automation supplier services. He is also part of the IIoT Team.

 

Larry is responsible for providing oversight in ARC's research into process automation markets, including process automation systems, process safety systems, plant asset management systems, intelligent device management strategies, and field networks.

 

About ARC Advisory Group (www.arcweb.com)-  Founded in 1986, ARC Advisory Group is a Boston based leading technology research and advisory firm for industry and infrastructure.

Digital disruptions are impacting all the industries and pushing organizations to change or die. 

 

The residential real estate industry was built upon personal relations and contacts. Knowing the trustworthy estate agent personally, was more comfortable for buyers to make investments.

 

Today the scenario is changing. Several online estate agencies have been set up, which allow owners to buy and sell properties digitally.

 

At every step in the process of finding, visiting and buying a home, property managers are now focused on enhancing the customer experience with help of digital technologies.

 

Digital technologies are used for real estate portals, to find a trusted agent, view potential properties and invest as required.

 

Some property managers allow their agents to shoot, edit and upload video footage of their properties using their mobile devices. This resulted in the increase in reach and quick selling.

 

Digitization can help you increase your reach from a bunch of agents and investors to thousands of individuals who have interests in purchase and sale of Real Estate.

 

Digital has come into real estate as well:

 

  • In searching the properties – Buyers can go online on MagicBricks.com,

99Acres.com to rent or check out the property before buying.

  • Virtual tours of the property – commonfloor.com gives you live-in tours saying see your next home from every angle. This reduces time and expense for owners and creates convenience for the buyers.
  • All the Frequently asked questions about the proposed project can be answered in a direct chat with use of emerging technologies like chatbot powered with artificial intelligence
  • The old-fashioned hardcopy of blueprints is now replaced by Building Information Modeling (BIM) which uses 3-D computer modeling. This helps architects and contractors to collaborate more easily and make on-the-fly alterations to existing designs. Maintenance becomes very easy as the BIM model contains all construction data in a single plan.
  • With Social media presence, buyers can get multiple reviews and comments on the properties and even ask the agents to take them on a video tour of the property through WhatsApp, FaceTime, Skype etc.

 

From the buying or selling when we come to occupied properties, digital technologies are used for the betterment of occupants.

  • Smart Buildings: Facilities including power management, lighting, physical security, fire safety and IT infrastructure.
  • Smart Energy: Automatic lighting control, may vary from obvious night-time auto-activation to dimming based on crowd density and weather conditions. Nest offers a number of innovations like motion detectors to adjust the heat settings when the family has left for the office or schools.
  • Smart Meters - Every home will have a smart meter to control the power usage and report in real time.
  • Smart Water System: IoT sensor enabled water systems which measure the flow, pressure, level and chemical content of the water to improve quality and usability
  • Smart Access: Users can open home doors or office doors by just touch of a finger or even with IoT enabled sensors ensuring garage doors are opened when users are approaching

 

 

From living rooms to the yard, we are embracing the digital technologies which are helping the booming real estate industry.

A few years ago, the impact of digitization was only established in top industries like Banking, Insurance, and Retail. Now times have changed – the recruitment industry is also adopting digital transformation.

 

Everyone is a candidate at some point in their journey. Whether you are an employer or a candidate searching for a job, the digital transformation is helping the recruitment industry to implement smarter hiring strategies.

 

Recruiters are the brand ambassadors of a company as they are the first people with whom a candidate interacts. But getting the right people with the right skills, at the right price, has been a long-running headache for recruitment teams.

 

It’s a competitive marketplace for talent, with demand for skilled labor far exceeding the supply of qualified candidates actively looking.  This makes it more important need for recruiters, to master new digital techniques to find, reach and engage right skilled potential candidates.

 

Candidates seeking jobs in the market are also now tech-savvy and expect fast and easy application processes and communication. Their behaviors and preferences are changing. Power has transferred from recruiter to candidate.

 

There are multiple ways digital can help:

 

Assess the digital footprint of the candidate: Recruiters can use this data to get important insights into the skills of potential candidates. Correlations between social media profiles can reveal important aspects such as interests and hobbies, as well as an overview of the candidate’s personality. How suitable is the candidate to an organization’s culture can be assessed based on her/his social media sharing habits on subjects like gender, age, race, and politics.

