Insights 02/2014 Contents

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Digitization is changing the business world more than it would seem at first glance. When it comes to speed, soon we will be using an entirely new scale for measuring it. 

The phenomenon is well known from the computer industry and entertainment electronics: Since rapid technological advances give some products a substantial increase in capabilities and interesting service options, the next generation may hit the market after just one year. That takes significantly longer in other industries. The rule of thumb in the auto industry: It takes four years to develop a vehicle and then a model is sold for six to eight years, generally with a facelift halfway through. 

With the growing distribution of digital technologies in every area of business and our lives, these cycles are shortening significantly – because more is possible and customers want more. When faster electronic assistance systems are developed for cars and networked vehicles constantly exchange data – for example, to increase safety and comfort for route and

maintenance planning – buyers want to benefit from that. Otherwise they will go to competitors who already have these new innovations. Development accelerates even more when industries merge with one another. In the future market for electro-mobility, traditional auto companies and suppliers are wrestling with energy suppliers and IT companies over key positions in the impending networked systems, because high profits beckon from there. If these companies unleash innovative power strengthened through digital technologies, experts stop talking about years before e-vehicles are affordable, and start counting in just months or even weeks. 

Digitization opens up opportunities in every industry. Businesses that recognize its potential early on and make immediate use of it can significantly improve their competitive position by bringing products to market faster and developing them continuously, as well as supplementing them with smart services based on the information and channels yielded by the intelligent use of digital technology. 

The opportunities also include improvements to internal processes and procedures. Triemli Municipal Hospital in Zurich is pioneering the use of locating technologies to improve treatment quality.
A1 Telekom Austria is managing a comprehensive restructuring effort for greater customer orientation through challenging benchmarking with massive IT implementation. And motorcycle manufacturer Ducati is cutting its design time in half with the help of 3-D printers. 

Business managers need to formulate their digitization strategies. Not someday, but now – otherwise they will miss the boat, which is ready to set sail in many industries. Studies show that Europe has a good deal of catching up to do. But CEOs aren’t the only ones on the line – politicians are, too: They need to drive expansion of the digital infrastructure and creation of a uniform European legal framework as well as cut back the red tape. Currently many businesses cannot respond at full speed because they need to observe the different regulatory requirements in the individual EU nations. 

Whether in business, policy or administration: Digitization needs to be thought of in terms of days and weeks instead of months and years in order to keep up in the global race with China and the US.

Digitization | Smart Business Models Pick up every thread at lightning speed

Digital technologies are fundamentally changing the business world. They allow companies to launch innovative business models and smart service offerings faster and combine them better. The key for businesses is to position themselves at the switch points of new cross-industry value chains and steer further development.

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They shaped people’s memories for generations: The “Kodak Moment” stood for personal experiences captured in images. The “Kodak Vista Point” showed the best vantage point for tourist attractions. Photos were shot with film negatives, developed with chemicals and enlarged on special paper for viewing. The Eastman Kodak Company provided everything related to film and photos and made a healthy profit – until smartphones and digital cameras replaced film negatives and their accompanying chemicals, and new printers replaced the special paper. The company, which once set standards with a long-standing tradition going back to 1892, went bankrupt in 2012 – it simply hadn’t managed the transition from analog to the digital age. 

These days they should probably be called “Cewe Color Moments.” Cewe Stiftung & Co. KGaA has been growing steadily for years, having transformed itself from an expert in industrial analog photo finishing to the leading provider of digital photo products. 

The company recognized the importance of digital business early on. “Cewe is setting standards as a first mover for implementing new digital technologies and products,” says CEO Rolf Hollander. “We provide a steady stream of impetus for the market.” With the Cewe Fotowelt app, customers can easily place personal photos in the pages of a customizable photo album as well as add their own text and order the album directly from their mobile device. Customers who want to save shipping costs can pick up the product from the retail partner of their choice.

Many industries are seeing upheaval: New competitors are putting pressure on front-runners once considered unassailable – business follows different rules in the era of the Internet of Things, Industry 4.0 and smart services. Businesses that succeed are the ones that use digital technologies to optimize processes and analyze information to help them develop innovative offerings and business models. 


“Digitization is changing markets like we haven’t seen in decades,” notes Frank Riemensperger, Country Managing Director of Accenture Germany. “Companies that seize the opportunity trigger a massive engine for growth for the next five years – digitization opens up unbelievable opportunities for making products smart and using them to stay in contact with customers after the sale.”

The results of the 2014 Accenture Technology Vision, “Every Business Is a Digital Business – From Digitally Disrupted to Digital Disrupter,” confirm that statement. The latest innovations show how much is possible through digitization. For example, experts at Philips and Accenture developed an app as the heart of the system for mobile devices – called wearables – that enables paralyzed patients to control items like a TV with their thoughts. 

