A vast array of technology advancements has quickly coalesced to create a smart and connected world. The advent of cutting edge digital technology including big data and analytics, artificial intelligence and machine learning, analytics and the cheap availability of bandwidth, reliable networks and storage are catalyzing an extraordinary revolution in how manufacturers can engage with their customers. Suddenly, by leveraging these technologies, manufacturers have the opportunity to move from producing low-margin products to creating highly personalized relationships with customer as well as exploring new revenue streams.

The change is acute in the automobile industry. Using connected systems, data analytics and automation, it is possible to achieve operational velocity that was unheard of before. Digital technologies are bringing the buyer, channel partner (dealer) and the auto manufacturer closer than ever before, providing a seamless personalized omni-channel experience to the customer across web and dealership channels.

A case in point is the retail-consumer transformation program that Mindtree is engaged with a large automobile manufacturer that has resulted in re-imagining the dealer sales and after-sales service operations. Today, an auto buyer can begin the search for a vehicle on the web then see online ads to drive those potential buyers to our customer’s website. Here the buyer can configure his/her SUV by specifying the model, color, options and accessories and be directed to the nearest dealer based on current availability. Before heading to the dealer, the buyer can also choose specific offers, like financing, insurance and after-sales service programs.

Then, when the buyer arrives at the showroom, the sales associate they see is equipped with every detail of their query. The sale can be closed within a few minutes of the buyer arriving at the dealership. After the vehicle purchase, real-time information around various vehicle conditions (oil and fluid levels, maintenance needs, battery condition, service history, etc.) is passed to the service partner who can then send personalized offers for specific services to the buyer. Simultaneously, a dedicated online owner site for the buyer is updated with the status of the car and sends alerts to the owner. This connection across the three ecosystems of the buyer, the dealer and the auto manufacturer in a real-time data-driven manner is what will drive the future of automotive buying and servicing.

This consumer experience transformation is not only enabled by transformation of consumer engagement mechanisms like product owner sites, brand sites and dealer sites but also the integration of traditionally disparate functions like distribution and logistics, sales, marketing, after sales parts and service and finance divisions within the manufacturing enterprise. Many of these groups are often dictated by various regulatory guidelines in addition to having technology silos that result in significant challenges in communicating accurately and in a timely manner between each other. Those challenges can be solved through an enterprise-wide digital transformation that embraces connected manufacturing operations, asset and product management, dealer operations, marketing, sales, after-sales and complex regulatory environments using big data, analytics and automation.

This digital transformation in manufacturing is exciting and is the most significant change that the industry has seen throughout its history. Recent outcomes indicate that manufacturers are transforming their entire value chains from warehousing, supply chain management, logistics, distribution, customer engagement and new service creation for the connected customer in all environments – B2B, B2C and so on. This is happening with the active assistance of partners such as Mindtree that have a deep understanding of emerging digital technologies coupled with domain-specific experience. To understand how your manufacturing enterprise can approach digital transformation for customer engagement, click here.

Editor’s note: This is a sponsored post from Mindtree.