Innovation & technology

Do your innovations create value for customers - or just novelty?

Seventy percent of US CEOs are anticipating changes to their innovation capabilities. The definition of innovation has widened to include not only R&D that underpins new technologies, products and services but also business processes and business models. Each aspect of the business is fair game for reinvention, and CEOs are leading innovation on multiple fronts.

For example, some companies are commercializing new technologies on a large scale in fast-growing markets that have “leapfrogged” costly legacy infrastructures; think smart grids and mobile health solutions. Others are leading low-cost innovations for price-conscious consumers overseas and bringing those product and process discoveries back to their home markets.

 


Featured innovation & technology insights

 

Downloads: We the urban people

Downloads: We the urban people

 

10Minutes on service provider transparency

Businesses depend on service providers to handle confidential data, run essential business processes, and manage critical technology. This can leave businesses vulnerable to service provider breakdowns. The result can be the providers’ clients violating regulations and even losing customer trust. Yet many businesses may know less than they realize about their service providers’ controls. This 10Minutes discusses how SOC 2 and SOC 3 reports can give businesses the picture they need to have solid confidence in their service providers.

 

The mindful CIO

Extend your core applications, data, and infrastructure to better serve the cognitive processes of knowledge workers.

 

Using digital body language to transform applications

Chris Leone and Steven Woods of Oracle forecast how digital body language, mobile form factors, and the cloud will reshape enterprise applications.

 

Integration-ready applications

Pat Garrehy of Rootstock Software forecasts how integration-ready applications will enable users to create their own interfaces to fit their work.

 

User mindsets are driving the future of applications

Jonathan Becher, Rishi Diwan, and Sami Muneer of SAP describe how they use design thinking to understand user mindsets and tap into new sources of value creation.

 

The convergence of mobile, cloud, and desktop apps

Sam Liu of Partnerpedia explains how the world of mobile and cloud apps will converge with the world of desktop apps.

 

Why apps are adjusting to the user

Isaac Sacolick of McGraw Hill Construction explains how personalized apps create business value.

 

The future of enterprise apps: Moving beyond workflows to mindflows

Empower the human factor through mindful apps.

 

Elevating user experience

Bill Murphy of Blackstone describes why the user experience is an underappreciated critical success factor.

 

Technologies that enable mindful apps

Emerging techniques and technologies that enable enterprises to design, develop, and deploy mindful apps.

 

10Minutes on transforming the tax function

It’s an opportunity hidden in plain sight. In 10Minutes on transforming the tax function, we discuss how the tax function is often overlooked as an area for improvement, unlike more obvious choices such as supply chain or business services. However, shining a light on the tax group can reveal untapped opportunities where changes in technology, process, people, and data can lead to benefits for the broader business.

 

PwC 2013 APEC CEO Survey

PwC's report, building on a survey of more than 370 business leaders and interviews from across the region, confirms the necessity of regional cooperation for our companies' futures.

 

10Minutes on drug value

Pharmaceutical companies stand ready to be tested in a world where a drug’s success is more closely tied to its performance. The challenges mount with competition from generics and growing pressure to reduce costs. Now, insurers and integrated providers are driven by models that reward health outcomes and cost savings. For success, drug makers are exploring real-world evidence, new payment models, and the right partnerships.

 

CIO leadership in post-transaction relationships: IT’s role in customer engagement

By evolving IT to focus on the end customer, CIOs have the opportunity to be key partners in helping their businesses break new ground.

 

Enabling the end-to-end retail experience

Dominic Morea of First Data shares how the future of the retail industry is going beyond the transaction.

 

Creating the health feed

Walter De Brouwer of Scanadu forecasts how advances in sensing will give access to our personal health feed and transform healthcare.

 

Becoming a service company

Macario Namie of Jasper Wireless explains how to capitalize on the Internet of Things (IoT) opportunities.

 

Digitizing product use

Jim Ingrassia of Konica-Minolta shares how digitizing the use of its products was a source of competitive advantage.

 

Aligning customer and enterprise goals

Fred Cripe shares how Internet of things will shift the insurance business from loss compensation to loss control by helping customers achieve their goals.

 

Augmenting reality

Daan Roosegaarde, an artist and an innovator, shares the importance of merging physical and digital realities into seamless, intuitive experiences.

 

The Thing Stack: Technologies that guide customers to their goals

Emerging technologies continue to bring down the cost and complexity of adding networked sensors to products and services, accelerating their integration and driving new customer value....