Digitization has many facets 

Understanding the facets and potential of digitization is crucial. Smart products transmit data via the Internet during operation. At mechatronic components specialist Wittenstein, a controller unit analyzes information on the status of a machine tool, which order is being processed or whether a component needs to be switched out. Comprehensive lifecycle management reduces costs and increases operational readiness. General Electric uses data from hundreds of sensors in gas turbines to improve efficiency – and just one percent is equal to US$6 billion a year. 

Smart data supports innovative offerings and business models by connecting several data sources. The French company Schneider Electric integrates models for weather forecasting in solutions for building automation, so climate control units adjust to the expected outdoor temperature. 

Electricity supplies can be controlled through a similar platform. Switzerland’s ABB Group plans the coordination of distributed power plants. Decentralized generators are managed, monitored and marketed via an app. Customers can purchase power when it is cheap based on the data. The plant builder becomes an information broker. 

Everything can be combined 

Smart services are intelligent concepts that combine digital and physical services. Austria’s leading producer of firefighting technology, Rosenbauer, equips its vehicles with a mobile information management system. Many sources can be called up on-site at the press of a button, providing details about an accident location or cars or even current weather information. This enables the crew to plan their actions precisely. There are also interesting ideas in logistics. Airbus joined forces with Rimowa, T-Systems, DHL and Hermes so that the intelligent,

networked suitcase Bag2Go can travel independently from its owner – controlled and monitored via a private cloud. This way, airplane capacities are better utilized and lost luggage is easy to find. 

Using digital technologies makes such innovations possible. In addition to connecting products via the Internet to each other as well as to a control center with permanent data sharing, the analysis of the collected information is very important. For that reason, the smart space must also be suitable – the use of IT in the form of apps and data centers. 

China Eastern Airlines distributes countless mini-programs through their app store for its 50,000 employees who work with mobile devices. Thanks to the apps, everyone has access to the information they need for work. And BMW assumes that by 2018, ongoing messages will need to be processed from 10 million vehicles, estimated at a terabyte per day. 

As such, access to massive storage as well as high-performance analysis software are at the top of the IT agenda. Analytics/HANA and cloud computing play their role here as part of the growing digitization trend. Only companies that effectively make use of the information collected as big data will remain successful – asking the right question and using the answer to develop offerings and business models that appeal to customers. Understanding the consumer is key: Digitization also gives them access to information, and they show a growing willingness to switch suppliers when their needs are not met

Cross-selling is opening up enormous potential for Deutsche Bank. New types of data analysis reduce the time for recognizing suitable opportunities in the customer database from 45 minutes to five seconds. Japanese retail chain Yodobashi combines analytics with location-based services for customizing offers and calculates in two seconds, from the time the five million members in its customer card program enter the store, what kind of rebate coupon they’ll be offered. 


The importance of platforms 

Complex system solutions like the European network of charging stations for electric vehicles require suitable usage of IT. Not only do operators of electric charging stations connect through this platform, but providers of value-adding services such as geodata and telematics do as well. What’s important is who sets the pace. “The control points shift in this type of smart service world,” states Henning Kagermann, President of the German National Academy of Science and Engineering (Acatech). “Companies that occupy the customer and data interface points for intelligent networked products and services establish the central control point and will profit as a business – and business will pass those by who cannot position themselves on the service platform.” 

Digital technologies also change development and production. A 3-D printer in every house is still a pipe dream for the future, but 3-D printers are helping VW subsidiary Ducati cut the time spent on product 

design in half. And the convergence of different industries and technologies is enabling the previously unimaginable. For example, Siemens is combining the medical-imaging expertise of its healthcare division with its motion control division’s proficiency in cuttingedge manufacturing. Patient data from X-ray images is converted into a bone model, and then a prosthesis model. This control data is sent to a CNC machine and then, within a day, to a lathe to produce a customized implant. This makes patient-specific products an alternative to standard prosthetics. 

Some companies need to catch up 

Accenture views the topic from a broader perspective and offers services for product lifecycle management (PLM), helping industrial customers develop new products in a more efficient end-to-end process from research to maintenance, launch them sooner on the market and perform maintenance more easily. PLM is a trailblazer of the growing digitization trend, which 

far more manufacturing companies need to focus on than is currently the case. For that reason, Walter Hagemeier is raising awareness in the German business community. “Companies cannot overlook what is happening around them,” states the Managing Director of Strategy at Accenture Germany. They should critically examine how stable their traditional businesses are and how to take advantage of the digitization trend and the increasing importance of technology for growth.



He urgently recommends figuring out precisely where they are in developing a digital strategy, digital offerings and digital capabilities (see below). “Our new Digitization Index shows that many companies have seen the sign of the times,” says Accenture Germany director Riemensperger, referring to the new top 500 study. “But others first need to adjust to the new realities.” 

The Digitization Index as a practical guide to greater success 

Answers to the following questions show where businesses stand in terms of utilizing digital technologies: 

How evolved is the digital strategy?
Trend: Does the company know the extent to which digitization is impacting its industry?
Objectives: To what extent is digitization reflected in the business strategy? 



