Predicting and preventing business disruption – a goal reached by information, research, strategy & flexibility

May 4, 2018
SAP Sphinx IT business future digital disruption

We ran into a recent HBR article on business disruption. Industry disruption as presented there may apply to any business, regardless of its size. It may also happen sooner than you think, if you, as a business owner, are not in touch with the phenomenon, or you have underestimated its reach or timeline.

Defining disruptions (industry/business/economic)

HBR goes with a would-be/trading-places definition in which disruption potentially allows “a smaller company with fewer resources is able to successfully challenge established incumbent businesses”.
However, the publication considers that industrial disruption is less dangerous, since it is reasonably predictable. Once concerned with this subject, and investing strategy and research in meeting it, the organizations can foresee what comes next and adapt, to avoid failure.
To visualize a useful starting point, they use Accenture’s Disruptability Index. Their research served in positioning 20 industry sectors — and 98 segments within those sectors — against two axes.

The coordinates of business disruption

As we mentioned above, the figure from the HBR article makes “current disruption” and “susceptibility to future disruption” into two axes, positioning various types of industries in the four quadrants determined by these two axes.

The quadrants are entitled as such:
–    Durability
–    Viability
–    Volatility
–    Vulnerability

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Image credit: HBR

Each quadrant gets a certain type of businesses, on considerations such as their experience and presence on the market, how well established are its products/services and customers. For details on what business goes where, you may check the source article.


Our take


Since the analysis of what the companies should change, in order to meet the future prepared and embracing the disruption, instead of fighting it, often comes back to the digital generation and to modern software tools integrated into the business operations, such as chatbots or VR experiences – our take is simple.

The right software solutions are the ones that combine the big brand vision and perspective with the possibility to customize, according to the client’s requests and needs.

SAP tailored its solutions in view of the industry disruptions, not by ignoring the or by fighting them. When choosing the SAP tools you already have an important companion on your road to surviving in the future business environment, to start with.


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