Enterprises in utility, telecom and retail industries are making more and more investments in digitalization and new technologies such as cloud computing, artificial intelligence and automation tools with the sole aim to maximize their business value, increase productivity and gain competitive advantages. The second disruptive trend changing the market environment and driving customer demands for companies is related to efficiency via technological advancements.
Trend 2: Efficiency Through Technology
Digital transformation is pushing businesses to reconsider their efficiency levels and how they are performing in terms of their processes, customer support, financial planning and the management of revenues, assets & resources. With the evolution of technology, data storage demands are increasing and new ways in which information is managed and secured are emerging. Striving to manage decreasing revenues and achieve operational excellence, distinguished organizations from these three industries are adopting new technologies and capabilities to optimize their workflow and automate core business processes. Some companies are exploring machine learning, artificial intelligence and augmented reality, while most are deploying other comprehensive monitoring and intelligence tools, to obtain real-time data and analytics, which will help them propel growth, get essential customer insights and increase loyalty.
Nowadays almost every business is talking about the potential of automation using blockchain technology and smart contracts. Currently, these factors are leading the way to completely new ecosystems and decentralized optimization of resources and control: improved supply chain visibility and product authenticity for retailers; secure IoT connectivity, identity verification and peer-to-peer payments for TelCos; efficient energy supply, pricing and trading for utilities. These technological opportunities are catalyzing information transparency and improving data management, thus helping reduce transaction costs.
“For many retail, telecom and utility enterprises business optimization and efficiency lies in the personalization of customer experience, recognizing different client buying models and reducing costs-to-serve. ”
Technological evolution is boosting productivity by increasing the collaboration between people from different locations and environments as well as the speed of information exchange inside and outside an organization. With the rise of internet and communication devices, such as smartphones and laptops, businesses can now make rapid decisions in seconds, reduce logistical costs and extend their resources across industries and markets with much fewer efforts then before. High-tech communication capabilities and the use of cloud services make working simultaneously on one or multiple projects from across the world an easy thing, as well as establishing shared networks across company departments for faster information flow and data transfer.
For many retail, telecom and utility enterprises business optimization and efficiency lies in the personalization of customer experience, recognizing different client buying models and reducing costs-to-serve. With the idea to create a personalized environment for their customers, self-service platforms were gradually introduced in these sectors and are now an integral part of every company’s client service activities. Empowering customers with complete control over their preferred and used products, such portals have become an efficient tool to reduce help desk costs, improve client relationships and optimize customer support processes. Collecting and understanding profound data related to customer purchasing behavior and patterns is essential in order to drive higher profits, sales and meticulous and timely supply chain management. Furthermore, artificial intelligence is growing more important to retailers every day, as it is actively helping big brands accurately forecast their merchandising needs and sales, so that consumers can have their favorite products available on display or delivered to their homes on time.
The customer experience and buying journey have been subject to dramatic changes, most of which are leading the way to higher efficiency levels for companies. The introduction of contactless payments, mobile payments, portable POS devices and self-checkout stations are helping retailers reduce the formation of queues, eliminate unnecessary hassles in stores and improve customer interactions and satisfaction levels. Mobile apps are becoming key to successful marketing and sales campaigns as they are helping stores keep constant contact with their target audiences: notify users on their preferred goods, purchases, product pricing, seasonal promotions and discounts. On the other hand, the emergence of augmented reality and its utilization in brand promotion is creating huge convenience and time saving for consumers not to visit stores physically in the future, as it eliminates the need of product testing and choosing goods on premises.