• October 13, 2015

From Soup to Nuts: Transformation Impacts Everything

By Ron Brown, Chief Technologist, EMEA, Enterprise Services, and Distinguished Technologist, Hewlett Packard Enterprise

Enterprise transformation is not only driving business strategy; it’s disrupting the enterprise itself. Digital technology, connected devices, and analytics are transforming every facet of every business, from product development to manufacturing to human resources. No element of work is immune.

Over the next few years, this transformation will shift in profound ways, enabling new products, services, and business models.

Marketing Upheavals

Digitization and mobility are redirecting tremendous power to the customer. Result: Businesses are discovering that customer behaviors and interactions are evolving at a furious pace. To keep up, marketers need to reformulate their strategies by deploying efficient processes, supportive technologies and people with the right skills to enable brands and shape consumer interactions.

Example: SmartWool, a maker of high-performance athletic apparel, drove a product development and marketing campaign by recruiting testers through Facebook. These testers purchased the new SmartWool products, then put the goods through rigorous trials and flooded the company with performance insights. They suggested improvements such as thumbholes in jacket sleeves so that they could be used as mittens. Testers also submitted ideas for new products. SmartWool turned the crowd-sourced testing effort into an ad campaign featuring field testers and the products they co-developed, driving deeper connections with SmartWool users.

To sharpen competitive edge, enterprise marketers need to create and drive formal digital content strategies to leverage the blossoming array of marketing channels. Think of it as a content supply chain, where customer behaviors and motivations are mapped and interactions generate insights that fuel a superior customer experience.

Optimizing Widgets

Value propositions on the factory floor are shifting from acquiring reliable industrial equipment to harvesting intelligence from that equipment. By applying analytics to data generated from machinery, manufacturers have the capability to optimize the manufacturing process through digitally generated insights.

In transportation and logistics, enterprises are generating value through connectivity and tightly managed coordination utilizing data streams and analytics. Norfolk Southern uses network-optimization systems to manage trains across the rail network, moving freight faster and more intelligently. Rail line and traffic information are used to safely boost train speeds and reduce lost time from expired crews (personnel compelled to meet time-off requirements). Airlines are using equipment-generated data streams to predict maintenance issues and drive preventive strategies, maximizing value through optimized aircraft utilization.

Human Resources

Digital technology is redefining the future of human resources. Mobility and connectivity are empowering employees by giving them a greater share of the HR voice. They’re creating their own work experiences and are playing a role in talent management, as information and decision-making decentralize the workforce. Meanwhile, HR is becoming more of a marketing operation, analyzing employee data and creating customized talent offerings while branding talent and human-resource processes.

Markets Place High Value on Transformation

As mobility, edge computing, and analytics become ubiquitous, dramatic shifts will sweep workflows and enterprise relationships both internally and externally. Virtually every major manufacturer, for example, will be compelled to include connectivity and intelligence in its product lines and internal systems. They are already placing higher values on organizations that integrate connectivity and intelligence into their businesses and products.

As this new industrial revolution unfolds, new value propositions from the factory floor to the advertising campaign will be paramount. To adapt, the enterprise will require a clear visionary focus—one that can rapidly pivot with changing conditions.

For more insight on how to transform your organization, read The Age of Enterprise Transformation on Enterprise Forward.