How do you solve a problem like Anastasia?
By Steve Walker on Apr 09, 2014
A guest post from Peter Rae, Head of Corporate Communications for Oracle ECEMEA, about the Oracle CloudWorld event in Moscow, on April 8 2014
Keeping the me-here-now generation happy means building your business around the customer – with new technology.
Russia’s businessmen attending Oracle CloudWorld in Moscow yesterday listened, possibly with growing dislike, to a description of Anastasia. She is the new generation of customer; the customer that wants to shop all day, find exactly what they want immediately but have the goods delivered at their own convenience. She’s a person who thinks that because she has a smart device she can dictate how she lives, and anyone coming into contact with her had better give her what she wants the way she wants it if they want to keep her as a customer.
Companies need to listen to their customers, predict what they need and respond with great service – quickly. With a customer like Anastasia – and there are millions of Anastasias – the bald truth is that only companies with more powerful, faster, newer IT systems will satisfy her. A daunting prospect for a CIO, perhaps, but at CloudWorld delegates learned that if they do it right, that infrastructure will be more cost effective to run, require lower maintenance, deliver better performance and possess the agility to change as quickly as Anastasia changes her mind.
CloudWorld attendees in Moscow listened to stories of customers who had made that change – Nike, Maersk, Aeroflot – big names with new technology and new ways of engaging with their customers. Social listening, big data analysis, mobile applications, engineered systems, cloud computing – all new technologies, all working together to satisfy Anastasia, and at the same time delivering more profit and more efficiency.
This is the first time in the history of IT that consumers are dictating what technologies businesses need to acquire, and conference delegates were reminded that the enormous elephant that is IT transformation is eaten one bite at a time. The road to customer-centric IT is now well sign-posted. Businesses cannot afford to resist the new technology wave, but they can choose how they start out on their ride.