 

Online language/skill assessment:  It is one of the easiest ways for companies to filter through the pool of candidates efficiently. Recruiters can ensure the quality of their hires via psychometric and other tests.

 

Online job portals:  Monster, Glassdoor, Indeed, Naukri and TimesJobs have helped in reaching out to candidates across different geographies and industries. They have also helped in building good candidate pipelines for recruiters. LinkedIn has started this revolution long back and has the credibility of companies as well as candidates equally.

 

Advantages of Digital Transformation in Recruitment:

  • Your website messaging can be targeted to different candidate personas
  • Candidates can easily engage with your company on social and mobile
  • Helps create the company brand in the digital world
  • Machine learning is helping is processing piles of applicants to find the right candidate
  • The organization can nurture candidates over time by relevant job alerts, talent campaigns
  • Social media presence generate the better response from talents to the brand
  • Digitization helps in ease of entire recruitment process and in turn happy candidates
  • Job seekers get an inside view of a company through a site like Glassdoor, which includes information on compensation, organizational culture, career progression, learning opportunities, etc.
  • Through the use of Big Datalearning companies can find suitable candidates, cut recruitment time and costs
  • Consolidated database of CVs becomes a powerful mining tool and cost saver

 

 

Digital is helping to convert the chaos of recruiting into “Smart Recruiting”.

‘If you are not moving forward, you are moving backward’, is a saying that holds true in the current business ecosystem. In this era of ever-changing technology and business dynamics, one doesn’t have the luxury of time and hence the ability to wait for the right occasion. If one doesn’t pace up and stride along the shifting tides of innovation and technology the likely outcome is to be left behind. While 2017 was a year of boardroom discussions about a lot of the disruptive technologies, 2018 is predicted to be the year of action where most of the disruptive technologies will see the limelight. Technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, and the Internet of Things, etc., are all pushing us to the Edge and have become an integral part of every companies’ future goals. With no further ado let’s take a deep dive into the world of disruptive technology and list down some of the Digital Trends that the year 2018 will witness.

 

1.        IoT Gets Bigger and Better

Since 1982, when the concept of “a network of smart devices” was discussed, until today, when the Internet of Things has become a key enabler to the digital future, this technology has shown enough endurance and potential to make it to the top of this list. The year 2018 will witness IoT enter into the next stage of business, where it will not be just about ‘Connected Things,’ but more about what do we do with the enormous amount of data that these connected things provide us. Thus, giving way to the need for three most important technologies, Data Analytics, Edge Computing and 5G. IoT will now become more mainstream rather than working in niches. According to Carrie MacGillivray, VP of IoT and Mobility at IDC “By 2021, more than 55 percent of spending on IoT projects will be for software and services.”

 

2.        Data Analytics

Gartner, Inc. forecasts that “8.4 billion connected things will be in use worldwide in 2017, up 31 percent from 2016, and will reach 20.4 billion by 2020.” Given that scenario, we will have an enormous amount of real-time data streams. It is crucial to apply analytics on top of these data to unearth the only relevant information in the crowd of millions and uncover actionable insights that will help take controlled decisions for the future, thus finally harnessing the power of IoT and making it worthier for businesses.

 

3.        Edge Computing

While the companies have just accepted the fact that Cloud Computing was necessary for their business, the digital transformation now calls for a more integrated approach, and the key to it is Intelligent Edge. Driven by the sheer volume of data and speed that Internet of Things demands, it had become highly impractical to use the cloud as storage, therefore, creating a market for Edge computing that will power real-time responses and processing. It will help reduce latency, lower the dependency on the Cloud and better manage the massive data generated by the IoT. “By 2020, IT spend on Edge Infrastructure will reach up to 18% of the total spend on IoT Infrastructure,” predicts IDC.

 

4.        5G Mobile Technologies

While 4G will continue to evolve among the smartphone users for many years to come, the 5G network is specially designed to handle the hyper-connected digital world of the Internet of Things and Digital reality. Asha Keddy, the general manager of mobile standards for advance tech at Intel, says, “The 2G networks were designed for voice, 3G for voice and data, and 4G for broadband internet experiences. With 5G, we’ll see computing capabilities getting fused with communications everywhere, so trillions of things like wearable devices don’t have to worry about computing power because the network can do any processing needed.”

