Thursday, May 23, 2019

Using the World's Largest B2B Network to Make Commerce Easier

Global commerce can be incredibly complex and expensive for global buyers and sellers. In this episode, Etosha Thurman, Head of Global Business Network at SAP Ariba, shares the challenges and complexity of global buyers and sellers experience trying to transact business. She then explains the value of collaborating on SAP Ariba to improve efficiencies, processes and to spend more intelligently. Finally, she talks about the ability for buyers to discover sellers that offer products they need on SAP Ariba’s Discovery platform.

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Kevin Benedict
SVP Strategy, Regalix Inc.
Online TV Channel RegalixTV
Website Regalix Inc.
View my profile on LinkedIn
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the Linkedin Group Digital Intelligence

***Full Disclosure: These are my personal opinions. No company is silly enough to claim them. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Combining Experience and Operational Data for Full Situational Awareness

Throughout history military leaders have suffered through the “fog of war.” The desperation of not knowing information critical to success. Information as basic as:

1.    Where am I?

2.    Where are all my people?

3.    What are all my people doing?

4.    Where are my opponents?

5.    What are my opponents doing?

6.    Where are my friends?

7.    What are my friends doing?

8.    Where are my supplies?

9.    What capabilities will I have available, at different times and places?

10. What are the geographic and environmental conditions at each critical location?

The answers to these ten questions were/are critical for implementing the right strategies and tactics to win. Likewise, the absence of answers to these questions are equally impactful. Leaders spend enormous amounts of time and energy defending against all the possibilities represented by a lack of data. Think about a scenario of being lost in a dark forest at night with an unknown dangerous predator. Which direction would you face? How would you defend yourself? It is difficult in the best of times, but the absence of data can make it excruciating!

Leaders of the past could often be excused for making wrong decisions due to their lack of available data, but there are far less excuses today. Today in business the fog of war can largely be cleared with the combination of experience data and operational data.

Experience data is data collected on a customers’ experience interacting with your company, people, brand, product, services, websites, mobile apps, brick and mortar locations, business processes, etc. Experience data collected from thousands of customers and millions of interaction points provide leaders with a clear understanding of where they are succeeding and where they are failing customers, partners and even internal employees. Successes can be scaled, and failures reduced with experience data.

Operational data is data on the business much of which can be automatically produced, collected, analyzed and executed on automatically via ERPs and other systems and platforms. How many orders did we receive and for what products? Do we have all the right materials to manufacture the required products? Where are the materials located? When will they be delivered? Are the manufacturing plants operating efficiently? What equipment needs replaced and repaired. Where are my fleets of vehicles and service personnel? Data can be collected via sensor networks, automated data collection, GPS responders and through many other systems all of which produce data that leaders need in order to run an efficient and profitable business.

The combination of both experience (X) data and operational (O) data in near real-time from around the globe can provide insights and guidance for leaders never before available. Reducing the unknowns, frees leaders to focus on the knowns. This simple statement masks a revolution in leadership.

W. Edwards Deming, the father of quality improvement, once said, “The biggest problems are where people don’t realize they have one in the first place.” These “blind spots” – the unknown status of a customer experience, project, business process, schedule, delivery or available materials, for example – must be relegated to the past.

Today, we have the ability to remove conjecture and work with precise data. However, many companies have yet to evolve from legacy business models that were based on the “unknown and imprecise,” and continue following “estimate-based” models where unknowns are built into their plans. Others have yet to implement a comprehensive process for collecting and utilizing X and O data across their operations. As a result, these organizations have yet to update their strategies and tactics to support new business models and processes that take advantage of real-time X and O data-based precision. Ignoring today’s X and O data-based revolution" is hard to justify today.

This year, SAP CX has made X and O data their mantra.  Combining X and O data provides a complete situational awareness of your business.

Deming also said, “It is not necessary to change. Survival is not mandatory.” Today, taking advantage of the “known” is a must if surviving is in your plan.

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Kevin Benedict
SVP Strategy, Regalix Inc.
Online TV Channel RegalixTV
Website Regalix Inc.
View my profile on LinkedIn
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the Linkedin Group Digital Intelligence

***Full Disclosure: These are my personal opinions. No company is silly enough to claim them. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Monday, April 22, 2019

Operating the World’s Largest B2B Network with James Lee, COO, SAP Ariba and Fieldglass

In this interview I take a deep dive with SAP Ariba's COO, James Lee, and learn what it is like to manage the world’s largest B2B business network. We discuss the analytics, business dashboards and management tools he uses, how he organizes his day, and whether he files every email or lets them accumulate in his Inbox. We drill down into the value proposition of SAP Ariba and Fieldglass, their 2019 focus and the upcoming SAP Ariba and Fieldglass conference coming up June 4-6.