How evolved are the digital offerings? 
Products: Which intelligent, smart or digital products and solutions do they have? 
Services: Which customer-oriented, Internet-based services do they have? 
Interaction: Do customers have personal contact via digital channels and social media? 
Consulting/sales: Are there special opportunities for digital ordering/consulting? 
Service: Can customers track their order online or use after-sales services? 

How evolved are the digital capabilities?
Business model/organization: Is “digital” a measure for changes?
IT usage: Are digital technologies/methods such as big data and analytics used?
Processes/procedures: Do virtual teams or videoconferences play a role?

Source: “New Businesses, New Competitors: Germany’s Top500 and the Digital Challenge” 

Digital Customer | Customer Focus Successful with a personal touch

With the help of digital technologies, companies can
build closer relationships with individual potential
customers. A business that is accepted into a
customer’s social network can appeal to that
customer with ongoing, largely
customized offerings.

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Glamorous image, venerated products – with a stock market value of 400 billion euros, Apple was considered the world’s most expensive company in late 2014 due to its tremendously loyal customers. People who love their iPhones won’t simply go to the competition. But even a company that knows its customers’ wants and needs well can make mistakes. And thus began a storm of outrage on the Internet when 500 million iTunes users found an album by the rock band U2 in their libraries without having purchased it. One indignant customer tweeted:
“I don’t even have enough storage space for one photo. How can Apple assume that I need a U2 album?” Apple apologized and set up a web page where customers could remove the music with a single click. 

Customer loyalty is on the decline 

A standardized gift for 500 million people – that’s no longer appropriate when customers can decide for themselves which experiences they want to have 

based on personal expectations and needs. The digitization of business is profoundly changing the contact between consumers and companies, as the Nonstop Consumer Model from Accenture shows: For many products, customers used to go through the predictable phases of perception, information and consideration, purchase decision, and usage. Today they focus constantly on innovative developments, new possibilities for usage and alternatives while, at the same time, comparing these with their own impressions. This may increase loyalty sometimes, but often also the willingness to switch to the competition.

According to a 2013 Accenture study in emerging markets, 81 percent of those surveyed were looking for a new supplier or provider because they were dissatisfied with the service of their old provider; in industrialized nations, it was 54 percent. The affected companies lost US$5.9 trillion in revenues – and their managers need to recoup those losses in other areas before they can even think of growth. 

Individual appeal is important 

To minimize revenue losses and be able to win new customers, it isn’t enough to collect and analyze huge volumes of data. It’s becoming increasingly important to offer potential customers compelling and convincing digital experiences and precisely target the characteristics of specific groups in selected regions.

That’s why the Accenture study, “Archetypes: Winning in a Geographically Diverse and Digital World,” distinguishes not only between developed markets, developing markets, fragmented emerging markets as well as digital megacities such as Shanghai – but also between different customer groups, such as the healthconscious, the over-50s or the superpremium consumers.

Companies need to consider these types with every digital experience that they provide, but which are actually driven by customers themselves and constantly updated through their personal behavior. Information-sharing and offering-generation need to be customized and perfected through the intelligent use of technology. Offers that are hyper-relevant are considered particularly useful, presenting the right solution at the right time, instead of delivering general advertising messages.

Additionally, digitization opens up the opportunity for personal dialogue with any potential customer through many channels and individualized advice – businesses create a relationship of trust with customers this way, which seems almost intimate and harks back to the era of mom-and-pop stores. But only those who communicate uniformly across all contact points and ensure that employees are up-to-date on advising and problem-solving make a good impression – no one wants to share the same old information again and again with new contacts. 

Social media is essential 

Mobile communication channels as well as social media are extremely important for dialogue with customers. This way, potential customers not only have the opportunity to make contact anytime, anywhere – it also makes them feel like they’re being treated as individuals and taken seriously, that they are taking a reliable, trustworthy company into their expanded social environment or network. Contact probably wasn’t this intimate even in the era of mom-and-pop stores. 



Accenture Change Tracking | A1 Telekom Austria On course with Accenture Change Tracking

A1 Telekom Austria is substantially restructuring its business processes to improve efficiency and service. The patented model for measuring willingness to change will show whether employees can follow the program and how strongly they support it.

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The objective: remain the market leader. The course: a comprehensive business transformation for better service and efficiency. The challenge: get 9,000 employees heavily involved in this long-term program to ensure its success. The “nendo” program – which Austria’s leading communications provider, A1 Telekom Austria, is implementing to keep the competition at bay – sounds like a Herculean task, even for experienced change managers. “It’s a transformation program for simple, fast and efficient sales and service processes and systems that get customers excited,” states Thomas Königshofer, nendo program manager. “nendo is the only way we can achieve that – it’s uncomplicated, intelligent, pragmatic, fast and customer-oriented.” This means optimally supporting customers throughout the process through a uniform sales and service system and a fully modular product logic for every contact, regardless of which channel. Moreover, automation and intelligent self-service solutions not only expedite the activation of products by customers and troubleshooting – they also reduce costs. 



