Skip to Content

A winning strategy for open innovation and the internet of things

Aditya Kamalapurkar

Warren Buffet once said, “In the business world, the rearview mirror is clearer than the windshield.” With newer ways of monitoring and managing physical objects through software and sensors available, are you building a winning IoT strategy today?

Back in the 1920s, Nikola Tesla prophesized how instruments and wireless would change the world. About three decades later, Alan Turing, one the founding fathers of modern computing and artificial intelligence, brought about smart machine communications. Not long after came a Coke machine at CMU, until finally Kevin Ashton coined the term “internet of things” in a presentation to Proctor & Gamble in 1999. With the latest IDC survey forecasting a one-trillion dollar IoT market by 2022, the rest, as they say, is history.

With vast, varying, and new data and communication streams, where does an IoT journey begin for better, automated, and intelligent avenues of decision making? What is the strategy and how does one execute it? At the Capgemini SAP Center of Excellence, we have not only built solutions and helped clients identify and target the right IoT applications, we have also put a sound framework and strategy in place to help clients move beyond a PoC/pilots to truly monetize and scale their solutions.

The coupling of the Open Innovation (OI) paradigm with our unique portfolio approach helped us take a two-step strategy in starting client IoT journeys. Our first step is through an engaging workshop that brings to life an updated client portfolio clearly identifying their largest revenue influencers and taking a systems theory approach. Our objective is simple – begin with what exists and link it together. Companies already make/sell some fantastic products and services in their existing business. Before we explore the radically new, we “IoT-enable” the winning bets on existing products/processes/services. We look at existing assets and help monetize them the IoT way. The next step is scale. David Lowson, head of Capgemini’s European SAP Practice and Center of Excellence, challenged the CoE on maximizing impact at our clients by scaling the work we do – scale, both in terms of number of use cases as well as the breadth of application. So, at the Capgemini SAP Innovation Center, we rapidly changed the mode of operations to develop common architectures for multiple offers and use cases! This resulted in finding common threads for this phygital play, helping us be more agile, more dynamically responsive, and of course – scale. For David, these are building blocks of the intelligent enterprise.

IoT, in my view, is fundamentally about gathering, interacting with, and communication data. And this is broadly classified at three levels – sensors/devices, platforms, and applications. To truly understand the ecosystem dynamics, interconnect devices, increase their value proposition, share information, cooperate, and think of innovative ways to partner cross-industry – Open Innovation is key. With our certified accelerators, Track & Trace, Molecular Sensing and host of other solutions we are not just building capabilities but, in fact, building a large network of startups/universities with the Capgemini Applied Innovation Exchange Centers and initiatives, such as FD4DI.

With the SAP Cloud Platform and SAP Leonardo, Capgemini is now exploring avenues for more sustainable value-based innovations for clients. With rapidly changing business models in the ecosystem we look at lean startup methodologies, rapid prototyping and to fast fail before massive investments flow into something that will meet eventual doom or simply sit on the shelf looking pretty.

Visit us at our Capgemini Applied Innovation Exchange Centers if you want a “lunch and learn” or innovation day session for your team and you. To learn more, see our demos, or build quick PoCs, contact my colleagues David Lowson, Valery Smague, Alex Bulat, or me.