Game Changer Profile
Martin Summerhayes, Head of Delivery Strategy and Service Improvement at Fujitsu Read insights
In the UK’s world of IT, Martin Summerhayes is known as “The Billion Dollar Man,” having once innovated a billion dollar business for HP while also working as a field engineer.
His expertise in customer experience and service needs derive from innumerable physical visits from his field engineer days, which have enabled him to create enhanced service models with a customer-friendly but up-front extended warranty. This innovation became a huge new revenue stream for Fujitsu, and a model emulated by many companies since its inception. His service ideas stem from customer-centric realizations like this: Why should a customer have to deal with the complexity of choosing between hardware, software or warranty departments in seeking solutions from their provider? Surely the provider should be able to take their problem – or, better still, already know or anticipate the problem – and refer them to the right channels to solve it.
Summerhayes is now Head of Delivery Strategy and Service Improvement for Fujitsu – one of the world’s top five IT service providers, with products and services available in more than 100 countries. The company’s “human-centric” tech innovation is far-reaching, ranging from farming sensors for better harvests to software for the hearing impaired, and augmented reality systems to reduce truck rolls for field engineers. Its slew of recent awards includes the Citrix Award for Partners, in which Fujitsu managed to get a key agency of the New Zealand government back online within days of the country’s 7.8 magnitude earthquake, with a cloud-based desktop-as-a-service solution.
Rather than seeing their tech portfolios managed in a series of add-ons and piecemeal updates in response to changing needs and improved software, enterprise customers routinely hail the fact that Fujitsu IT services are continuously up-to-date thereby enhancing personalization for the client’s needs.
One of Fujitsu’s most famous clients in the UK is McDonald’s. At a recent Fujitsu Forum event, Doug Baker, head of IT for McDonald's UK, said the partnership had gone beyond the traditional “break-fix” contracts of the past, and toward a flexible service which enabled a personalized, optimized customer experience for its 1260 restaurants.
The partnership, including the new CARE program, is enabling kiosk-driven table service – and the remarkable recognition that “the biggest focus for technology innovation in restaurants is leveraging a customer’s own device,” – as well as a very human kind of load-balancing, where drive-thrus take simultaneous orders in two lanes and deliver efficiently in one.
Having learned some high traffic retail customers do not like the disruption of even rapid response site visits by predictive IT engineers, Fujitsu responded with “invisible service provision.” Martin Smithen, head of Fujitsu’s TMS Offering Development, notes to ensure the success of the remote, invisible support, the service requires customers are kept fully informed. Despite the benefits of optimized engineering support, the role of human intelligence remained on a par with technology in formulating business strategy, Doug Baker, head of IT for McDonald's UK, says, “The most powerful data we have had comes from CARE engineers who go to sites, talk to the stores, and brief us on how the systems are being used.”
No one knows the value of both human intelligence and technology better than Summerhayes, who remarks, “The consumer is driving changes like the opportunity for prediction, the cost of IT, and the spread of the Internet of Things. Thirty years ago, we could monitor container ship’s location. Twenty years ago, we could monitor the containers. Ten years ago, we could monitor the pallets in the containers. Now, we are talking about tracking products throughout their entire journey, through lower cost RFID tags on value-based consumer items. Lower levels of granularity present huge opportunities for customers.”