Title: Strategic business transformation through technology convergence: implications from General Electric's industrial internet initiative

Authors: Nivedita Agarwal; Alexander Brem

Addresses: Otto-Friedrich-University, Feldkirchenstrasse 21, 96052 Bamberg, Germany ' Mads Clausen Institute, University of Southern Denmark, Alsion 2, 6400 Sønderborg, Denmark

Abstract: Technology adoption is crucial for an organisation to remain competitive in the marketplace. Traditionally, two technologies - operational technology (OT) and information technology (IT) - have operated independently from one another; however, technological advancements that businesses are experiencing have increased the overlap and convergence of these two areas. Industrial organisations are investing heavily in the integration and alignment of these technologies and expect to benefit in several ways from this convergence, such as through increased productivity, reduction in cost, and real-time intelligence. This paper presents the case of General Electric (GE) and studies the various transitional phases and transformation dimensions that GE is experiencing, to manage this technology convergence. The evaluation of GE's experience indicates that convergence-related business transformation is nonlinear, and that some dimensions and stages of transformation previously thought to be relevant may not be pertinent for successful business transformations through technology convergence.

Keywords: business transformation; industrial internet; Industry 4.0; operational technology; information technology; technology convergence; machine2machine; General Electric; industrial internet initiative; technology adoption; case study.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTM.2015.068224

International Journal of Technology Management, 2015 Vol.67 No.2/3/4, pp.196 - 214

Received: 30 Sep 2013
Accepted: 12 Jul 2014

Published online: 29 Apr 2015 *

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