In January we announced that we had finished the work to integrate Hitachi Consulting Corporation with Hitachi Vantara. The “new” Hitachi Vantara now combines the consulting-led digital solutions and vertical industry expertise of Hitachi Consulting with Hitachi Vantara’s edge-to-core-to-cloud infrastructure and data management and analytics software and solutions. The result is what CRN described as a merger that creates an “IT Powerhouse.”
Our deep roots in both IT and operations technology combined with our strategic advisory and consulting expertise can now accelerate our customers’ digital journeys faster than ever. With more than 25 years of helping clients in over 70 countries, our Consulting Services teams are helping organizations around the world develop and implement digital strategies that transform their operations, improve customer experiences and create new business models.
Like many of our customers, we operate in diverse and risk-averse industries. And we bring digital expertise and insights based on Hitachi’s own experiences in everything from transactional systems that power high-frequency stock trading, to bullet trains that carry thousands of passengers a day, to power grids, award-winning factories, advanced medical equipment, and smart cities. This real-world experience informs and deepens our engagements with clients and gives us a pragmatic perspective on “the art of the possible” when it comes to digital initiatives.
These are unprecedented times as societies everywhere deal with COVID-19. Hitachi is working closely with our customers to evolve and adapt to the new realities. As priorities shift, digital priorities—for serving customers, keeping operations up and running remotely—are evolving, and for many, digital strategies play a key role in navigating the next phase.
The Digital Imperative
Many of the clients we work with are feeling the pressure to adopt digital technologies and business models. They’ve seen how digital innovations can create advantages in new product development, customer service, and operations.
But they’ve also seen the threat posed by digital disruption. Not only from traditional competitors, but from new startups and tech giants who have the software platforms and new business models that could disrupt established leaders. They are right to be concerned. Digital is both creating and destroying value: since 2000, 52 percent of companies in the Fortune 500 have either gone bankrupt, been acquired, or otherwise ceased to exist as a result of digital disruption. (Source: HBR).
But it doesn’t have to be that way. Incumbents hold significant advantages, including brand reach, existing customer relationships, domain-specific data sets, and the ability to self-fund innovation. Combining these assets with the right digital strategies can enable established companies to fend off would-be digital disruptors and stay ahead of traditional competitors. The ability to leverage data and new digital technologies can create sustained advantage when it is aligned to business outcomes. Helping customers find those linkages is core to what we do.
Strategies for Digital Innovation
At many of the organizations we work with, leaders who want to pursue digital strategies that are truly transformative—as opposed to tactical—typically face two strategic questions:
- Where to focus first for maximum impact?
- And then, how to scale those initial digital wins to transform their operations and business models?
The answer to the question of where to focus first will differ depending on the unique requirements and objectives of each organization.
One approach is to focus on digital experience. Specifically, the digital experiences available to your customers, employees, suppliers, and partners. In other words, start with the people who matter most to your success.
Today’s digital innovators are creating more digital touchpoints to interact with customers than ever before. Multi-channel engagement models enable customers to learn, buy, and get help with products and services in the way that works best for them. For mobile employees such as field service teams, factory workers, and medical professionals, access to real-time information and interactions must be delivered in a way that is tailored to their work environments.
Smart spaces use technologies such as sensors, video, and lidar, to enhance the way people interact with retail stores, factories, hospitals, and public spaces. And connected, smart products can transform the way products are used, updated, and serviced throughout their life cycles.
Digital experiences are at the heart of being a digital business, but there are other opportunities for digital investments that can be transformative:
Drive Operations Excellence – Digital solutions are helping organizations optimize the efficiency, safety, and output of critical operations. Using analytics, automation, IoT and other technologies is transforming critical areas such as production, supply chain, customer service, and more.
Modernize Your Digital Core – A digital business needs an adaptive digital core – the applications and infrastructure that power their operations and customer interactions. Modernizing applications, implementing a cloud strategy that optimizes across cost and flexibility, and ensuring the performance and reliability of the underlying infrastructure across edge, data center, and cloud environments can deliver more agility to the business.
Become a Data-driven Organization – Being a digital leader means creating innovative business and operating models that are fueled by actionable insights from data. The right data platforms combined with a DataOps approach can provide a 360-degree view of customers, suppliers, and operations and deliver actionable insights from the factory floor to the C-Suite.
Accelerate Digital Innovation – Organizations with a history of successful innovation have a process for managing that innovation. Digital requires a repeatable systematic approach if it is to succeed at scale. Identifying the right organizational models, business models, and enterprise architectures and linking them to key business goals is key to success.
Scaling digital is about moving beyond POCs and science projects to true digital transformation at scale. Hitachi Vantara has the expertise, technology, and unique perspective to help organizations formulate and execute their own digital strategies. Go here to learn more about our consulting services and how they can help you on your own digital journey.