Tracking the Maturation of “The Intelligent Enterprise”
For two days, representatives from GE, Target, Whirlpool, Zebra Technologies, Google, IBM, Accenture, NFL, City of Boston, MIT and Harvard, as well as many other leading companies participated in a series of intensive sessions to explore the many different ways that the concept of “The Intelligent Enterprise” could be harnessed to drive business success and benefit society. But we needed a way to monitor and measure the outcomes of those discussions.
In 2017, Zebra conducted a baseline survey of companies spanning healthcare, manufacturing, retail and transportation and logistics to conceptionally understand where companies are on the path to becoming an Intelligent Enterprise. In total, 908 IT decision makers from nine countries were interviewed, including the U.S., U.K./Great Britain, France, Germany, Mexico, Brazil, China, India, and Australia/New Zealand. The inaugural “Intelligent Enterprise Index” released in November 2017 revealed that forty-eight percent were on the path to becoming intelligent enterprises:
- IoT vision was strong and investment was set to increase.
- Customer experience was driving IoT.
- Business engagement was top of mind, but culture needed to be given more consideration.
- Many companies were lacking an adoption plan to combat resistance to their IoT solutions.
- Companies were keeping employees informed of their innovation, but there was room for more communication.
Fast forward a year, and the number of companies defined as an “intelligent enterprise” had doubled to 10 percent. The 2018 Intelligent Enterprise Index also showed strong momentum among other global companies striving to achieve that top status:
- IoT investment was now up, and resistance to adoption was down.
- Enterprises were increasingly driving a performance edge with real-time guidance.
- Security had become a top priority across the enterprise.
- Companies started to demonstrate a greater reliance on a solution ecosystem.
Though we’ll have to wait a few more months to re-assess the impact of continued IoT-based innovation, it is clear that those two days at Harvard in 2016 were vital to jump-starting the impressive progress we’re making today toward the creation of a new global “Intelligent Enterprise” standard.