Liiketoimintamalli tekee teknologiasta innovaation

Teknologian kehitys aiheuttaa luovaa tuhoakannattaviakin yrityksiä häviää ja uudenlaisia yrityksiä syntyy jatkuvasti. Toimialarajojen hämärtymistä ja alojen konvergoitumista on näkyvissä erityisesti digitalisaation ansiosta. Alustatalous toimii aivan erilaisena ekosysteemin yhteisenä nimittäjänä kuin perinteinen toimiala-ajattelu. Toimialojen muutos ja kehitys ei kuitenkaan ole suoraviivaista uuden teknologian käyttöönottoa eikä teknologian kehitys automaattisesi tarkoita muutosta. Toimijat, arvoketjut sekä markkinapuolen jaettavat kakut pysyvät monesti samoina, vaikka teknologia kehittyy.

Muutoksen aikaansaamiseksi teknologian kehitys vaatii rinnalleen liiketoimintamallin, joka linkittää uuden teknologian markkinoilla tunnistettuun tai syntymässä olevaan tarpeeseen. Asiakastarpeiden lisäksi markkinapuolen voimia ovat esimerkiksi uusiutuva, usein kiristyvä, regulaatio liittyen erityisesti eettisiin ja ympäristökysymyksiin.

Teknologian kehitys mahdollistaa muutoksen

Sensorit tarkkailevat ja lähettävät dataa lähes kaikkialla. Verkotettu ympäristömme (IoT, teollinen internet), linkittää laitteet internettiin ja datan pilveen. Data on raaka-ainetta, jota analysoimalla, jalostamalla, ja integroimalla luodaan uutta asiakasarvoa. Uusien teknologioiden integroiminen olemassa oleviin järjestelmiin ei ole välttämättä helppoa eikä nopeaa mutta se on mahdollista. Tekoäly ravistelee nykyrakenteita useilla toimialoilla. Jo nyt jonkinlaiseen älykkääseen toimintoon kykenevät laitteet oppivat ja optimoivat, ja samalla päätöksenteko (ihmisen tai koneen) perustuu yhä reaaliaikaisempaan tietoon. Tuotannon lisäksi muiden toimintojen automatisointi ja robotisointi etenee. Valmistusteknologia on kehittynyt niin että lights out -valmistus tai toisaalta hajautettu yksittäiskappaleiden valmistus (3D printing) ovat realistisia vaihtoehtoja.

Liiketoimintamalli yhdistää teknologian ja markkinoiden tarpeen

 

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Jotta liiketoimintamallien kehittämisessä ei tarvitse keksiä pyörää uudestaan, on järkevää hyödyntää jo olemassa olevaa tutkimusta* siitä, mitkä ovat ne liiketoimintamallin piirteet, joilla innovaatiot lyövät läpi. Myös VTT on edistänyt asiakkaidensa teknologian ja liiketoimintamallien kehittämistä käytännössä huomioiden liiketoimintamallien kriittiset piirteet:

