The term “disruption” conjures the fear of dilution, alteration, and disturbance for many global businesses – and for good reason. The world is becoming more hyperconnected, and as a result, disruption is quickly becoming a permanent fixture. Yet according to a recent study conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit, 80% of executives view hyperconnectivity positively, indicating that it presents more opportunities than threats.
In consumer markets, buyers are steadily disrupting everything a business touches, making it a challenge to remain competitive. So what should these businesses do? Their only choice is to look beyond the competition and find disruptive opportunities.
Connecting to the pulse of the consumer
Not that long ago, most businesses followed a one-time transaction model. They would manufacture the product and ship it to the retailer, and consumers would purchase it. However, hyperconnectivity has changed the rules, making this experience a distant memory.
Consumers now are more connected to information and are no longer interested in listening to corporate rhetoric or a canned sales pitch. The Internet is giving consumers more power and putting them in a position to guide the buying conversation and dictate future product and service offerings.
From this perspective, it is easy to see that hyperconnectivity and its impact on social behavior are foundational disruptors. Haier Asia, a top-ranking multinational consumer electronics and home appliances company, is one of those few companies that quickly recognized how hyperconnectivity is fueling consumer-based disruption.
“When you look around, no consumer business is making money,” said Yoshiaki Ito, president and CEO of Haier Asia. “Why is that? Because the margins are so slim. Consumers are far, far faster than manufacturers because they are getting new information on a daily basis. In the meantime, traditional companies produce their products but it’s taking 24 months. So the gap is just widening every second.”
It’s time to disrupt
Instead of surrendering to these challenges, Haier decided to disrupt itself and the market it serves. With a two-prong approach to digital transformation, the company created a service-based model to seize the potential of new consumer behaviors and accelerate its product development cycles.
“My strategy for Haier Asia is to double up the digital platform,” says Ito. “This is a great opportunity to bring us to the next level by becoming a services provider and gaining a steady stream of new revenue.”
How can you lead a digital transformation in your industry? Haier tapped into the ever-changing signals that surround the company and connected them to faster development cycles. They reorganized to deliver seamless, connected, data-driven experiences that customers expect in this digital economy. This degree of responsiveness allows them to “sense” the world around them, essentially becoming a Live Business.
A Live Business can help connect employees, customers, suppliers, partners, and assets into a fluid, real-time digital business. Usually, these areas are serviced by different enterprise solutions making them run as silos. But in the digital economy, these components are set for disruption and you cannot afford to operate them separately. A Live Business is tuned to the new era of hyperconnectivity and is your pathway to success in the digital economy.
Hyperconnectivity, with strategies like Haier’s, can indeed present more opportunities than threats. Are you ready to take advantage of hyperconnectivity and disrupt your business?
Learn more about Digitizing IT and How Digitization Helps Companies Be Live Businesses.
This article is modified from the original version that appeared on SAP Business Trends community.Comments