The Secret Behind A Successful Journey Toward The Intelligent Enterprise

Michael Kleinemeier

Part 1 of the “The Secret Behind the Intelligent Enterprise” series

The way the world has evolved over the past decade is nothing short of remarkable, much of which we can contribute to digitalization. Brands and their consumers are engaged in a digital marketplace that is personal, responsive, and collaborative. This influences entirely new business models, which are enhancing operational efficiency and bringing value-added services in ways never thought possible, even a year ago. The speed of technology innovation and delivery is bringing us all to a critical moment of intense change. The time has come to harvest the fertile ground of technological innovation and introduce intelligent business models and processes to raise the bar on our experiences at work, home, and everywhere in between.

Shifting the business paradigm to the intelligent enterprise

The imagination is the only limit to innovation, and intelligent technologies, inherent in the design and application of digital business processes, will continue to drive enormous momentum in realizing differentiating business opportunities. Those who face and embrace the challenges coming with the speed and power of technology will be most likely to overcome.

Warehousing has already stepped up to leverage data intelligence, running automation algorithms that process rule-based decision-making to trigger predefined actions. This fuels surprising speed and accuracy in the autonomy available in robots and drones that pull and pack products. This innovation ensures that the flow from the stock shelf to the shipping box is undisrupted and error-free.

While such outcomes are genuinely astonishing, such industry success stories are a testament to the importance in having a trusted partnership between businesses and their technology providers. Only together will they be able to completely renovate existing business processes to achieve exceptional business outcomes. Recent research indicates that 55% of organizations rate their alignment between IT and business needs as moderate or worse, which means there is much potential for change.

Inspiring sustainable, intelligent transformation with a business-first approach

Companies often create excellent plans for establishing more intelligent ways to work. But without the digital capabilities and expertise, businesses cannot realize the full promise of their innovative practices.

A critical factor in successful digital initiatives is a preliminary review of multiple aspects of business operations – such as talent management, organizational structure, supplier networks, products and services, and customer demand. This exercise gives executives and organizational leaders the freedom to determine which changes should be made and which capabilities should be acquired from an overall corporate perspective.

By setting business priorities first, decision-makers and stakeholders are able to define more tangible outcomes while incorporating the technologies best fit to support their plans. This approach towards an end-to-end, strategic, long-term engagement accelerates the transition into an intelligent enterprise. Plus, it sets the stage for the innovation of new business models that attract and retain customers and employees while creating new markets and revenue streams.

Along the way, intelligent technologies will continue to progress in efficiently measuring and analyzing results, nurturing the appetites of organizations to fully understand the progress of their digital initiatives and how impactful they are across the business network and customer base. For example, financial services organizations are already shifting their business models from complex transaction processing towards more customer-friendly and context-related processing. There is great value in having IT services that optimize core functions and support leading-edge business models.

Driving the journey to the intelligent enterprise with digital transformation

We are in an era where the concept of digital transformation is being pushed unrelentingly to the point where limits no longer exist. For businesses that are not yet undergoing active digital transformation initiatives, the prospect of catching up with their digitally mature competitors is challenging. But it’s not impossible.

I have seen firsthand how the right mix of technologies, services, support, and expertise can empower businesses to implement agile practices to stay ahead of their competition. Over time, our customers develop a progressive, long-range view of every digital initiative and continuous, never-ending customer engagement. But more importantly, businesses can accomplish a resilience to change that can keep them on track with continuous success.

Get real-world secrets of businesses that are successfully transforming themselves into intelligent enterprises. We invite you to bookmark our series landing page “The Secret Behind the Intelligent Enterprise” and check it every week for new insights and best practices.


Michael Kleinemeier

About Michael Kleinemeier

Michael Kleinemeier is a member of the SAP Executive Board of SAP SE, leading the SAP Digital Business Services organization.