For many years, business sales teams have been dominated by individuals understood to have the “gift of the gab”. The remaining nearly six in ten salespeople expect they will fail to hit their quota, and businesses often cannot identify the root cause.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is enabling those organisations to unlock the true potential of their staff, by identifying what works among the top performers, highlighting the key moments revenue is won and lost, and teaching the middle band of the team how to apply the lessons.
There is little doubt that healthy and engaged employees are a significant driver of business success. As part of this, bosses must create a culture of openness and honesty that ensures health and wellbeing initiatives genuinely help employees. Yet traditionally many employers have fallen into the trap of making generalised assumptions about what their people need or want.
“In many situations, assumptions have driven organisations’ wellbeing strategies. As well-meaning as this might be, it often leads to a disconnect between what employees need and what businesses offer,” says Dr Mark Winwood, director of psychological services at AXA PPP healthcare. “Engagement is crucial if the health and wellbeing process is to work for each individual and deliver positive returns.’’
Stock, currency and commodity traders have long kept their insights and ideas to themselves, but information-sharing on dedicated platforms is enabling others to make money by copying or monitoring their actions. As retail traders share strategies, fund managers have a powerful new measure of market sentiment.
For many organisations, working with a long tail of smaller suppliers is time consuming and inefficient. Keeping on top of such a wide array of business relationships is near impossible. In addition, lack of data limits opportunities to negotiate better deals with preferred suppliers.
Data centre business Equinix has pulled together a digital vision for its procurement, beginning by shifting focus from transactional purchase management towards the lifecycle value of end-to-end source-to-pay (S2P). The fresh approach went live in May for its Europe, Middle East and Africa operations, ahead of a mirrored change this year in its America and Asia-Pacific locations.
Shifting attitudes about what is possible, coupled with the deployments of new technology, mean risk engineering is ever-changing. As buyers are increasingly aware of on-demand and flexible cover in personal insurance, demand is also emerging for risk engineering to be clearly aligned with their business purpose.
Large insurers in siloed and highly specialist fields are switching to have much more regular and deeper engagement with clients, and alignment to their strategies, backed by transparency and smart technology.
The market for renewable energy is undergoing significant change as government subsidies and support schemes are scaled back, in the context of budgetary pressure and a surge in new installations. As a result, new ways of trading green energy are taking over.
Investors in renewable energy markets have, in recent years, become much more exposed to open market forces; the lack of government support means investors no longer have guarantees and fixed prices they took for granted.
E-commerce companies must take an increasingly holistic and proactive approach to fraud prevention if they are to keep pace with the growing demands of consumers and of payment processors such as Visa and Mastercard.
Customer expectation levels are consistently high, as shoppers everywhere demand unimpeded financial transactions at all times. For merchants, this represents a significant challenge because they are faced simultaneously with the need to block a widening variety of attempted fraud attacks.
For many businesses, a mixed economic environment, unease over tariff introductions and Brexit uncertainty may be rightfully viewed as causes for concern. However, bigger ticket European merger and acquisition (M&A) volumes appear to be holding up remarkably well. In this, our 13th Consumer Products M&A Insights report, we highlight several fresh trends driving the largest activity, which remains strong in spite of a backdrop of total annual deal volumes falling by over 10% from their September 2015 high of 1,500 to now around 1,100 on a rolling four quarter basis.
Chief financial officers (CFOs) are acutely aware of the fast-changing geopolitical situation, but they may not have fully considered their own crucial role in mitigating resulting procurement risks.
There are multiple emerging challenges to business stability worldwide, from rapidly shifting policies being pursued by US President Donald Trump, including tariffs on Canada, China and the European Union, to the threatened response of those who fail to abide by US sanctions on Iran.
Shipping hubs will soon have much more efficient systems and a truly collaborative culture, with ports in the UK and Europe leading the way.
For port operators worldwide, business as usual will no longer do. Increased efficiencies are required as a matter of urgency across maritime supply chains and technology is inevitably at the forefront of emerging transformations.
A selection of articles, reports and other content.