Recognize course deviations earlier 

For a successful transformation, all of the approximately 550 program employees need to be fully committed to achieving the nendo objectives. To ensure that this important and comprehensive project stays on course, program managers are using Accenture Change Tracking, which is based on a patented scientific model and comprehensive benchmark data. Change Tracking measures and compares the willingness and ability to change of precisely defined groups of people in the program. Based on the results, managers can make targeted, data-driven decisions to influence the transformation’s success over the long term. Change Tracking delivers crucial insights – from whether employees feel that management supports them to how well they understand the objectives, from the general perception of the program to estimates of whether goals will be achieved. This enables management to derive necessary measures tailored specifically to suit the participating groups of people. “With this navigation system, managers can take

progressive action and guide projects looking forward,” says Sven Drinkuth from Accenture. “With Change Tracking, management can use current data to assess future developments and risks – and react long before traditional methods could recognize a course deviation. This enables them to direct activities right to where they are needed the most.” 

Many years of research as well as complex analytical forecasting methods and mathematical models underlie the Change Tracking concept. Through Change Tracking, customers receive clear, understandable results that render decision-making easier. They can tie these results to objectives and key performance indicators. Change Tracking can determine how strongly those employees responsible for implementing the transformation program actually support a change. It can also analyze to what extent employees affected by the transformation are able to follow the course. To do so, they fill out a compact online questionnaire. Their answers are evaluated 

anonymously and compared with around 650,000 data sets from hundreds of change projects that serve as a benchmark. This concentrated knowledge about success strategies and stumbling blocks in transformation programs – from reorganizations and mergers to IT implementations and cost-reduction programs – is used to create a three-dimensional map that represents the results of the specific demographic target groups and assesses future developments. The Change Tracking model can predict the “levers” underlying a change. These levers – for example, vision, leadership or communication – seriously influence the success of the program. The prediction thus makes it possible to assess whether deviations require massive intervention or just a little more support. 

Accenture provides the analysis and evaluation of collected data. A mixed A1 and Accenture team in Vienna determines the groups being examined and defines the demographic structures underlying the evaluations. An offshore Accenture team performs the data evaluation and prepares reports. The results are 

classified in Vienna and used as a basis for deriving recommendations for action. Around 550 employees who collaborate on the transformation program are surveyed. Results from heavily involved areas – such as IT, customer service and marketing – carry the most weight. The Change Tracking survey is designated to be repeated throughout the nendo program. This will simplify both navigating the transformation that is so crucial for A1 and measuring the success of implemented measures in solid terms. 

Replace gut feeling with facts 

Sven Drinkuth emphasizes that Change Tracking delivers invaluable information. “Decisions are made using well-founded evaluations based on robust numbers and analyses, not just a gut feeling or intuition anymore,” states Drinkuth. “Moreover, you can recognize immediately how you can help specific groups and areas achieve the goal. Many transformations fail because managers follow a vague 

feeling of dissatisfaction and either tinker with a few spots without any plan, or make no changes at all because they don’t even know where to start.” Renate Legény, in charge of communication and change management for the nendo program, also considers this the key point: “Accenture Change Tracking helps us guide the program looking ahead. Without this navigational help, the risk of running off course would increase substantially.” 



A1 Telekom Austria 

Headquarters: Vienna, Austria 
Executive management: Dr. Hannes Ametsreiter, CEO
Employees: approximately 8,800 (2013) 
Revenue: 2.7 billion euros (2013) 
Industry: telecommunications

Competitiveness | CEO Agenda CEOs have to recognize where to improve

Europe’s managers underestimate the influence
of new digital technologies on their industries.
German executives in particular need to think
intensively about the question of how a
company can remain competitive in the
age of digitalization.

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The data looks good at first glance: Robust economic growth, an enormous export surplus, shrinking unemployment, rising tax revenues and a balanced national budget give the impression that Germany is prospering as a business location more than it has for a long time. It's also fitting that many companies are reporting high revenues despite a strong euro and political or economic crises around the world – so plenty of positive things are being done at the top management levels. 

Germany in danger of falling behind 

But when we take a closer look, the outlook for German companies seems rather average. For example, the image is somewhat clouded by the survey from the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) for the Accenture CEO Briefing 2014, “The Business Agenda for Europe: Growth in a Digital World.” Managers in major European countries anticipate good business for the foreseeable future and also want to conquer new 

markets with additional offerings. Four out of five of those surveyed in Germany say that aside from the domestic market, new products for new customers will be the top revenue driver in the next few years. 

At the same time, the study shows that Europe is falling behind in an area crucial for competitiveness: the use of digital technologies to develop innovative products, services and business models. “Countries such as the United States and China have increased their investment in new digital technologies and innovation as a means to drive growth, while adoption in the major EU economies is lagging as these executives remain less convinced about digital and the impact it can have on their business,” says Jo Deblaere, Group Chief Executive of Accenture Europe. 

