Digital is trending. Whenever as a consultant I add the word “digital” to a sentence, it makes the whole sentence sound and feel more 21st century. The challenge is, that not many people really understand what digital is, where it adds value, or the breadth of impact it can have on the automotive industry today.
Over the past few years, the strongest focus on digital impacts has probably been in customer experience: using the web for digital marketing, selling cars online for digital sales, and building ongoing loyalty through digital aftersales. However, in recent times, it seems that quite often the strongest business cases for digital investment come not from Marketing Sales & Service, but further back down the value chain in Manufacturing. Topics such as Predictive Maintenance, Autonomics, and Manufacturing Intelligence are now becoming extremely important; every robot, tool and machine in the production line is becoming intelligent, and companies are looking to see how they can use this intelligence to improve the end-to-end manufacturing process. Suddenly, “digital” is hitting manufacturing, and manufacturing itself is becoming trendy.
I hope with Capgemini’s launch of AutomotiveConnect for Suppliers today, we can showcase some of the areas where the automotive industry seems to be leapfrogging other industries, and making automotive the flagship for digital excellence.