  • Asiakaslähtöisyys, kustannustehokas personointi ja räätälöinti on ensimmäinen kriittinen tekijä, oli kyse sitten laajasta teknologisesta järjestelmästä tai digitaalista kuluttajapalvelusta. Teknologia mahdollistaa sen, että palveluiden kustannustehokas kustomointi on mahdollista reaaliajassa. Asiakas- ja käyttäjäkokemusta monimutkaisissa teknologisissa järjestelmissä on tutkittu esim. FIMECC UXUS-ohjelmassa ja asiakkaan palvelukokemus on yhtenä pääteemana Brand New -tutkimushankkeessa.
  • Kiertotalous, eli arvon kierron maksimointi ja resurssien käytön hidastaminen, sulkeminen ja kaventaminen eri keinoin, on toinen kriittinen tekijä. Kun toimitusketjun suunta muuttuu yksisuuntaisesta kiertäväksi, se luo mahdollisuuksia uudenlaiselle arvonluonnille ja muuttaa esim. logistisia ratkaisuja. Tähän systeemiseen murrokseen liiketoimintamalleissa löytyy työkaluja esimerkiksi Aarre-projektin aarrekartasta.
  • Resurssien tehokkaampi hyödyntäminen jakamalla on kolmas liiketoimintamallin kriittinen tekijä. Alalle pääsyn esteitä madaltavien ja kuluttajapuolella laajemmin hyödynnettyjen jakamistalouden mallien potentiaalia tutkitaan myös B2B-puolella teollisuudessa: SHARE -projektissa kehitetään konseptia digitaaliselle jakamisalustalle, jossa teolliset yritykset voivat helposti tehdä yhteistyötä sekä jakaa tietoa, tuotantokapasiteettia, resursseja, palveluita ja logistisia verkostoja.
  • Hinnoittelu- ja ansaintamalli eli se, miten asiakas saadaan maksamaan uudesta tuotteesta ja palvelusta, ja miten tehdään itse kannattavaa liiketoimintaa, on neljäs kriittinen tekijä ja liiketoimintamallin ydintä. Uudenlaiset digitaaliset ratkaisut (IoT, AI jne.) haastavat yrityksiä miettimään uudenlaisia ansaintalogiikoita ja vahvistamaan siirtymäänsä palveluliiketoiminnan suuntaan ja esimerkiksi jakamistalouteen liittyy tyypillisesti käyttöön perustuva hinnoittelu, jolloin omistaminen ja käyttö on erotettu toisistaan. Palvelukeskeisiä IoT-liiketoimintamalleja on tutkittu esim. DIMECC S4Fleet -ohjelmassa.
  • Viidentenä tekijänä on ekosysteeminäkökulma. Yrityksen menestys on yhä enemmän riippuvainen yhteistyöstä, muista yrityksistä ja kokonaisista ekosysteemeistä, jotka koostuvat toisiinsa dynaamisesti vaikuttavista ja vuorovaikutuksessa olevista yrityksistä. Vaikka liiketoimintamallin tarkoitus on määrittää yksittäisen yrityksen kilpailuetu, niin mallin linjaus ainakin asiakkaiden liiketoimintamallin kanssa on vähintäänkin järkevää. DIMECC REBUS -ohjelmassa kehitettiin yhteistoiminnallisia liiketoiminnan käytäntöjä ja Tekes_DEXTER-projektissa on kohteena toimitusketju eli digitaalinen laajennettu yritys.
  • Organisaation ketteryys ja joustavuus on kuudes liiketoimintamallin kriittinen tekijä. Ketteryys mahdollistaa nopean päätöksenteon ja joustavuus sopeutumisen toimintaympäristön muutoksiin. Rescas-projektissa on tutkittu yritysten muutosjoustavuutta (resilienssiä) eli miten kykyä ennakoida, reagoida ja oppia muuttuvissa olosuhteissa kehitetään ja miten organisaation jännitteitä voidaan itse asiassa käyttää muutoksen ja menestyksen lähteenä.

Kun liiketoimintamallissa yhdistyy oikea kombinaatio kriittisiä piirteitä, se mahdollistaa toimialaa uudistavan innovaation.

Lue lisää: www.vtt.fi/palvelut/liiketoiminnan-ekosysteemit

* Kavadias, S., Ladas, K., and Loch, C.H. (2016), The Transformative Business Model, Harvard Business Review, October 2016.

Tiina Valjakka VTT
Tiina Valjakka
Research Team Leader
Business ecosystems development, VTT
tiina.valjakka(a)vtt.fi
@TiinaValjakka

 

Taru Hakanen
Taru Hakanen
Research Team Leader
Business model transformation, VTT
taru.hakanen(a)vtt.fi

Getting lost among hype and buzzwords or finding future success in outcome economy?

Fast browsing through blogs and short articles on the outcome economy could provide terms and sentences that already sound very familiar – some of them you believe and perhaps some of you have already turned down. What’s new then? It depends. It is related to where you are now and where you have been – and more importantly where you would like to be.

What could we do better to realize the potential – and support competitiveness and the competitive advantage of the company and its ecosystem? There are – of course – multiple ways to do that. In this blog, I’ll take a mindset perspective – which to my mind means the way an organization continuously learns to take care of its core task in the changing activity environment and records it into its cultural heritage.

Keep on pursuing something new and if you find it, do not lose it!

Any hype or buzzword is not a bubble or success in the first place, but they all do carry renewal and innovation potential and thus new paths to create value for and with your customer. Adopting a cynical attitude towards yet another buzzword might sometimes be tempting. But do not let it prevent you from discovering something that is new for you or helps you to rediscover an old beloved idea (this might sometimes feel like meeting a good old friend), the timing of which just wasn’t right in the past, and strengthen it. (By the way, this applies both to business and to research).