 

5.        Artificial Intelligence

Artificial Intelligence is no more just discussion over the coffee table. With ‘Hey Siri,’ ‘Alexa’ and ‘Ok Google’ Artificial Intelligence is already a crowd puller. From Machine Learning to AI-powered chatbots in customer service and support, to using natural language processing as a new form of human-computer interface, AI Technology is paving the way to success. It is anticipated that AI can have the power to help companies to strategize marketing and business plans by aggregating data and deriving actionable insights, helping manufacturers inefficient production, the government in deploying resources efficiently, and many more such used cases.

 

6.        Augmented Reality goes mainstream

If you have ever used the new Snapchat lens or played Pokemon Go last year, then you have already had the experience of Augmented Reality. With the extensive use of smartphone apps, headsets, and glasses, this technology is growing at an explosive rate. Augmented Reality is going to become indispensable in our lives owing to its ability to create a physical world (Physical + digital) and by adding virtual computer graphics. This industry is projected to reach $7 trillion by 2027, with nearly $50 billion in expected revenue by 2021.

 

7.        Blockchain

Blockchain initially devised for Bitcoin, is not just a financial technology. It has its business application in many other sectors like healthcare, education, manufacturing, Government, energy, supply chain, etc. According to Gartner, “by 2030, the business value added by Blockchain will grow to $3.1 trillion.” International Data Corp’s Health Insights Report predicts that one-fifth of healthcare providers will have operationalized Blockchain by 2020, which means that year 2018, will see a lot of adoption of this technology mostly in the healthcare sector.

 

8.        Retail – The Amazon way!

Amazon has brought a revolution in the world of Retail. Retailers have not started realizing that going digital with their store is not just an extension of their physical store. The year 2018 will be for the brands which will go the Amazon way and start bridging the gap between digital and physical shopping. According to Bloomberg Business, “50 percent” of the shoppers in the US turn to Amazon first when shopping for a product online. Amazon’s “Day1 Mantra”, its loyalty program with “Amazon Prime,” have all worked together well to create a brand value for its customers. 2018 Retail brands are expected to work in providing an Immersive and Omnichannel experiences for the shoppers with exceptional in-store as well as online experience for them.

 

9.     Event Driven

With the advent of technologies like Artificial Intelligence, IoT, etc., business events can be delivered more quickly and analyzed in preeminent details. Thus, pushing Enterprises to think seriously about “Event Driven Architecture.” EDA is a design model of software that responds when it receives one or more event notifications. According to Gartner, “By 2020, event-sourced, real-time situational awareness will be a required characteristic for 80% of digital business solutions, and 80% of new business ecosystems will require support for event processing.”

 

10.    Digital Twin

Digital Twin is a digital representation of the physical assets, process or system. These digital representations are linked to the real-world counterparts and derive information that will add value and improve the operational efficiency of the physical entity. According to IDC, “By 2020, 30% of G2000 companies will be using data from digital twins of IoT connected products and assets to improve product innovation success rates and organizational productivity, achieving gains of up to 25%.” However, Digital Twin will not just be limited to IoT and connected things. Half of the large industrial companies will use Digital Twins in their organizations to gain 10% more effectiveness, says Gartner.

Change is inevitable, and the above-listed technologies are mere tools in the process of building smarter, efficient and well-connected World. There would be a lot of arguments about whether making the world into a technology unit is a wise decision or not. Like I said earlier, “If you are not moving forward, you are moving backward.” It’s your choice to make a strategic business move into the world of evolving technology. I believe that we should providing innovative technologies with a dash of Happiness.  Let’s harnessing the next gen technologies to create the ‘Digital Capital’ to achieve ‘digital Transformation.

Author: Rajiv Peddada

Originally Published in: TTI newsletter May 2018

Get to know us more: www.happiestminds.com

IQ…EQ…and now it is DQ! Intelligence, emotional, and digital quotient. Today it’s not enough to be highly intelligent or emotionally balanced – these are givens. The question is that in this era of digitization, what is your individual and company’s digital quotient? That is, what is your digital competence/expertise as compared to the expected growth and potential of the digital market? 

