ISSUE #65 – Patrick de Moustier (pictured below), Managing Director of Accenture shares about the company’s new Digital Hub in Singapore and how it works with museums, banks, plantations and start-ups.
CONGRATULATIONS ON A SUCCESSFUL LAUNCH! WHAT IS THE IDEA BEHIND THE ACCENTURE DIGITAL HUB?
The Accenture Digital Hub is designed to help businesses adapt to the massive changes that consumers, companies and the market on the whole are facing.
Let’s start with consumers. They expect to be dazzled. They want magic and excellence at every touch point. They expect to be empowered and to be given new digital choices. And they expect transparency and digital security. Businesses thus find themselves needing to deliver better services.
Moreover, much is changing within business organisations. Traditionally, roles such as the chief information officer, chief marketing officer and the more recently created chief digital officer, were siloed. Now the lines are blurred thanks to a significant shift in technology. That means companies must adopt their internal structures to adapt and many, quite frankly aren’t ready for that.
Meanwhile, the market is shifting. We often talk about how companies need to embrace eco-system partners to describe part of what is happening. This is when cross-industry businesses work together to provide new, hitherto unthought-of services. For instance, think of apps for ride sharing, and the variety of industries involved in making that a new reality. Competition is springing up from non-traditional corners (think of how Alibaba created Alipay to offer new services to shoppers). This means that companies need to have what we call a connected customer vision. And they need to transform that vision of what the customer wants into a service they can deliver.
Our digital hub is a place to create that business value for our customers to help them help their customers. It is where we can help companies deliver unique propositions through evolving services. It is where we can help companies fend off aggressive competition by creating business value for their customers.
The Accenture Digital Hub Singapore was designed and built to both meet today’s demands and adapt to the needs of a future workforce, which will be far more digitally driven and flexible than today’s workforce.
Our purpose-built space enables our employees to connect easily with one another and with clients as they configure meeting and work spaces and tap into what people and skills are at their disposal. This is a working space that allows us to create together with our clients and partners.
This edition of FOCUS explores the start-up ecosystem in Singapore. What does Accenture look for when collaborating with start-ups?
Accenture uses an open innovation model. That means we source innovation from both inside our organisation and externally, which includes a network of start-ups. We constantly look for start-ups that have state-of-the-art solutions around data sciences, applied intelligence, data and insight visualisations, immersive technology (Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality and Mixed Reality), internet of things (IoT), blockchain, and quantum computing. The Digital Hub caters to all, across any industry, who are keen to invent, co-create, and apply disruptive solutions to help transform their businesses in today’s digital economy.
The engagement process at the Accenture Digital Hub is customisable according to the individual needs of our clients and the partners with whom we work. It can range from a few hours where our partners can tour the facility and gain a better understanding of our capabilities, to working on a business case for weeks and months, working together to build solid concept prototypes and conduct commercial implementation at scale.
What is the landscape like in digital transformation in Singapore? Are there certain sectors and domains that excite you?
Technology stands to transform the way we work and live, and raises many questions about the opportunities, as well as challenges. We believe that the impact of these innovations will be positive, because the power lies with people. It’s not just about automating the work people do, but about amplifying human potential. Technologies like AI will liberate us from process-oriented tasks to concentrate on more human, creative and judgement-based work.
Across different sectors and domains, the Accenture Digital Hub Singapore collaborates and innovates with various organisations:
Health and Public Sector and the Smart Nation agenda: the Accenture Digital Hub will help further Singapore’s Smart Agenda in the areas of advanced analytics, design thinking, customer experience and emerging technologies such as blockchain;
Resources: industries such as agriculture and petrochemicals have invested in cutting-edge advanced applied intelligence, predictive analytics, to improve operator efficiency, running costs and ability to derive at smarter outcomes;
For example, we deployed drones to reduce man hours across a plantation, consolidating data points and areas of risks to help the client operate more efficiently;
We helped the National Gallery create an immersive user experience to enjoy art and heritage, leveraging the latest digital solutions.
Financial services:Fintech is disrupting traditional banking in Singapore. As we’ve seen in media reports, there was a large bank that converted an old data centre in Singapore into an innovation hub, putting together user experience designers, researchers, relationship managers, architects and change management specialists all in one open-plan room. Another bank also invested in numerous accelerators and hackathons, with the goal to operate like a 22,000-people start-up to keep up with Asia’s dynamic financial ecosystem;
Products: To understand buyer patterns and offer more personalised experiences to consumers, leading consumer goods companies and retailers are employing advanced analytics and design thinking to understand the individual better, to drive sales via the multi-channel platforms offered online and offline.
Interview with Patrick de Moustier, Managing Director, Accenture
Published in FOCUS Magazine — Issue #1 2018 “Ready? Start-Up. Go!”