Harnessing the Power of Collaboration to Advance the Digital Transformation of Industry

April 1, 2019 Jean-Pascal Tricoire

Industrial markets are experiencing rapid change brought on by accelerated digitization and new technologies such as IoT, data analysis, and artificial intelligence (AI). Traditional industry boundaries are blurring at speed. Everyone is reimagining ways to design, build, and deliver products and services to customers and work with partners. How to solve specific business problems, while meeting rising customer expectations for greater customization and fast response? The answer lies in dynamic collaboration that can truly push forward the digital transformation of industry, new business models, and sustainable progress.

Business as usual simply won’t work in the Industry 4.0 economy. The hyper-connected world is too fast. We need a new approach — one that promises speed, agility, and the ability to see and address customer problems in a better way.

Our solution is Schneider Electric Exchange, a business platform and digital ecosystem that drives worldwide economies of scale for IIoT solutions. It is the way to transform your business and thrive in the digital economy, whether you’re a startup, a long-time system integrator, a digital plant operator, or a design office. As McKinsey points out, “By 2025, digital ecosystems could account for about 30% of global corporate revenue.”[i]

We’ve done the groundwork: as I announced at Hannover Messe, we are empowering a digital ecosystem that co-innovates solutions to address the world’s pressing efficiency and sustainability challenges, and we welcome you to join us.

At the nexus of old and new: build up, grow fast

At Schneider, we are committed to unleashing the infinite possibilities and bold ideas of an open, global, innovative community. As the world’s first cross-industry open ecosystem, Schneider Electric Exchange takes our long-time extended enterprise innovation to another level by allowing everyone to create, collaborate, and scale relevant business solutions across industry boundaries. As we know that no company can work in a silo to advance real change. Technology resources, public and private communities, and a digital marketplace — accessible at the same time — bring together a personalized experience with the collective intelligence of an open community of solvers, passionate about energy and process automation.

Where is the differentiating value? For technology companies, where the ability to scale can make or break a proof of concept, the community platform empowers you to broaden your geographic and market reach. For system integrators, it connects you quickly to technical resources in a digital workspace. For design offices, you can access reference designs for energy-efficient buildings. For plant and facility managers, you can qualify partners to begin work immediately.

Such a robust industrial ecosystem brings forward a new way to work by fundamentally shifting the mindset from single companies building technology to a diverse crowd focused on quickly solving real-world efficiency and sustainability challenges, by looking at them from multiple vantage points in a collaborative way.

This is the value of Schneider Electric Exchange’s dynamic community of problem solvers for the Industry 4.0 economy.

For industrial enterprises looking for more productivity and more sustainability, the platform simply brings a vast array of solutions (through connectivity, transparency, traceability, data sharing and management, the capacity to prevent issues through asset optimization and management). Indeed, in addition to third-party solutions co-innovated by Schneider Electric Exchange communities, the ecosystem includes our EcoStruxure™ solutions, which provide access to Schneider’s open, interoperable, IoT-enabled system architecture and ecosystem of experts such as best-in-breed technology partners.

We know that trust is crucial within collaborative digital ecosystems, so Schneider Electric Exchange is built on trust, and applies strict privacy and security standards, reviews and frameworks.

People-led progress for the future of Industry 4.0 

These are exciting times. Platforms are an enabler of accelerated community-driven problem solving. And they bring with it a renewed emphasis on people empowerment. We nurture people-led progress by cultivating a continuous learning mindset and strengthening an environment in which early digital adopters, traditional innovators, and partners can dare to disrupt.

Empowerment for our people and partners is at the heart of this innovation, which we reinforce on a-day-to-day basis and encourage through knowledge sharing, learning and experimentation. With our digital ecosystem, we’re expanding the reach of this cultural shift toward relevant, disruptive innovation that places diverse communities of problem-solvers at the center of progress.

For example, we have launched an open competition for innovators to develop the most effective algorithm for Food & Bev manufacturers to minimize the use of resources (water, energy, and chemical cleaning supplies) and time, while ensuring high cleaning standards. Who will solve this pressing business problem in the best way? So far, 350 proposals have been submitted, and the competition is still open, followed by others.

What ultimately happens when you empower people and enable their collective intelligence to work its magic within the open platform? Together, we can advance and accelerate the digital transformation of industry — carving out a more energy-efficient, productive future of Industry 4.0.

[i] Martin Hirt, “If you’re not building an ecosystem, chances are your competitors are,” McKinsey & Company blog, June 12, 2018

The post Harnessing the Power of Collaboration to Advance the Digital Transformation of Industry appeared first on Schneider Electric Blog.

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