As the EIU numbers show, it is high time to reconsider. The current strength of German companies in particular is also due to the use of technology, but more for reducing costs and improving efficiency. Of those surveyed in Germany, 70 percent consider this 

to be the primary benefit of digital technologies, but this success tends to confuse perspectives on their true potential. Only one out of four sees digital technologies as an instrument for increasing revenues, compared with an overall average of 45 percent, and 70 percent in China. 

It’s no longer enough to just improve efficiency or reduce costs. 

The importance of areas such as cloud computing, social media, e-commerce, analytics, mobile devices and services, as well as communication between machines for service and customer focus, are also underestimated: Only half of the participants in Germany believe that these technologies can improve their business relationships or make them more profitable. In the United States, 69 percent of those surveyed believe this, and 89 percent in China. “While cost is a necessary focus, executives may need to 

rebalance their investment to better support their ambitious growth plans,” notes Deblaere. “This will enable companies to generate new levels of innovation and growth to better serve customers and consumers who demand new products, services and better experiences.” 

People underestimate digitalization 

Up to now, this recognition has failed to penetrate most top-level German management organizations. Regardless of whether the questions dealt with new products, better service, additional sales channels, targeted employee recruitment or effective corporate governance – only a small segment of participants believed that investment in digital technologies for these areas was very important. Also striking: Almost no one wants to imagine that ongoing digitalization will soon completely transform his or her industry. The dramatic changes facing the business world are only truly clear to those who drive their businesses forward through their own products and services. 

For Franck Cohen, President for Europe, the Middle East and Africa at SAP, however, technology is a powerful force for disruption. “It’s going to affect the vast majority of industries,” he says. “For some of them, the changes are dramatic, especially in the media, telecoms and music, but others, like more traditional consumer products companies, will also have to reinvent themselves.” Even industries such as construction, which actually deals with tangible products, will experience significant changes in service delivery through the influence of digitalization. 




Digital Agenda | Regional Economic Policy Politicians need to think of the future

The EU has set a “digital agenda” for itself,
but still lags behind the United States and
China in implementing digital technologies.
Uniform regulation, better education and
greater investment in modern infrastructure
could change that.

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Government infrastructure projects are an economic driving force: Public investment in transportation not only creates growth and jobs, it fulfills a prerequisite for the rapid and cost-effective transportation of people and material. Every business profits from it, not just the contractors. Expansion at airports, such as Frankfurt’s, or the new Austria-Italy and Switzerland-Italy Alpine-tunnels form the basis of development for entire economic regions and industries. 

But pride in impressive construction projects with a clearly recognizable purpose cannot be allowed to lead to a lack of investment in less prestigious projects. This applies to digital technologies: They started changing broad areas of the economy and society long ago without being overly visible. For example, many facets of Industry 4.0 remain unknown to the public at large. The success of investments in this area will become visible when new business models or companies are created that increase growth and prosperity. If no money is spent here, a national 

economy will fall behind the economies of countries that grasp the importance of seizing the opportunities at hand. 

Without government policy support, digital dividends will remain small 

When seen in this light, the Businesseurope association’s appeal to politicians at the national as well as EU level to finally provide answers to the challenges that digitalization poses for the economy and society is self-explanatory. “Many entrepreneurs and SMEs are keen to develop their potential. But they need a supportive environment to be successful,” says Emma Marcegaglia, the association’s president. “The European Union aims to ensure that 20 percent of its GDP is generated by industry by 2020. In order to achieve that, Europe must stop regulating itself to death. It must unleash its innovation potential and accelerate the digitalization of its economy.” 


Entrepreneurs and managers are currently concerned about the situation of the European economy. This is one conclusion reached in the study “Accelerating Europe’s Comeback – Digital Opportunities for Competitiveness and Growth,” by Businesseurope, European Business Summit and Accenture. Those surveyed assumed that digital technologies will drive growth and competitiveness in the future – two-thirds expect that for their own industry. However, half of them fear that Europe will fall behind the US and China in development and usage by 2017. Despite this skepticism, many decision-makers believe that the EU could be on the right path with its Digital Agenda for Europe if it just stays the course. 

Better conditions are needed 

The EU needs to show a stronger commitment in traditional infrastructure projects like expanding cable and mobile phone networks.  



While the US already has the 5G fast transmission standard at the ready, many Europeans still use 3G for their phones. If the economy is going to earn a digital dividend, it needs support in other areas as well. This includes education and training for skilled experts so that new technologies can be implemented by qualified people. Better conditions for new entrepreneurs are also important: Startups serve as an incubator for innovation. 

Furthermore, Europe needs to standardize its regulatory framework across borders. For example, cloud computing is interesting specifically because service providers can make customers largely independent of location and time with regard to IT hardware and software – making them more efficient and agile. However, if companies first need to find, study and then implement the EU’s competing national laws in their everyday business, they can hardly realize the anticipated competitive advantages. 


