Unlocking the power of digital transformation requires new ways of doing business that are fundamentally different from traditional methods. Evolving a business model to take advantage of digital trends is challenging because it’s often impossible to understand what can be done without having seen it first.
Like traditional brick‐and‐mortar retailers in the early days of the Internet that had no idea of how to create an online shopping experience, organizations today must develop innovative business models and processes to leverage modern digital technologies and trends.
Organizations, like Amazon and eBay, that were born in the Internet era disrupted these traditional brick‐and‐mortar industries. Some organizations adapted quickly and remained competitive, while others did not and struggled to remain viable. Today, the Internet is pervasive and integrated into everything we do.
Digitization will follow a similar path and eventually become woven into the fabric of our daily lives. The first step in this journey is to understand what’s possible.
In the following sections, you examine a few real‐world scenarios of digital business transformation.
NCR’s Interactive ATM: The fortune (well, cash) teller of the future?
The NCR Interactive Teller enables banks to offer customers the benefits of self‐service banking and full‐service banking through a single experience. The ATM combines video collaboration and remote transaction processing to let customers start with a traditional ATM experience and then connect with a remote teller in a highly personalized, two‐way audio/video interaction.
The shift to digital banking dispels the notion that physical branches with on‐site employees are a necessity.
Today, branches can be anywhere and everywhere. Virtual teller ATMs advance the concept of an ATM by allowing human interactions through video when a customer desires. This obviates the need for a human bank teller to be present.
In this scenario, customers can still make loan and credit card payments and access information by scanning a government ID, even if they don’t have a bank card. The virtual model creates new business models, enabling banking services to be conducted in more locations.
Rebecca Minkoff’s digital mirror: Mirror, mirror on my digital wall
Fashion designer Rebecca Minkoff has created an entirely new approach to the retail experience by integrating technology into the in‐store shopping experience.
Stores have been outfitted with interactive mirrors that greet the shopper and invite them to approach. After customers tap the screen, they’re offered a free beverage and a few pieces of clothing to try on. Shoppers can browse the inventory and select other items as well.
After a product is chosen, a store employee delivers the item to a dressing room and texts the customer to let him/her know the fitting room is ready. While in the dressing room, customers can request different sizes and new clothing, and they can place the items they want to purchase in a virtual cart.
When customers are finished, they can review all the items in a mobile application, pay for them, and pick them up on the way out.
The retail industry will experience some of the biggest impacts from digital transformation. One digital technology that will change the shopping experience is the use of augmented reality (AR) to improve online shopping by delivering a virtual “in-store” experience from a customer’s home.
With more and more consumers turning to online shopping, it’s becoming increasingly important for businesses to offer an innovative digital customer experience in order to stand out from the competition, boost customer satisfaction, and build brand loyalty.
Digital transformation will radically change the manufacturing industry. Consumers will be able to customize or even design their own products using a combination of additive manufacturing (AM) and three‐dimensional (3D) printing.
“Smart manufacturing” will leverage the Internet of Things (IoT) to let equipment and machines communicate with one another with minimal human intervention, improving efficiency and productivity.
Smart manufacturing benefits include:
• Shorter lead times
• Improved quality
• Reduced waste
• Increased flexibility
• Significant cost savings
John Lewis 3D “sofa studio”
John Lewis, the UK department store, is using 3D printing technology to change the in‐store customer experience. The company has combined 3D printing with radio‐frequency identification (RFID) tagging to help customers choose new sofas.
The interactive “sofa studio” enables customers to choose from a wide variety of 3D‐printed sofa models to see what an item will look like. The sofa is then placed on a “smart table” that detects the RFID tag to show the item on a computer screen.
A fabric swatch can then be placed next to the smart table, and a mockup of the finished product will appear on a screen. As customers choose different fabrics, the on‐screen product will change in real time.