Then again, if the hype or buzzwords just remain buzz, even though inspiring for a while, their real impact might even turn negative by preventing any forthcoming efforts to enliven people and get them interested. So you get impact, sure, but the direction is the opposite to that intended. The strengthened mindset might be like: “let’s play along but do not change anything important, they’ll turn around, right?”. Turning the hype and buzzwords into real guidance for strategic choices on business and actions, such as where to invest, what development and research programs to launch etc., in a particular firm in a particular situation with particular heritage, is not an easy task.

Drafting the idea of transformation in terms of business perceptions, R&D and management practices, technologies and customer relationships etc., as mirrors of the present and targeted culture provides the basis for discussions on the present and the preferred future. There might turn out to be a need for a proper critical evaluation of the present state of the business and development practices to start with. “Stealing” ideas and technologies from outside your industry and experimenting with those could be a good awakening. Stretching the idea of the “end-customer or end-user” of the whole system as far as possible and thinking of the preferred outcome in terms of experience offers a good framework for turning old thinking inside out. (See examples or a recent blog). Scanning potential business models together with your present rivals could take you even further into unexplored territory.

What could a new hype term or buzzword offer – what should you look for when starting the process?

  1. Open your eyes wide: Rethink your business – threats and opportunities. There is always room to do things differently.
  2. Scanning new technologies as enablers for renewing your business – particularly, you could seek ways to provide extraordinary experiences to end-users and customers or to demonstrate the outcomes to pursue in order to boost the construction of the business ecosystem.
  3. Redefine your identity and rethink your partners through new eyes. If you’d like to proceed, then it would be a good idea to share this openly and thus awake the interest of the others to join in.

Looking back: Finding your path for the treasure?

To demonstrate possible paths guided by the new buzzwords, I just picked up examples of related to user experience to illustrate possible lessons learned.

User experience (UX)

  • End-users and their experiences are also really important in B2B although the users are not normally the same people who make decisions on buying.
  • Experience driven development provides multiple ways to enhance your competitiveness.
  • Value is multidimensional, it includes subjective, personal and emotional aspects.

The typical progress could include UX strengthening the role of industrial design within the company and UX being first used for getting customer interest, sometimes with rather superficial solutions. One conclusion to be drawn is that becoming a market leader or staying in that position requires more than good products with more functions than your rivals, reasonable usability or more power, and better energy efficiency etc. This leads to discovering that focusing on end-user experiences opens up endless sources for innovations and differentiation. This is a good track to develop new collaborative and open methods to co-innovate with users and customers for future solutions. This way it could challenge the mindset to accept that there are still many people related issues (H2H) to work with, however practically unmeasurable (with reasonable costs), they are relevant in business and could be systemically developed for.

For an outcome economy, this provides good grounding to proceed and discover your way.  There is still huge treasure to be found for Finland’s export industry in robotization, automation and digitalization if looked at with new eyes – together!

If you are interested in considering this more, you can directly contact or meet us at Manufacturing Performance Days 2017, join or follow our seminar Creating the Future Success, Creating the Future Success” Tuesday 30th of May, at 8:30-12:00 and its results.

Maaria Nuutinen VTT

Maaria Nuutinen
Vice President, Business, innovation and foresight
Twitter: @MaariaNuutinen

Towards Outcome Economy – transforming Finnish industry

If our industry is not effective then the whole of Finland suffers! Industry is still our main source of growth and prosperity and forms the backbone of the Finnish economy. Our export industry also needs to be strong. We can’t just keep passing the same cash back and forth among ourselves.

So where will future growth come from?

Manufacturing still matters in Finland but we have to make things smart and they have to be outcome smart. In the future, product margins will come less from the sale of products and services as such and more from how customers can use those products and services to advance their businesses. Future products will be more like digital platforms that bundle data from the point of view of customer preferred outcomes. This industry shift towards customer outcomes has given rise to the term Outcome Economy.

To compete in this new economy, products, and the machines that make them, need to get smarter. The key to getting smarter will be cooperation and sharing.

Testing without too much investing

New platforms are needed to help small and medium-sized businesses even market entrants find new possibilities to grow – testing and piloting rapidly and without too much up-front investment. Can shared infrastructure be an example of an industrial sharing economy? Also even larger established companies need to start teaming up across the sectors into these new networked ecosystems that use big data and analytics to test new ways of doing things and to share value.

