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The Eventful Group has recently completed an extensive research initiative across the North American chemical industry, including interviews with executive leadership, senior management, functional and technology professionals from all major industry segments. The research organizations spanned the spectrum from small and mid-market to super-major and specialty chemical manufacturers. Supplementing these research interviews was a three-stop tour across North America where three customer-led focus groups were conducted with over 30 unique chemical companies taking part.

So what keeps chemical executives and functional and technical professionals up at night? In a series of blogs I will elaborate a bit more on strategic imperatives for the chemical industry as result from this research and key questions to be answered in context with those imperatives.

1. Evolution through Digital Transformation

With the emergence of the Internet of Things (IoT) and through leveraging the convergence of IT/OT, the new digital economy is taking shape at a rapid pace. Connecting suppliers with customers with an emphasis on driving value from customer data – the community is seeing a core focus on the ability to accelerate real time business processing capabilities and increasing the speed of alignment and communication to enable timely decisions. However, it is important to note that not all chemical companies are ready to transform or merely view those actions as being “transformative". Organizations understand that anything that can enable efficiency and profitability is generally welcome, however, some organizations find it challenging to clearly define the exact business value of following industry trends.

  • How are organizations developing the business case for digital transformation and what are the best tools for analyzing a return on investment and developing a strong understanding of business value?
  • How do different organizations define the digital transformation evolution? What is accepted as best practice? What are the evidenced cases studies?
  • Are all organizations ready to digitize? How do we know if our organization is equipped to begin digitizing?
  • Is there a successful use case where digitization and capitalizing on the cloud and big data has made the organization systematically more profitable and/or efficient?
  • The rate of change is accelerating and costs are continuing to drop –how is this new dynamic increasing the speed of implementing new processes and technologies?
  • How do we take in and combine disparate data sets and manage systems most effectively to drive ease of access to actionable information and increase intimacy with customers?
  • How can our workflows and speed of execution be enabled by the transformation?
  • What is the role of real-time access to data in driving efficiency and profitability?
  • How can a greater understanding of and access to customer knowledge be the differentiating value proposition for the sales force?

Are you asking yourself the same questions? Please get in touch and share your thoughts with us.

Finding answers to these and many more questions will also be part of our SAP Best Practices for Chemicals Conference on March 14-16, 2016, at the Woodlands Waterway, Texas.

We look forward to see you there!

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