Process Optimization | Triemli Municipal Hospital Always in good hands

Real-time locating systems make it easier to locate
people or mobile devices and to share information
through messenger functions. Triemli Municipal
Hospital in Zurich, Switzerland, wants to use
RTLS to improve quality and service while
reducing costs – with support from Accenture.

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“Anyone who stops getting better, stops being good.” Sometimes this quote is attributed to Philip Rosenthal, the porcelain magnate, sometimes industrialist Robert Bosch – but this realization shapes the thoughts and actions of every manager in businesses and organizations. The Swiss healthcare industry is no exception: Already among the best in the world, it aims to steadily increase both the quality and scope of services for medical treatment. Particularly in hospitals, tools that provide better support to personnel in performing medical and administrative tasks are in demand – tools that increase efficiency while, at the same time, improving treatment quality and the service spectrum for the good of the patient. Innovative aids are essential here – for example, for locating people and mobile devices faster. The exchange of information between employ- ees and patients, as well as within the hospital systems, is also much easier. Leading the way is a pilot project at Triemli Municipal Hospital in Zurich; with around 500 beds, it is one of the Canton’s largest hospitals. The team under CIO and deputy hospital director

Patrik Kaiser had the idea of optimizing processes in the outpatient perioperative center (OPC) by using a system for locating mobile devices and sharing information: “A more automated way of capturing data and easier forwarding of data on patients and processes leave staff more time for medical and nursing responsibilities.” 

A unique approach 

The pilot project is supposed to answer three questions: Does automatic data capturing of defined services, such as consultation hours, reduce administrative effort? Does linking mobile devices with the hospital system improve information sharing through faster delegation of tasks or flexible calling to individual patients in the waiting area? Does operating a functional system prove feasibility? Up to now, hospitals have only used locating and messaging functions – called real-time locating systems (RTLS) – to trigger localizable alarms or automatically 

control access. The identification and location of people in combination with an information system has not yet been realized. “If the solution proves effective in the OPC, it could become the standard in our new wing opening in 2016,” states Brigitte Bodin-Geiser, IT project manager at Triemli. The municipal hospital would become a trendsetter in the healthcare industry. 

To implement the complex plan, the IT project team sought a partner that has experience with IT projects, RTLS solutions and the special challenges that hospitals face. Accenture was chosen because it has global experience with over 100 RTLS projects and a flexible team available with IT experts, project managers and specialist medical personnel. The Triemli IT project team worked with Accenture to plan the RTLS technology implementation, test the relevant processes, build and configure the system with collaboration partner Siemens and ensure the smooth flow of information with the hospital’s existing IT. The staff was trained to use the solution from both the 

user perspective and the provider perspective in a training program that was custom-developed. “The pilot project shows that the IT department at Triemli Municipal Hospital can run the system with very little effort,” notes Accenture project manager Nina Pross. The locating function can determine at any time via WLAN where employees and patients who are entered in the system are located. This simplifies work in the process-control system and enables long-term process optimization through the evaluation of information. 

The experience is very positive 

Among other things, experience in the pilot phase has demonstrated that the individual treatment steps have become more transparent. Information sharing is also significantly more efficient: Since the project began, the number of employee calls to clarify questions with each other has been cut in half. The call function also works perfectly: Patients can move around freely in defined areas such as the cafeteria. 

Not having to stay in one place until being called makes waiting far more comfortable. “The project reveals opportunities for improving efficiency and patient service long term – and a big part of the credit goes to the mixed team from Triemli and Accenture, with IT professionals and medical specialists working hand-in-hand to develop the optimal solution,” comments Brigitte Bodin-Geiser happily. 

Medical care becomes even better 

Triemli Municipal Hospital now has a base system that offers flexibility for expanding to include additional RTLS functionalities. “Aside from the standard application of locating relevant devices quickly on larger wards, the support for patient safety it offers is another example of how the hospital is looking to the future,” emphasizes Gregor Emch, Accenture specialist for health services. “Automatic patient identification with consistent data matching does an even better job of preventing incorrect medication.”

Experience with innovative approaches to locating as well as messaging enables Triemli Municipal Hospital to differentiate itself from other hospitals and establish a lasting competitive advantage. 

Triemli Municipal Hospital 

Headquarters: Zurich, Switzerland
Executive management: Dr. Erwin Carigiet, Hospital Director
Employees: approximately 2,400
Patients: approximately 20,000
Industry: health 

Corporate Strategy | Cloud Computing A world in itself

Cloud proponents claim it turbocharges efficiency, while critics call it a security risk. Differences aside, it is definitely worth considering. Carefully plan the move to cloud computing and align processes, structures and training accordingly, and you can boost your competitiveness over the long term, with more agility and lower costs.

