Remote work is becoming the new normal for many businesses, and it requires a new way of monitoring and managing for executives. Many decision-makers still rely on historical reporting and business intelligence dashboards to make day-to-day operational decisions.
For many of these decision-makers in asset-intensive industries, it also meant that you walk the factory floor, let experts inspect equipment to monitor its condition, and talk to machine operators to find out what is happening.
This approach worked for 80 percent of businesses that are either average or below-average performers. But this all changed as the recent Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic blindsided these organizations. Governments implemented “social distancing” measures and these “average” organizations were not prepared to have a remote workforce that couldn’t walk the plant to gather intelligence and make situationally aware decisions. Their Digital Twins were comprised of historical dashboards and spreadsheets with stale data about past performance. It is kind of like having your parents reminisce about “the good old days”.
In contrast, executives are glued to real-time newsfeeds on the pandemic. They watch stock market updates and look for signals that will impact their business survival as never seen before events happen. They subscribe to real-time feeds and collaborate remotely using live chat and video conferencing on the best next steps or recommendation actions. They are not using BI dashboards to analyze what happened. They are looking for insight and foresight, not hindsight.
Complacent Business Intelligence practices lead to low levels of situational awareness. Complacency is a major cause of chronic laziness, and for business, this is no different. Situational laziness and “Management By Dashboards” numbs the organizational senses to what is happening right now, what is likely to happen, and what is an appropriate response.
In the past, the focus was more on “what were the sales per store last month/year”. They now require a new level of intelligence on “what is the real-time demand at each store and do we have too much/too little, just the right level” to optimize current conditions or events.
The pandemic will pass, but it will change how executives will revisit their strategic readiness for real-time events. We have access to vast volumes of real-time data coming into businesses at sub-second intervals. But we never built strategic capabilities around this, until now. This brings me to the most productive remote worker in the workforce of the future, the real-time, event-aware Digital Twin, or Event Twin.
This Digital Twin can virtually walk around your business, collect real-time data or “signals”, find the key events that will impact business operations, and pass it to decision-makers at the right time, in an unbiased, forward-looking way. An Event Twin not only provides insights into what is happening right now, but it can also predict what is likely to occur with the right analytics. It is like running a “Lights Out” factory for your whole business. Decision-makers can work remotely and “see” what is happening in real-time through the eyes of the Event Digital Twin.
Event Intelligence through event-aware Digital Twins will be the most valuable decision support investment organizations will make post the pandemic.