These new networks can be made up of customers, partners, suppliers, service providers, start-ups and even competitors. In this case, competitors working together in the spirit of “co-opetition” in the race to higher value creation. The challenge to success is that all the partners in the ecosystem need to be able to bring their own unique value-add while still staying aligned with the team and its shared outcomes.

Help desk for hard industries

Just as we as consumers might join a personal networks on social media to share or learn more from crowd knowledge, companies can also jump into partnership networks or sharing platforms at industry level.

At VTT, together with Tampere University, we’ve developed one such platform called SMACC (Smart Machines and Manufacturing Competence Centre) which is an open ecosystem designed to help companies discover new collaboration models as well as drive innovation and competitive advantage.

Finland well-positioned for leadership

Of course this kind of cooperation is not a new idea for Finland. The very successful Nokia inspired ICT cluster has already helped blur the once strict line between traditional industries and digital start ups. Both see the most potential in sharing their respective knowledge if they want to stay in the game. Finland has top-of-the-class vertical capabilities in many sectors combined with a strong exportable ICT sector. Put that together with Finland’s extensive knowledge networks and cutting edge research and we are positioned not just to transform our own economy but to disrupt and transform the world.

Call to action!

Outcome Economy is the main theme of the upcoming Manufacturing Performance Days event in Tampere May 29 to 31, which VTT is part of. The big question we’ll be asking there is: How can the Outcome Economy accelerate the transformation of the Finnish manufacturing sector, especially for our small and medium-sized businesses? If you’re in business ask yourself, where is your customer value coming from? How do you think outcome economy will change your game? Are you ready to change?

Erja Turunen VTT

Erja Turunen
Executive Vice President, Smart industry and energy systems

Continue reading

Ecosystems and platforms are the bases of success in the era of outcome economy

The outcome economy is a shift from competing by products and services to competing by measurable results valued by the customer. Delivering outcomes often demands innovating and problem-solving above the level of an individual product or solution and companies must work together to meet the needs of customers. In other words, outcome-focused business typically requires bundling resources from several actors, i.e. resource integration and value co-creation highlighted also in service-dominant-logic.

New opportunities to measure performance (outcome) have arrived on the scene in the shape of technology boosting industrial Internet or IoT (Internet of Things). IoT enables novel uses of data and companies have become aware of that they actually deliver outcome and it will more and more drive the competition. Digital platforms can collect and analyse data from bundled solutions and ensure that outcome commitments are met.

Despite of the hype around data and platform, customer understanding is the key for success also in the outcome economy: companies have to know the customers’ business inside out, commencing with understanding what the customers are really looking for and what outcomes really matter. Different resources will have to be pulled together, in collaboration with the customers as well as the suppliers and service providers, also to make this work together. Then, the ecosystem can enable to better address a customer need, as it can bring a diverse set of capabilities and innovation to the solution very quickly (see Figure below).

Outcome through value co-creation in a ecosystem

Outcome through value co-creation in a ecosystem.

All the partners in the ecosystem must have something unique, which is providing value for the customer by itself – but is concurrently aligned with joint objectives and complement the aimed outcome. Across many industries, the battle comes true between the ecosystems. This will comprise networks of collaborators, including customers, partners, suppliers, service providers, start-ups and competitors turned to “co-opetitors”. All ecosystem actors should collectively and transparently amplify the value creation opportunities for all participants, and solve problems and share out responsibilities if one or more parts of the system flop.

Ecosystems and platforms are not only for startups but it is essential also incumbent firms to shift their business practices and begin thinking in terms of ecosystems. One of the first steps to this direction is to consider the digital platforms bundling data from the viewpoint of customers’ desired outcomes, i.e. to understand how the data can be valuable to customers’ business. Another, crucial viewpoint is to consider outcome at the ecosystem level, i.e. explore what are the resource bundles that together provide the outcomes that meet customers’ expectations.


VTT is participating in the Manufacturing Performance Days 2017 – Welcome to join us at May 29–31 in Tampere, Finland!

Learn more about our activities in the event (SMACC laboratory visit and “Creating the Future Success” seminar) here. You can also register to the event.

In Twitter, follow #mpdays!


Katri Valkokari VTT

Katri Valkokari, Research manager
Twitter: @valkatti 

Tiina Valjakka VTT

Tiina Valjakka, Research Team Leader 
Twitter: @TiinaValjakka