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DPD, a logistics service provider, is able to speed up transportation-related processes and lower costs by having its customers convert their data automatically into the standard DPD format – using a cloudbased service. Daimler, the car manufacturer, is upgrading its IT organization to boost its performance. The CIO’s objective is to procure 30 percent of the applications from the cloud within 10 years. Many sectors are experiencing a new boom in the number of start-ups, since they can now get all the computing power they need from the cloud, they can put ideas into practice that, until just a few years ago, only large corporations could have financed. 

Cloud computing has taken hold 

Cloud computing is well established by now. It has a significant influence on business models, and plays a role in harmonizing IT architectures and making IT management more efficient. Advocates cite service orientation, scalability, and availability as key 

advantages. Nevertheless, critics still claim that putting IT in the cloud represents a potential loss in control, which could have negative effects on companies’ business activities and pose security risks, because data could get lost or “skimmed off the top.” Many executive boards and IT managers are having a difficult time when it comes to making decisions about cloud-related topics. Almost on a daily basis, they have to confront cloud computing myths, which push the facts into the background; as a result, they cannot properly assess the potential advantages and disadvantages of investing in the cloud and its associated requirements. For that reason, it is extremely important to perform a reality check on these myths. 

For example, skeptics claim that cloud computing affects only the IT organization and hardly has any impact on the company. Actually, it can open new growth prospects, partly by means of entirely new business models. Besides enabling one to use technology, data and IT services in a flexible manner, 

it allows for comprehensive process standardization. Besides being catalysts for products and services in the Internet of Things, cloud-based services stand out due to their agility and ability to overcome obstacles to growth because they make large investments in a company’s own IT infrastructure unnecessary. Cloud computing should not be misunderstood as a small step in a technical trend toward more IT industrialization and cost reductions. Instead, it is an essential foundation for future business innovation. 

Data security is assured 

There are also widespread concerns that cloud computing jeopardizes data security and data protection. In fact, many cloud-based solutions increase customers’ data security. The key point is to evaluate service providers thoroughly. One should select a certified provider, whose core competence lies in IT security based on its expertise and the scalability of security measures offered.

In addition, every cloud strategy requires an end-to-end security concept that takes into account requirements specific to an industry or country as well as security levels for user groups, applications and data. Clear contractual provisions in regard to collaboration as well as the return and deletion of data are equally important.

There is some dispute about whether cloud computing really does decrease costs. Truth be told, savings do not occur automatically. IT expenditures do go down when the cloud strategy is well thought-out and accompanied by strict cost management. 


Project planning is critical 

Generally, the integration of cloud-based applications in a company’s other IT solutions is a complex undertaking, especially because not every interface follows cloud standards. Also, one cannot simply compare recurrent IT costs to those of a cloud solution. Integration costs and internal resources needed for normal operations must also be considered. Employee training and write-offs on the existing infrastructure have a negative influence on the business case, while decreased energy costs represent a positive factor. Those who take these aspects into account and plan their strategies accordingly can expect to benefit from cloud computing. 

The main argument against cloud computing is often the worry that control over the IT will be lost. This could indeed happen without comprehensive IT governance. 


However, if that’s the case, then management does not have a firm grasp over its IT anyway. The risk is manageable if cloud computing is carefully planned and explained to the employees. It’s important to provide them with clear options for IT investments and the procurement of IT services. Furthermore, “shadow IT services,” as they are known, which are often included in internal IT-related purchases, must also be eliminated. Last but not least, the IT department has to establish itself as a service provider as well as an innovation consultant for the other departments. It needs to discuss requirements promptly with the business side and manage the portfolio in a target-oriented, open-minded manner. The people who are best able to tap into the advantages of cloud computing will be those who address this topic with a good strategy and have a stable enterprise architecture as a foundation. Cloud computing is not a magic bullet, but when implemented properly, it can help to increase a company’s competitiveness over the long term. 



The truth behind cloud computing 

Its significance extends beyond IT: Skeptics say that cloud computing is really only intended for the IT organization and has little other use. In fact, cloud computing opens up expansion opportunities, partly even by allowing one to create totally new business models. 

The risks can be managed: Skeptics say that cloud computing holds risks in regard to data security and data protection. In fact, IT security needs to be a core area of competence of service providers, whose solutions enhance data security for many customers.
Cost reductions are possible: Skeptics say that cloud computing is not a straightforward way to reduce IT costs. In fact, IT expenditures can drop if the cloud strategy is properly planned and accompanied by strict cost management.

​A plan helps to retain control: Skeptics say that through cloud computing companies will lose control over their IT. In fact, this can already happen if there is no comprehensive IT governance; if that’s the case, then management doesn’t have a handle on the IT anyway, regardless whether cloud computing is implemented. 

Cloud computing is not a magic bullet, but when implemented properly, it can boost competitiveness. 


Source: Looking further ahead – exposing the myths: cloud computing. Why the cloud is going to change IT and business, too (www.accenture.de/cloudmythen, study available in German only) 

Identity Management System | DekaBank The control program keeps track of every user

Compliance, data security and other statutory regulations impose strict limitations on who has access to certain types of information. Every instance of access must be documented. With support provided by Accenture and Avanade, DekaBank set up a clearly structured, easy-to-use identity management system.

