November 2022

A Joint Look into the Future of Strategy Management

At the Evolutionizer User Circle 2022, customers and developers shared success stories and an outlook on future challenges.

Innovative success stories and the future of digital strategy – being discussed in person again: Many companies such as Rohde & Schwarz, secunet, Gerresheimer, Freudenberg and BayWa R.E. followed our invitation to Düsseldorf to share their experiences with the Enterprise Strategy Suite.

Process simplifications and time savings in practical use

Interesting insights into their strategic operation were offered by Bekaert and BayWa Renewable Energy with their use case presentations. "We are only at the beginning of our transformation, so we wanted a flexibly configurable tool," said Joseph Karedan, Technology Lead at Bekaert. His company has digitized its innovation pipeline with the help of the Enterprise Strategy Suite. "We wanted to make strategic decisions based on reliable data, from the potential of individual ideas to the actual added value of innovation initiatives and the return on investment."

In particular, the Solution Strategic Program Management has helped the company to make information usable beyond the boundaries of individual business units: from an inconsistent and non-transparent database – "distributed over a large number of Excel sheets" – to a functioning single-point-of-truth system, explained Karedan. The increased degree of collaboration between individual business units can also be observed as a particularly positive effect. "Through transparent summary insights, our teams learn from each other, recognize and use synergy effects independently and communicate much more with each other than before."

The generalist approach to data management with the Enterprise Strategy Suite was also a key advantage for BayWa R.E., as Corporate Strategy Manager Keith Punzalan emphasized in his presentation. In particular, the AI-supported word cloud functionalities enabled enormous time savings during the development of a new strategy process within the company. "For example, the evaluation of the SWOT and Five Forces analyses worked much better than digging through more than 60 Excel sheets from our participating colleagues."

The next step is a broader integration of the Enterprise Strategy Suite within the company, "beyond the strategy team, in order to extend the advantages of the platform to other management areas and business units". In this context, further process standardization within the company is to be promoted, explained Punzalan. "If we achieve that, then we can fully leverage the potential of this unified platform."

Using AI and machine learning to combat increasing complexity

In addition to important milestones and joint successes of the past year, Evolutionizer CCO Martin Erharter looked at the future of digital strategy management with the Enterprise Strategy Solution. One focus is on the goal of enabling companies to remain able to act and compete even in times of crisis with adaptive strategy.  

"The multiple challenges we are currently facing have led to the point that classic strategy methods no longer work," explained Erharter. Strategy must increasingly be understood as a continuous process. This is precisely where technological progress also offers great advantages in management, for example in involving as many people as possible in the company and being able to use their know-how for strategic decisions. This is possible, even if the people involved work with strategy processes less often – but they must be provided with the right instruments.

In order not to lose sight of the main goals with this increased focus on collaboration, the increasing complexity of organizations must be managed at crucial nodes. This is already happening with supporting technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning. In this way, in addition to the analysis of quantitative data, more and more qualitative information can be made usable. The long-term anchoring of strategic work in the company is ultimately the most effective method to be able to react to increasingly uncertain business environments and unpredictable scenarios, emphasized Erharter. "We believe that digital tools, such as those we provide with the Enterprise Strategy Suite, are the only way to meet today's needs."

Valuable feedback and outlook on the future of digital strategy management

The other participants of the User Circle also took the opportunity to exchange their experiences and requirements for modern digital strategy management. Meeting and getting feedback from long-standing and new customers is particularly valuable for the Evolutionizer development teams in order to be able to optimally respond to the needs of the users with the next development steps. And what could be better than being able to do this with a joint boat tour and dinner at the end of the first day of the event, thanks to the return of the User Circle in person?

The importance of user feedback was also evident when Ian Henderson, VP Product Management at Evolutionizer, gave an outlook on the upcoming roadmap. In addition to UX improvements and further developments of features such as My Cockpit and the next generation of Gantt charts, a new, more dynamic variant of the Strategy Workboards gathered particular interest. Evolutionizer customers can look forward to these features the coming releases. "Especially in the area of user interfacing, we noticed that we had to get better here," Henderson emphasized. "We've achieved that, and we're still improving, especially by working closely with our existing user base."

This connection will continue to be maintained in the future – gladly also at the next Evolutionizer User Circle 2023.

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