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Kevin Benedict
SVP Strategy, Regalix Inc.
Online TV Channel RegalixTV
Website Regalix Inc.
View my profile on LinkedIn
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the Linkedin Group Digital Intelligence

***Full Disclosure: These are my personal opinions. No company is silly enough to claim them. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

A Deep Dive Interview with SAP Ariba's Gretchen Eischen

In this interview recorded at SAP Ariba Live, I have the pleasure of sitting down with and learning from Gretchen Eischen, SAP Ariba’s VP of Corporate Marketing. She gives us a behind the scenes views into what it takes to organize and manage large event’s like SAP Ariba Live, and discusses SAP Ariba’s focus for 2019. We also take a deep dive into what is really meant by the term intelligent spend, and how spend-choices can be used for global good.



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Kevin Benedict
SVP Strategy, Regalix Inc.
Online TV Channel RegalixTV
Website Regalix Inc.
View my profile on LinkedIn
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the Linkedin Group Digital Intelligence

***Full Disclosure: These are my personal opinions. No company is silly enough to claim them. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Tuesday, April 09, 2019

Customer Experience a Digital Winner's 2019 Playbook

Winners know how the game is played. When rules change, so do their game plans. In this article I have created a customer experience playbook on what it will take to win in 2019.

1. Information dominance is a key goal. Throughout history conquerors gained by capturing territories, bridges, resources and key cities. Today’s conquerors gain with data insights that can be applied to customer experience.

2. Combinatorial data is key to understand customer experience. Data gathered from many different sources then combined and analyzed will provide unique insights into patterns, activities and behaviors invisible to competitors without.

3. Operational blind spots are a minefield for businesses. Blind spots must quickly be replaced with visibility through all kinds of data capture - automated data capture, surveys, digitization, sensors and RPA (robotic process automation).

4. It takes an “Optimized Information Logistics Systems” (OILS) to compete today. Friction in data movement and antiquated processes must be removed to support real-time digital and mobile interactions with customers. Winners combine more sources of data to optimize customer experiences, which requires more data processing and optimization to be effective.

5. In the experience economy - advantages in speed, operational tempos, process automation, analytics and information logistics are massive competitive advantages when utilized for customer experiences.

6. Businesses that can “analyze data, uncover insights, automate decision-making and execute with speed” will soon dominate those that are slower.

7. Future-time operational tempos are required to compete successfully in customer experience. Future-time support predicts future actions, events, needs, preferences and requirements and makes recommendations that can be acted upon in a moment.

8. Advantages lead to more advantages (Ax2). When you have the advantage of being out front with new innovations, products, services, experiences, etc., you can collect and analyze data not yet available and visible to followers. That 2nd advantage in Ax2, is that you can make decisions and take actions that followers cannot yet anticipate or understand.  Advantages lead to new advantages.

9. Accurately understanding reality faster than a competitor can enables organizations to eliminate inefficiencies and operate at a lower cost, and with increased productivity. Visibility enables actions to be taken based on fact rather than guesswork, incorrect assumptions and conjecture, saving time, resources, opportunity costs, bandwidth and money.

10. As digital interactions increase between customers, vendors, suppliers and partners - so too will the demand for more and faster digital processes, expanded digital services, more data visibility and better digital user experiences. It is a digital transformation avalanche. The sooner organizations understand this unstoppable reality the more prepared and competitive they can be.

11. Digital experiences can only be as good as the philosophies, designs, systems and data behind them.

12. Processes are only as good as the people, data, systems and algorithms involved.

13. The more data and data sources that are captured and analyzed, the greater the accuracy of analysis, which equates to greater economic value to the organization.

14. Data has a shelf life, and the economic value of data diminishes quickly over time, so organizations must be agile and nimble enough to capture the value immediately.

15. The economic value of information multiplies when combined with real-time context, right-time delivery, association with specific processes, and the capability to respond instantly.

16. Winners will operate an agile business that can align with fast changing customer behaviors and desires - faster than their competitors.

17. Winners will capture and understand the true actions, desires, feelings and attitudes of their customers and prospects better than their competitors.

18. Winners will have leadership teams, organizations, culture and technology platforms that allow them to respond to new data faster than their competitors.

19. Ultimately economic winners in 2019 will be those that can innovate by offering personalized and frictionless business where friction previously existed. They will deliver incredible user experiences; automate decision-making based on capturing the right data, excite customer loyalty and execute better and faster than competitors through the implementation of artificial intelligence, machine learning and automation.

These rules not only help organizations to understand how to compete and win, but they can help enterprises develop their digital transformation doctrine. Why is a doctrine important? In a large survey we conducted a few years back, the participants identified the need for a clear digital transformation strategy as critical to success. Digital transformation strategies grow out of and are shaped by first having a digital transformation doctrine (DTD).

We define doctrine as a documented way of thinking, a common frame of reference across an organization, which provides an authoritative body of statements on how the businesses should approach digital transformation. It provides a common lexicon for use and a framework for developing strategies. The DTD is a necessary first step before digital transformation strategies and tactics can be developed and implemented.

Digital technologies do not just enhance and extend existing processes and models, but they open doors to all kinds of new innovations, opportunities, businesses processes, business models, strategies and even new industries. An organization’s DTD must be capable of leading them successfully through these massive and accelerating changes.

