As the world becomes more digitized, new forms of business are emerging. Many companies are seeking ways to free themselves from their existing businesses, but how should they digitize their businesses? This conference discussed advanced case studies and future business models enabled by digital transformation.
[Fujitsu Forum 2017 Presentation Report]
The State of Companies' Digital Transformation and Advanced Case Studies
The conference's first half consisted of presentations on the states of various companies' digital transformations and advanced case studies.
Driving Digital Transformation
"In February 2017, Fujitsu conducted a global digital transformation survey among business leaders. The survey results indicated that 68% of business leaders acknowledged that their organizations are 'implementing, testing, or planning digital transformation.' Among digital transformation focus areas, 'marketing' is the top functional area followed by 'operation and maintenance' and 'work styles.'
"We at Fujitsu have been actively driving digital transformation. We already migrated 263 systems, approximately 30% of our 850 internal systems in Japan, to a cloud platform. We have also deployed 40 AI projects in areas as diverse as call centers, manufacturing, and security operations. Meanwhile, we are promoting work style innovation, including official implementation of a telework system for 35,000 employees that began in April.
"In response to customer needs for digitization, Fujitsu has launched an innovation project to improve customer-facing functions and has promoted changes in human resources, processes, digital tools, and so forth. This project is being carried out with support from salesforce.com, where we held a workshop based on salesforce.com's design thinking program 'Ignite.' There are limits as to what one company can do in the age of digitization, so Fujitsu aims to achieve the business transformation customers demand by making use of technologies while collaborating with salesforce.com, a leading digital business company."
"The Age of the Customer" Accelerates Digital Transformation
"With the spread of the Internet and the advance of mobile computing, everything is now connected to the Internet. It is important to remember that there are always customers on the ends of the things connected, so the key to success in future businesses is to smartly connect with customers and better understand them.
"Companies have enormous amounts of customer data, but in reality, most precious data is not utilized. One report stated that less than 1% of customer data is properly analyzed. Meanwhile, customers are also unable to feel that they are closely connected to specific companies or product brands, despite various means of connection, such as mobile devices and social networks. Some data indicates that as many as 77% of customers cannot feel connections with companies. Filling in such gaps has become an important corporate strategy.
"In automobile sales in the United States, the number of customer visits to car dealers to gather information before making a purchasing decision, which had previously been 7.5 times, has dropped to 1.5 times recently because customers collect information from companies' websites and other sources as well as exchange information with each other through social networks and so forth before visiting a dealer. As a result, skills required for dealers change, including skills to propose finance plans. This is a typical case in which taking the initiative in obtaining information has moved from companies to customers.
"From 'the Age of the Company' to 'the Age of the Customer' -- in this age of change, all industries must achieve digital transformation. In an era in which customers' digitization surpasses that of companies, salesforce.com wants to support companies that take on the challenge of transformation by offering a framework for digital transformation as well as customer-facing platforms.
"Here, I would like to introduce a case study of digital transformation at the Coca-Cola Company, which is using Ignite to develop a vision for digital transformation. Ignite is a design thinking program uniquely developed by salesforce.com that helps businesses design their visions and execution roadmaps. In the first stage, business transformation themes are clarified through interviews with executives and multiple department heads; in the next stage, a transformation vision is developed through workshops. In the final stage, prototypes are created to execute the vision, and business roadmaps are visualized to achieve speedy transformation."
Two Case Studies on Digital Transformation Achieved by Co-creation
"I would like to talk about two co-creation case studies. One concerns collaboration with salesforce.com in Fujitsu's own digitization, while the other is about digitization of a customer's business.
"First, I will talk about our co-creation with salesforce.com. Before undergoing Ignite workshops, Fujitsu's Sales/SE Units identified problems with response speed for customers, proposals on digital transformation for businesses, and organizational silos. By repeatedly attending workshops, the path to solving these problems became clear, and we also obtained heretofore unknown insights into Fujitsu's strengths, including our capability of grasping the essence from a field-level perspective, the power of technological integration, and our potential power in team competitions. Based on these insights, we resolved to take actions to upgrade our information platform so that we can share customers' issues and needs in a timely manner and to innovate our internal marketing methods by taking full advantage of Fujitsu's comprehensive capabilities in order to further drive customer contact digital transformation.
"Next, I would like to introduce a case study of our customer KOMORI Corporation, which is a printing machine manufacturer whose mission is to lead client printing companies to success in their businesses. KOMORI Corporation's challenge has been to increase the number of customer contacts by integrating IoT with CRM to transform its sales approach from 'sales of things' to 'sales of services.' Fujitsu provided expertise and knowledge about commercializing a service business at a manufacturing company and proposed digital transformation by utilizing the salesforce cloud platform to visualize the usage statuses of printing companies' equipment.
"In this case, I believe that we at Fujitsu could help KOMORI Corporation derive their essential needs by working together with them, placing ourselves in the position of their clients. Fujitsu will continue to work on digital transformation hand-in-hand with our customers as their business partner."
How to Handle Digital Transformation
The conference's second half took the form of a panel discussion with salesforce.com's Chikara Teshima and Fujitsu Limited's Hironobu Mizuno as panelists and Koichi Sakai from Nikkei Business Publications, Inc. as moderator. During the discussion, Mr. Sakai asked one-or-the-other questions related to the agendas of customers in the hall, who answered by raising a red or white sheet of paper distributed in advance. The panelists and moderator continued the discussion based on the actual situation indicated by customers in the hall.
Customer-oriented Approach Necessary to Resolve Issues
At the start of the panel discussion, Mr. Teshima said, "Salesforce is a company that aims to continue to innovate itself. I myself do more than 70% of my daily work using mobile devices."
Before engaging in marketing, Mizuno worked many years doing sales for customers in the manufacturing industry. He summarized his impressions as follows: "At the time, I had continued taking a co-creation approach for customers, but I did not notice that the speed of customers' changes had accelerated. In recent years, as mobile usage became commonplace and IT itself became more sophisticated, more customers now clearly identify challenges in digitization."
Many customers in a position to tackle digital transformation participated in the conference. "Indeed, the number of companies that work on digital transformation is increasing, but many companies worry about which steps they should take to proceed. Since it is difficult to transform critical operations right from the beginning, we recommend first digitizing simple daily operations to feel the effects of improvement. We can provide meaningful proposals to customers only after taking such steps." (Teshima)
Mizuno listed the following reasons why digitization does not proceed smoothly: (1) personnel and organizational problems, such as a lack of design thinking and workshop skills as well as organizational silos that hinder information sharing; (2) operational and process-related problems, such as knowledge being limited to each business unit and a lack of a big picture; and (3) ICT- and system-related problems, such as a lack of real-time data collection systems. Mizuno concluded the conference by saying that to solve such problems, it is very important to create a mechanism that encourages data utilization in a customer-oriented manner.
Hiroyuki Sakai Corporate Executive Officer
EVP, Head of Global Marketing
Shinichi Koide Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer,
salesforce.com Co., Ltd.
Hironobu Mizuno General Manager,
Offering Promotion Headquarters,
Koichi Sakai Assistant Group Publisher
Business Media Group
Nikkei Business Publications, Inc.
Chikara Teshima Vice President,
Japan Alliances & GTM Innovation,
salesforce.com Co., Ltd.