 

Look around and you’ll find that the focus of all conferences in India is on new technologies and digitization.  Since January this year there have been atleast two conferences a month exclusively on the wave of digital transformation and how industries have started to evaluate, identify, and bridge knowledge gaps. Such conferences facilitate networking, exchange of insights and best practices, and prepare the ground for new ways of collaborative working. The central themes of these conferences hinge on:

  • Effective digital strategy
  • Understanding the challenges
  • Continuous learning and adapting
  • Applying new management and technical skills

 

Books have been written on this topic. Some have alarming titles, such as Digital or Death: Digital Transformation – The Only Choice for Business to Survive, Smash, and Conquer; and Digitize or Die. But these titles make one realize the imperative to digitize strategies, portfolio, and business organization. Technologies are evolving at breakneck speed, but have not yet established rigid rules or ways of doing things. The rules of the game can be adapted and customized according to the organization’s needs.  A lot of these technologies are discussed at ARC forums.

 

The Digital Enterprise at ARC Forums

At ARC’s forums worldwide the theme for the last few years has centered on the digital enterprise. We look at the concept of digital transformation from every aspect of business, industry and infrastructure, presenting case studies of how digital transformation is under way in manufacturing today. The forum presentations make it clear that there is increasing recognition among industrial companies that new approaches are disrupting established business models; and to keep pace it is imperative to adopt new strategies and processes. Some companies already have a robust strategy for digital transformation, along with a realizable roadmap.  This digital transformation will be widespread with far reaching impact as it necessitates the collaborative convergence of information technology (IT), operational technology (OT), engineering technology (ET), and a host of other services.

 

According to a presentation at the India forum by NASSCOM, an industry body, the digital forces driving customer experience are: intensifying competition, disruptive innovation, and new technologies - all leading to a more aware customer base.  Diagrammatically explaining the challenges surrounding digital transformation initiatives -

Digital Quotient

These challenges apply across most industries in India.  A speaker from the oil and gas sector said that these challenges can be addressed by going digital and enhancing continuous improvement.  The business model has changed from “maintaining business” to “growing business.” And business can grow only through digitization, which reduces costs; facilitates faster and intelligent decision making; nurtures innovation; and provides a single version of the truth. Digitization enables manufacturers to improve the performance of their service operations by facilitating:

  • Remote connectivity
  • Predictive maintenance
  • Continuous uptime
  • Rapid service response
  • Incremental, revenue-producing products and services

 

Orlando Industry Forum

Seeing the video uploads of the presentations made at the recent Orlando Industry Forum it is evident that digitization is not just a hot topic – it is the way businesses have to be transacted to remain competitive and survive.  A few years ago, new technologies, such as cloud computing, mobility, Internet of Things, Big Data/analytics, and 3D visualization, seemed like mere business jargon; but today, these technologies are driving industrial growth.  

 

The keynote addresses at this year’s ARC Industry Forum in Orlando, focused on the new open and secure hardware and software platforms that will play an increasingly important enabling role within a successful digital enterprise; and as companies, municipalities, and transportation networks become digital enterprises, they will need a few more digital platforms, including platforms to support the Internet of Things (IoT).  Most major automation and equipment companies will develop their own cloud platforms, which are open and able to work together.  For the first time ARC hosted an end user–driven   Digital Transformation Council  at the forum, eliciting multiple perspectives.

Digital Quotient

Developments in the Digital Space

Conferences and ARC forums drive home the fact that organizations must clearly define their digital strategies and work collaboratively to ensure success. Developments in the digital space are a good indicator of the collective rising digital quotient. But how does one constantly improve the DQ? I think it can be done by business networking, keeping abreast of latest technologies, and learning from the experience of others. In India, the government is trying to encourage the transition to a Digital India through various schemes and incentives. There has been some degree of success; but this has to percolate through the layers of bureaucracy and varying skillsets. We are all at different stages on the digital journey – but the objectives are the same – resource optimization, operational efficiency, and enhanced productivity. And as our digital quotient improves we will achieve these objectives.

 

“Reprinted with permission, original blog was posted here”. You may also visit here for more such insights on the digital transformation of industry.

 About ARC Advisory Group (www.arcweb.com): Founded in 1986, ARC Advisory Group is a Boston based leading technology research and advisory firm for industry and infrastructure.

For further information or to provide feedback on this article, please contact lkanickaraj@arcweb.com

 About the Author:

Sharada Prahladrao

Editor and Public Relations Manager

Sharada is the editor and public relations manager at ARC India. She edits ARC's Global Market Outlook studies and co-authors ARC Strategy Reports and Insights. She has the innate ability to understand complex concepts and express them lucidly.