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To some people, the challenges placed on corporate IT by access management resemble an iceberg. “At first, you can only see a small fraction of the actual size, because most of it is below the waterline,” says Carsten Heitmann, an expert at Avanade, which is a joint venture between Accenture and Microsoft. “When you start working on the details,” he adds, “that’s when you become aware of the real scope of an issue.” 

Access control is hugely important 

The comparison comes up short in one aspect, however. With the iceberg, 10 percent of the whole is visible; in access management on the other hand, it’s even less – as exemplified by DekaBank, the investment firm of the German Savings Banks Finance Group (Sparkassen-Finanzgruppe). In setting up its identity management system, it sought assistance from Avanade to meet the Federal Ministry of Finance’s minimum requirements for risk management (MaRisk) as well as its own controlling

and compliance specifications. According to these, access to internal IT systems is to be governed, documented and audited in a transparent and traceable manner. The DekaBank has 4,180 employees, but manages several hundred thousand authorizations. And then, there are also the external employees and their IT access. In 2010, the DekaBank decided to overhaul its user and access management system. Its programs, which had been developed in-house, could no longer properly meet the requirements, such as automatic user and authorization lifecycles, a complete overview of authorizations and clearances, and clear verification procedures. Changes to user authorizations and access rights had to be implemented and documented manually. For those individuals who were issued new PCs or transferred to other departments, associated adjustments to access rights had to be entered manually – a time-consuming and error-prone procedure. For larger-scale changes, the individuals in question had to wait longer until access rights were stored in the systems and they could take over their 

new roles. A complete assessment, including a review of all authorizations, must be performed at least once annually according to MaRisk guidelines, and even on a semiannual basis for key IT systems. 

Central program for system control 

For that reason, DekaBank opted for an identity management system (IDM) based on the Omada Identity Suite and the Microsoft Forefront Identity Manager (FIM). Advantages include compliance reporting, data auditing, ease of use, strict and role-based access verification with an approval workflow, as well as comprehensive management of the entire lifecycle of user identities and associated authorizations. “The objective was to make IDM processes more transparent,” emphasizes Stefan Böhm, DekaBank’s project manager. “We wanted to be able to approve or delete authorizations with the push of a button. We also wanted to control lifecycles, safeguard approvals, monitor all processes and 

enable them to be traced end to end.” In addition, the centralized control system for simple, uniform and largely automated access management needed to offer a basis to fulfill future requirements. 

Authorizations are precisely defined 

In adapting the identity management system to its requirements, DekaBank went to the experts. Avanade and Accenture personnel offer these services as a team. Avanade specialists provide experience in the technical implementation of the system, including integration into existing IT systems, and develop numerous simplified processes to enhance ease of use – this includes, for example, turning a procedure of as many as five clicks into a one-click step. 

Before access rights are utilized technically, user roles must be defined and the content of the sequences needs to be properly thought out. One core process 

consists of same-day synchronization and supplying master data to all IT systems from the SAP HR system. “If the HR data set is deactivated in the SAP system, access to all IT systems is automatically blocked,” explains Christian Mattheis, Senior Director Infrastructure Services at Avanade. In addition, DekaBank will soon be using a three-step role model. The Basis and Function roles have been in use for a while already, with the Business role to be fully implemented by the end of 2014. 

The new procedure takes a load off supervisors because they do not have to deal with employee authorizations for every single IT system. It decreases the number of exceptions and increases data security, since the assigned role establishes precisely what someone can see. The IDM automatically ensures that former employees can no longer access their old data, since all IT systems have properly registered their departure. In addition, the system stores information on who has what type of access rights at what times, so any internal guideline violations can be traced. 

Once the roles were defined, the Avanade experts mapped the identity management system correspondingly. The interfaces adapted by Avanade in the Omada software made it possible for user names and authorizations to be taken over as desired and verified according to established rules. The project team applied simple processes here so that roles can be easily created and changed. 

Automation provides security 

Once the project is completed in 2014, the critical IT systems of the German business locations will be linked to a regular target vs. actual comparison process. Project manager Stefan Böhm is very satisfied, saying: “We were able to increase the automation level, simplify authorization processes, substantially decrease the administrative costs, especially for the verification processes, and map them in the simplest way possible for users.” 


Headquarters: Frankfurt, Germany Executive management: Michael Rüdiger, CEO 
Employees: 4,180 (2014)
Total assets: approx. 116 billion euros (2013) 
Industry: financial services

About Accenture

Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company, with more than 305,000 people serving clients in more than 120 countries. Combining unparalleled experience, comprehen- sive capabilities across all industries and business functions, and extensive research on the world’s most successful companies, Accenture collaborates with clients to help them become high-performance businesses and governments. The company generated net revenues of US$30.0 billion for the fiscal year ended Aug. 31, 2014.

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