There’s a paradox that often arises in business decision-making. On one hand, executives want to maximise the range of choices available to navigate an uncertain future. On the other, as more paths forward appear, more risk emerges, and their organisation becomes paralysed with indecision.
In manufacturing, this problem is particularly acute. As the sector enters a period of massive change, in which the future appears as a blank canvas for new technologies and capabilities, there are few limits on what can be achieved. Despite the potential efficiency benefits of modernising their technologies and processes, executives typically struggle to find the conviction on which of the many paths is going to take the business to its desired goals.
This can often create an undesirable state where the organisation begins multiple innovation projects yet continually finds reasons to delay full implementation, even switching focus to new initiatives before any real progress has been made. This is the so-called “pilot purgatory”. By assessing the hurdles and identifying the triggers necessary to step beyond the pilot stage, executives can begin to explore the benefits digital transformation can bring to their business.