 

Internet of Things: Evolving transactions into relationships

This issue of the Technology Forecast examines the impact of Internet of Things trends on businesses and the IT organization. It analyzes how businesses now have the ability to continue the relationship with customers after the sales transaction by helping them achieve the goals for which they buy the products.

 

Using technology to help customers achieve their goals

Businesses that embed capabilities to understand usage in their products in service of customers’ goals stand to reap unparalleled value.

 

Cities of Opportunity: Analysis and forecast of global urban economic centers: PwC

Download the 2012 edition of PwC’s Cities of Opportunity. This year’s report, our fifth, analyses in depth the trajectory of 27 capitals of finance, commerce, manufacturing and/or culture across 60 variables -- and offers insight into what factors and conditions make cities function best, plus customized, interactive tools for exploring the data.

 

Cities of Opportunity: Analysis and forecast of global urban economic centers: PwC

Download the 2012 edition of PwC’s Cities of Opportunity. This year’s report, our fifth, analyses in depth the trajectory of 27 capitals of finance, commerce, manufacturing and/or culture across 60 variables -- and offers insight into what factors and conditions make cities function best, plus customized, interactive tools for exploring the data.

 

Creating a platform

Laura Merling and John Musser of Alcatel-Lucent share how enterprises can use APIs to create platforms from existing assets to unlock new value.

 

Getting into the customer’s context

Devon Biondi of Mashery details how APIs allow businesses to engage with customers in their context.

 

The digital indirect channel

Why APIs are of strategic importance to all businesses: Technology forecast: PwC

 

The rising value of linked information

Mark Noworolski and Peter Leiser of Streetline detail how they are transforming the parking ecosystem with cloud, mobility, and analytics technologies using RESTful APIs.

 

Users as partners

Brian Katz of Sanofi discusses how consumerization of IT means enterprise IT should treat users as partners.

 

APIs: An architecture for speed at AT&T

John Donovan, Sanjay Macwan and Jacob Feinstein of AT&T detail how the API program is a driver of speed in their innovation efforts.

 

Closing the loop on sustainability information

We’ve identified four key emerging information technology areas that directly affect enterprise sustainability. These areas span the lifecycle of information—from where it is created to where it is reported.

 

How does one tax the cloud?

From a tax perspective, client service professionals must stay informed about potential changes in state tax policies regarding the tax treatment of the various cloud computing platforms.

 

Raising your digital IQ: PwC's 4th Annual Digital IQ Survey

The 4th Annual Digital IQ Survey includes respondents from nearly 500 US companies about the current state of their technology-related activities and plans for the future.

 

Medical innovation

The way we assess value in medical technology is changing radically. Payers are refusing to pay for incremental innovations that do not significantly improve health or reduce cost.

 

Protecting your brand in the cloud: Transparency and trust through enhanced reporting

Cloud computing is making deep inroads into the marketplace, but organizations are concerned about risks regarding security, privacy, availability, data protection and retention. Any one of these could damage a company’s business and its brand. How can the risks impact companies’ brands and how can third-party assurance provide a solution?

 

WSJ CEO Council: New approaches to global health

Improving health conditions and offering greater access to care around the world will require a new set of tools, including public-private partnerships, emerging technologies and evolving regulation.

 

WSJ CEO Council: Encouraging and protecting business innovation

From the education of global talent pools, to national immigration policies, regulation and international intellectual property protections, the public policy issues on the new innovation landscape are abundant and complex.

 

10Minutes on the boardroom agenda

In this short report, PwC discusses new governance regulations, new risks, and issues of executive compensation and succession planning.

 

Sustainability: Moving from compliance to leadership

Sustainability is moving from “something that’s nice to have” to one of the most important strategic initiatives enterprises will undertake in the coming decade—a practice deeply embedded in the organization.

 

Systematizing sustainability

In this interview, David Kepler, who leads both Dow Chemical’s IT and sustainability functions, discusses how Dow synthesizes the metrics that integrate environmental and social concerns with economic value and strategy.

 

Tapping information to drive sustainability

In this interview, Peter Graf, SAP’s chief sustainability officer, explains how sustainability is about long-term business models, and details what CIOs can do to give their organizations an edge.

 

Raising awareness with energy management

SunGard sustainability director Ryan Whisnant details his company’s deep and longstanding commitment to sustainability, and its many benefits—from improving competitiveness and reducing risk to being a good corporate citizen.