Prior to joining ARC, Sharada worked as a copywriter for F.D. Stewart and Clarion Advertising; provided media-related work for Corvo Shandwick, a PR firm; and freelanced for local newspapers. She has been involved with two NGOs: integrating children with disability into mainstream education and rural education programs.

For rail and other transportation industries, the fourth industrial revolution promises continuing acceleration of innovation on both the supply and demand side. Digitization can enhance the railway infrastructure, maximize availability, and improve the operational efficiency of all assets. From the manufacture of rolling stock to how rail operators serve their customers, new technologies will lead to entirely new ways of doing business. Despite steady progress, the rail industry needs to continue to pursue these objectives. By embracing an integrated rail ecosystem and new cognitive technologies to acquire, associate and apply information, railways can become more efficient and effective, and can create a more responsive and agile operating environment.

 

 Digitization in the Railway Industry is Slowly Coming

Digitization in the Railway industry

Now the world is entering a fourth industrial revolution, which, in the words of the World Economic Forum, will be “characterized by a fusion of technologies that is blurring the lines between the physical, digital, and biological spheres.” The rail industry is continuously deploying emerging and cutting-edge technologies. But, both passenger and freight railways must continually improve, innovate and enhance the traveler and customer experience. The digital industry will support new applications and business models for manufacturing and disrupt all phases of the supply chain. The product development process will be fully digitized, making it faster and more flexible. Railroads and their suppliers, working together, will be able to use real-time data, digital models, and virtual tooling and testing environments to reduce time and cost for the development of smarter and more sustainable trains. In addition, streaming data from a train in operation will be fed back to improve the design and build process, as well as enable better predictive maintenance.

 

To achieve the interconnectedness that will power the near future of the railway industry, railways need to:

  • Collaborate beyond their comfort zones by partnering with adjacent service providers, creating an ecosystem of value
  • Use cognitive computing to harness data both inside and outside their enterprises to drive revenue, reduce cost, and win market share

 

Rail can be expected to play an important role in next-generation mobility, which will be increasingly characterized by a desire for access rather than ownership, technology-enabled transparency, two-way communication, and shared consumption.

 

Passenger Rail

Digitization in the Railway industryFor customers, getting from origin to destination is seamless. Railways offer door-to-door journeys, so they meet customers’ travel needs at each step. Railways enjoy a higher conversion rate and better revenue from sales and marketing efforts. Digitization will improve ticket changing and pricing, and make access for customers easier. Most major rail companies are pushing mobile ticketing solutions; this will be especially good for customers if simpler or best-price fare systems are introduced in countries that now have complex tariff systems. Further improvements can be expected in customer feedback management. Current processes are extremely slow, inefficient, and not customer oriented. Railways anticipate evolving customer preferences and offer assistance. They communicate with customers through their preferred channels—especially mobile devices—and deliver relevant, timely and personal marketing offers.

 

Freight Rail

On the freight side, products themselves will increasingly be direct users of the Internet; connected railcars and containers will provide their own streaming updates on location, condition, and itinerary. Longer term, autonomous cars, and trucks will communicate directly with dispatch centers, terminals, and even trains, ensuring their passengers and cargos are at the right place at exactly the right time. Freight railways monitor facilities, assets, systems, and shipments in real time. Network velocity, on-time delivery, customer service, labor utilization and productivity are all improved. Downtime and delays are avoided. Railways leverage their operational cost advantages and extend their services as the focal point for door-to-door transport, now enhanced by insight into their own operational performance and partnerships with supply chain providers.

 

Digitization will appropriately align capacity with a demand that requires optimization of the existing passenger and freight rail schedules and train sets to achieve increased throughput on existing rail infrastructure. It will avoid the bottlenecks to keep operations flowing smoothly and keep costs down. Rail companies are increasing asset utilization and optimization by making significant investments in digitization, partnerships, and infrastructure to meet the capacity challenge.

 

Companies are already beginning to see incremental benefits from this fourth revolution. Long-term substantive benefits will be more challenging, requiring a new level of coordination between transportation suppliers and operators, and the willingness to embrace transformation that goes beyond information technology to the continuous revamping of organizational functions and activities as new game-changing innovations emerge.