An organization’s DTD should influence all their strategies, how they operate, and the tactics they employ to compete. In our research, we found most companies recognize digital transformation is happening, but few have a guiding doctrine to lead them through this chaotic journey.

Without a DTD, organizations lack a unified understanding of why they are engaged in digital transformation and the role transformation plays in helping them compete successfully.

Executive teams must determine how their organization should think about and respond to digital transformation. The DTD should be front and center in every program, project, campaign, product and service within the company. An example of a DTD follows:

The digital transformation of our marketplace is changing the behaviors of our customers and the nature of our competition. We must anticipate and embrace permanent flux by employing digital technologies and strategies, and by creating an agile business and a digitally-transformed enterprise. We will achieve information dominance by investing appropriately to develop and maintain an optimized information logistics system. We will restructure our organizations for business agility, speed and real-time decision-making. We will develop a culture that encourages collaboration, innovation, speed and creativity. We will embrace the concept that no matter what products and services we offer, our customers’ experience is our true product.

Watch my online TV channel about leaders and for leaders, Deep Dive with Kevin Benedict on Regalix.TV.

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Kevin Benedict
SVP Strategy, Regalix Inc.
Online TV Channel RegalixTV
Website Regalix Inc.
View my profile on LinkedIn
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the Linkedin Group Digital Intelligence

***Full Disclosure: These are my personal opinions. No company is silly enough to claim them. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Customer Success Strategies with VMware's Mason Uyeda, Senior Director of Customer Success

In the words of Mason Uyeda, his job is to “Make users more productive, satisfied and efficient.” Today, customers have higher expectations, they subscribe instead of purchase, and they all want their experiences as simple as their mobile apps. This takes a lot of work, data, analysis, understanding, focus and ambition. In this interview, we take a deep dive into how this all works at VMware.

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Kevin Benedict
SVP Strategy, Regalix Inc.
Online TV Channel RegalixTV
Website Regalix Inc.
View my profile on LinkedIn
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the Linkedin Group Digital Intelligence

***Full Disclosure: These are my personal opinions. No company is silly enough to claim them. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Monday, March 11, 2019

Marketing Insights and the Battle Against Cyber Evil with Vasu Jakkal, CMO, FireEye

Vasu Jakkal, CMO of FireEye, shares her insights from the frontlines of the battle against cyber villains, and also her experiences and strategies marketing the solutions and services developed to protect democracy and the global digital economy.

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Kevin Benedict
SVP Strategy, Regalix Inc.
Online TV Channel RegalixTV
Website Regalix Inc.
View my profile on LinkedIn
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the Linkedin Group Digital Intelligence

***Full Disclosure: These are my personal opinions. No company is silly enough to claim them. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Distributed Ledgers Technologies & the Future with Christian Hasker, CMO, Hedera Hashgraph

In this episode, we take a deep dive into DLT (distributed ledger technologies) with expert Christian Hasker, CMO of Hedera Hashgraph. Christian explains the potential impact that DTLs are and will have on a wide variety of industries, education, entertainment, healthcare and fake news.

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Kevin Benedict
SVP Strategy, Regalix Inc.
Online TV Channel RegalixTV
Website Regalix Inc.
View my profile on LinkedIn
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the Linkedin Group Digital Intelligence

***Full Disclosure: These are my personal opinions. No company is silly enough to claim them. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Using AI to Monitor and Reduce Industrial Waste with Gail Moody-Byrd, CMO of Noodle.ai

In this episode, we speak with Gail Moody-Byrd, CMO of Noodle.ai about their artificial intelligence solutions designed specifically for enterprise AI. Noodle.ai’s solutions monitor and reduce industrial waste in manufacturing and in supply chains which result in radical efficiencies. In addition, we discuss how enterprises must ensure their data is ready before algorithms can be utilized effectively on the data. Noodle.ai has nine questions they ask their customers before engaging with them to ensure they are ready.

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Kevin Benedict
SVP Strategy, Regalix Inc.
Website Regalix Inc.
View my profile on LinkedIn
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the Linkedin Group Digital Intelligence
Join the Google+ Community Mobile Enterprise Strategies

***Full Disclosure: These are my personal opinions. No company is silly enough to claim them. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

My Interview with RAF Air Commodore John Wariner on Digital Transformation

In this special interview, I am honored to have as my guest John Wariner, Air Commodore for the Royal Air Force. John has served 36-years in the RAF and has seen and experienced incredible changes, served in both Afghanistan and Iraq, and led digital transformation initiatives involving tens of thousands of users. In this delightful interview, we dig deep into organizational changes, agile operations, military strategies, and running an IT organization from tents in combat zones in the desert.

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Kevin Benedict
SVP Solutions Strategy, Regalix Inc.
Website Regalix Inc.
View my profile on LinkedIn
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the Linkedin Group Digital Intelligence
***Full Disclosure: These are my personal opinions. No company is silly enough to claim them. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.