April 13, 2017
Forrester Vice President and Research Director Pascal Matzke examines the rise of industrial digital platforms and how they are changing businesses and creating new and powerful products and markets.
Pascal Matzke, Vice President, Research Director
We have seen the rise of the digital platforms: eBay, Facebook, Etsy, Uber, Airbnb, and the list goes on. These digital platforms — the vast majority of which are consumer-facing — have disrupted existing markets and created new market economics.
If they are the earthquake disrupting B2C markets, then emerging industrial digital platforms will be the tsunami that will reshape B2B markets.
Orderly, linear, transactional, and often silo-oriented supply chains, production processes, distribution processes, and operational structures have been the bedrock of industrial markets for decades. But the same forces disrupting consumer markets — empowered customers with high expectations for personalization, a constant wave of digital innovations, and severe business pressures to be agile to defend against business disruption — have invaded industrial markets.
Industrial digital platforms are remaking supply chain, production, and operational processes as priorities shift from controlling costs and driving efficiencies to addressing customer demands for mass customization, adapting to dynamic markets, and embedding innovation wherever possible. Platforms have unlocked the power of data, converting it from distributed islands of data locked in local systems and equipment to a powerful currency creating new products, markets, and economics. They are changing the very nature of how things are made and how business works. In this episode, Pascal Matzke gives clarity to the industrial tsunami and digital platforms, discussing what they are, how they work, and how far we’ve come in short order. Pascal gives a reasoned and passionate argument for a simple yet profound truth: The combination of customer and digital forces is creating a tectonic shift in the bedrock of global industrial markets.