 

Conclusion

Ultimately, with digitization, the rules of business will be different, governed by a paradigm of being shareable, accessible, reliable, and able to perform at marginal cost. Companies will need to be both integrated and decentralized, and engage both their suppliers and customers more broadly and deeply. Technology is enabling new entrants and competitors to quickly create value, threatening the traditional rail model. Rail executives should strive to develop an interconnected rail ecosystem by embracing disruption. Deploying cognitive technologies will enable railways to become more efficient and effective, and will allow them to operate with more responsiveness and agility. Railroads have a long history as networked businesses; the fourth industrial revolution will extend those networks in ways that we are only beginning to comprehend. As the rail industry embraces connectedness and cognitive technologies, this investment will accelerate new railway intelligence, enabling enhanced industry-wide knowledge and business model innovation.

 

“Reprinted with permission, original blog was posted here”. You may also visit here for more such insights on the digital transformation of industry.

 About ARC Advisory Group (www.arcweb.com): Founded in 1986, ARC Advisory Group is a Boston based leading technology research and advisory firm for industry and infrastructure.

For further information or to provide feedback on this article, please contact lkanickaraj@arcweb.com

 About the Author:

Pranav Misal

Analyst

Pranav’s focus areas at ARC include Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), Transportation (Railways, Marine, Aviation), Smart Technology, and Asset Performance Management.

Pranav joined ARC after graduating with an MBA Marketing degree in June 2017.  Prior to ARC, he worked for three years as a technical marketing engineer at Forbes Marshall in Pune, India.  He was responsible for product marketing of condition monitoring systems, and his target industries were oil and gas, power, defense, and transportation.  At Forbes Marshall, he conducted market research and competitive analysis to identify potential markets and effectively used value-based pricing strategies for market penetration.

Which famous business brands do you use daily & give you happy moments? Top names come to our mind are Apple, Disney, Coca-Cola, McDonald's, Cadburys which are occupying most part of our lives.

 

Company’s brand is the summation of all the experiences and interactions business has with their customers. In the digital era, there will be even more brands to choose from. Perceptions of the brand are based on the simple user experiences. and to stay relevant, it needs to be managed very effectively.

 

Today’s digital consumers do not have the brand affinity. They switch from app to app and from brand to brand when it is convenient. They have endless options at the click of a button, which makes it easy to switch when they are unsatisfied with a brand.

 

Customers want quick, easy access to information across channels without needing to enter conversations with product sellers before they are ready. At the same time, they also expect businesses to personalize their experiences with the first interaction and to be available the moment they are ready to learn more or buy.

 

As a result, many brands struggle to keep a competitive advantage. They have to re-think their strategies for attracting and retaining customers.  More than ever before, brands are turning to the power of digital technologies like Analytics in an effort to attract, engage and retain customers.

 

For CMOs it is important to bring the power of human relationships back into the entire brand experience that will create more lasting loyalty. They need to look beyond optimizing lead generation to nurturing relationships throughout the entire customer lifecycle, from creating awareness through acquisition, service, and recommendation

 

The success of digital transformation depends on the CMO-CIO partnership. Today CMOs need the support of the CIO to connect internal systems that translate into customer experience and brand performance.

 

It is extremely important to leverage digital technologies and bring your brand to the minds of prospects and deliver seamless and meaningful experiences for current customers is extremely important.

 

Brands need to embrace mobile-first as a strategy not only for customers but also for staff and partners. Consumers use mobile as a key tool for research, so having relevant and the easy-to-access information is essential. Several brands are using emerging technologies like chatbots, AR/VR to make customer experience a memorable one.

 

We know the top global brands like Amazon, Apple, Samsung, Coca-Cola, Disney, Nike & BMW for the experience they give when we interact with them.

  • Ikea uses an Augmented Reality app that works like a virtual interior designer and allows customers to visualize 3D versions of its furniture in their homes.
  • Zappos created a brand by focusing on what customer wants and is considered the gold standard for online customer care.
  • Louis Vuitton was one of the first luxury brands to develop an active presence on Snapchat.
  • Gucci & Burberry have exploited digital to reach their customers wherever they are.
  • L’Oréal’s ‘Makeup Genius’ app allows women to virtually try on its cosmetics products using augmented reality technology.
  • Dollar shave club knows how to grab the attention of their target audience with digital technologies.
  • Airbnb created their brand by digital marketing using user-generated photos and videos.

The ultimate aim of any digital transformation initiative should always be the strengthening of your company’s brand identity.