 

Transforming energy value chains for sustainability

Pat House, SVP for strategy at C3, discusses how volatile energy costs and stakeholder pressures are creating a new mandate to make energy and emissions optimization a top management priority.

 

Embedding sustainability into everyday actions

In this interview, Intel IT director Chris Peters discusses how Intel is greening its data center and focusing on transitioning sustainability from a program to a mind-set.

 

The CIO’s next leadership opportunity: Sustainability

CIOs can demonstrate natural leadership with sustainability—by surfacing information that can educate, motivate, and catalyze decision-making, and by using metrics and other IT tools to embed sustainability practices throughout the organization.

 

Managing energy for sustainability

In this fascinating interview, Amit Chatterjee and Michael Gelobter of Hama Software demonstrate how optimizing energy expense can be a transformational force that can shape your business toward sustainability.

 

The CIO’s role in social enterprise strategy

Social technology offers considerable promise, but CIOs and business units are struggling to figure out how to use it effectively. A key reason is that most social media outside the enterprise is just pure communication. Making the same use of these tools inside the enterprise only imposes more channels on already overwhelmed staff. What alternatives exist to help alleviate communications overload?

 

Enterprise success with emerging social technology

Mention social technology or social networking, and most people think of consumer-driven applications such as Twitter or Facebook. But some organizations realize that Facebook, Twitter, and their secured equivalents inside the enterprise are just a catalyst for deeper changes that must be made to collaboration tools and methods. So what are the changes companies need to make to improve things?

 

Harnessing the power of the graph

Keith Griffin is lead architect for Cisco Systems' enterprise collaboration platform business unit. In this interview he talks about how emerging social and graph data technology can remove barriers to more effective collaboration.

 

Enterprise success with emerging social technology

Sameer Patel of Sovos Group places social technology in the context of software that enterprises already use. In this interview, he outlines some of the more recent challenges companies have been facing on the collaboration front. "The true value of enterprise social computing will come from bringing data, content, and people together in the context of business activities," he says.

 

Why collaboration hasn’t changed much—yet

What are the essentials that still need to emerge to create real improvements in enterprise collaboration? Recently retired PwC chief innovation officer Sheldon Laube focuses on the challenges of collaboration — especially as teams get larger and more distributed — and offers some ideas for solution.

 

Building a new learning environment around social tools

Tony O’Driscoll is executive director, Center for Technology, Entertainment and Media, Fuqua School of Business at Duke University. His business background includes previous leadership positions in the strategy and change consulting practice at IBM Global Services and at Nortel Networks. His most recent book, Learning in 3D: Adding a New Dimension to Enterprise Learning and Collaboration, which he co-authored with Karl M. Kapp, was published in 2010. Here he aligns social technology’s strengths with the way people learn today.

 

Adding social networking to business workflow

In this interview, Tim Young of Socialcast considers how blending activity streams with existing applications can open the door to behavioral change inside enterprises.

 

The anytime, anywhere business opportunity

No longer viewed as a strictly consumer phenomenon, smart devices enabled by wireless data networks are getting down to business. Companies operating within all kinds of value chains are embracing them to improve processes, enhance collaboration, and reduce costs. But those benefits are only the beginning. Where do the real payoffs come from for companies using them?

 

Making over healthcare

While there’s still a great deal of uncertainty around the specifics of healthcare reform, one thing’s clear: The healthcare industry in the US will never be the same. And 2011 is shaping up to be a makeover year for healthcare providers, health insurers, pharmaceutical and life sciences companies, and employers. But what are the most significant issues in play? A recent report identifies six.

 

Measuring innovation

What is innovation? And how do you measure and benchmark it in your organization, be it private, public or academic?

 

Striking the innovation balance

History is littered with companies that have failed to innovate, but innovation is now climbing to the top of the CEO agenda as a primary strategy for achieving profitable growth in a post-crisis economy. Is your company innovating to its full potential -- and what are the tensions that most affect a company’s ability to innovate successfully?

 

The technology powering business mobility

Operating systems, devices, wireless networks, and other IT components all comprise business mobility. But the real power lies in the convergence of the technologies and in how each organization applies them to redefine the way it works. While the chief information officer will lead the charge here, it's important that the rest of the leadership team understand the choices and issues that pertain to the following technology building blocks.