Challenges in technology to meet enterprise needs in 2014 and expectations
The digitalization will impact Daimler as much as the expansion into new markets and sustainability. To keep pace with the implementation of the technological trends like mobile, social, cloud, IT security, Big Data or analytics is challenging. With our program- Digital life@Daimler, we systematically explore the opportunities of mobile and social for our internal workspace, the relation to our customers, the impact on the products and new business opportunities in the area of mobility for people and goods. A real challenge is the integration of cloud services and on-premise solutions to better combine the advantages of scale effects for standardized services with in-house applications for core processes.
Areas in business environment where solutions do not yet exist
Most of the time, the pain points are not missing technology solutions, but to keep the balance of implementing available technologies at reasonable costs.
In traditional markets like Germany you are confronted with an existing proven IT landscape in the dealerships. We cannot just switch it off and replace it, at least not with a reasonable invest. Here we prefer the evolutionary way. But both ways follow one overall goal: to keep the number of IT solutions for redundant functions at a minimum.
"The increasing digitization has become a major driver of our innovations, particularly in the field of Car-IT"
Trends impacting enterprise business environment
The increasing digitization has become a major driver of our innovations, particularly in the field of Car-IT. Estimates show that by the year 2018 there will be 282 million connected cars. I am observing and actively driving that Daimler will make use of this potential. With respect to connectivity, we want to make car accessible from the internet and the other way round–to access different devices in your home out of the car, for example. We call it a “Digital Drive Style”. The mobile trend also impacts our business.
The role of CIOs today
Actually within my tenure I experienced a 180 degree shift. Starting in 2008 I ran directly into the financial crisis which hit the automotive industry very hard. IT was predominantly a cost position which was a target of brutal cost reductions.
today my team and I are invited to business meetings where we discuss business processes integration, customer experience and how we can support or enable business strategy by technical innovation.
My word for a CIO
It is not up to me to advice other CIOs as every company is different. In my company it is as simple as this: If I enter the office of my CEO and the production line is down because of an IT issue I will not find an open ear for how IT can change business strategy. Or a little bit more analytical it means that first I keep my systems up and running whenever business needs them.