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If your business could have a ‘Super Power’, what would you choose?

If your business could have a Super Power what would you choose

Fantasy seems to be the film genre of the moment. The top box office films of 2017 have so far all been variations on the genre and half of these are super hero films – from Wonder Woman to Guardians of the Galaxy to Spider Man. I wonder if it is a sign of the times that people are turning to escapism more than ever. With so much turmoil going on around us, do we secretly hanker for the ability to defy evil with super powers of our own?

Now shovelling popcorn, immersed in the super hero battles of the DC and Marvel universes might seem about as far removed from the gritty, every day realities of business as you could get. But at this year’s Fujitsu World Tour, we let our customers’ imaginations run riot. We asked them: if you could choose a Super Power for your business, what would that be?

In fact this was not all we asked them, and more of this in a minute. The theme of the event was ‘Digital Co-creation’. Simply this means using the power of working together, and digital technologies to deliver innovation and transformational outcomes for businesses. In the spirit of co-creation, different audiences across Europe provided their own perspectives throughout the keynotes via voting buttons.

Of the Super Powers to choose from, it turned out nearly half of our audience members (47%) wanted the ability to ‘see into the future’. Meanwhile 20% wished that they could ‘always make the right decision’ and another 20% to be able to ‘read their customers minds’. And 10% wished for ‘immunity from all risks and threats’. What would you choose?

Through the sessions our customers provided other insights of their own. How far they were engaged in digital, for instance. Two thirds were already running digital programmes with 43% implementing digital transformation, and 23% running digital proof of concepts. Just under a fifth were just planning for digital. A suitably satisfied 13% believed they were already fully digital. Only 2% were not doing anything at all.

The vast majority of our customers saw digital as transformational to their business sectors. 40% thought digital would either deliver fundamental change or render the sector unrecognizable in five years. This finding may seem dramatic but was in line with what Fujitsu’s ‘Fit for Digital’ research revealed last year. Only 11% thought digital would cause either small changes to their business sector or none at all.

Of the challenges that digital brings, security and data protection was consistently named, in country after country, as the top hurdle to overcome. 44% of the audiences cited this. But equally consistently, the second placed challenge for 27% was cultural and the fear of change

Over the course of the keynote, the audiences heard stories of how Fujitsu and our customers are digitally co-creating. Like the San Carlos Hospital in Madrid, where we have been using machine learning to deliver faster clinical assessments of patients, or Inesa Group in China, where we have worked together to create a smart factory with a walk through digital dashboard. Or S Group in Finland, where we developed a digital experience for customers of their fuel stations, fully integrated into their business systems.

The Super Powers topic led to some interesting discussions and not a little mirth in the break outs and drinks. But there was a serious point behind it. What Joseph Reger, Fujitsu’s CTO for our European region, was building up to in the keynote was that while of course ‘Super Powers’ was not a phrase you would expect to hear in regular business language, outcomes like ‘improved decision making’, ‘better customer insights’, ‘predictive power’ or ‘protection from security threats’ are what all businesses are striving for.

What’s more, new digital technologies – from machine learning to the Internet of Things – are enabling these very outcomes, and which can transform businesses in ways that would have been unthinkable.

Now digital transformation as we know is not as easy as diving into a phone booth and donning a super suit, but the impact of it might just be as marked as the difference between Superman and Clark Kent. And key to achieving this – Joseph Reger’s final point – was that it required a shared approach between business and technology partners to realise these incredible new capabilities. In other words, digital co-creation.

Appendix

Data (from events in Stockholm, Helsinki, Warsaw, Lisbon and London)

If you could choose a super power for your business, what would it be?

See into the future 46.8%
Read your customer’s minds 20.7%
Always make the best decision 20.5%
Immunity to risks and threats 8.5%
X-Ray vision of everything in your organization 3.5%

Will your sector be digitally disrupted over the next 5 years?

Yes, it will change in specific areas 40.1%
Yes, it will change fundamentally 38.6%
Yes, it will become unrecognizable 10.4%
There may be some small changes 6.5%
No, it will not change at all 4.3%

How engaged is your organisation in Digital?

Implementing Digital Transformation 43.3%
Running proof of concepts in Digital 22.8%
Planning for Digital 18.2%
We are fully Digital 13.0%
Not engaged in Digital 2.6%

What are you most worried about with Digital?

Security threats / compromising company or customer data 44.2%
Internal culture / fear for change 27.1%
Finding people with the right skills 10.5%
Complexity 9.8%
I am not worried about Digital 8.4%

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