Moving to the cloud: the digital transformation of Eastman (team 2)
Eastman Chemical Company is a company that specializes globally in chemicals. It produces a broad range of advanced materials, additives and functional products, specialty chemicals, and fibers that are found in products that the consumer uses every day. The company was founded in the United States in 1920 and its headquarters is currently located in Kingsport, Tennessee. The firm has 14,000 employees and has manufacturing sites in Asia, Europe, Latin America and North America. In 2013, the sales revenue was 9.4 billion dollars. Eastman is divided into five business segments: additives and functional products, adhesives and plasticizers, advanced materials, fibers, and specialty fluids and intermediates (Eastman, n.d.).
Eastman does not heavily rely on Information Technology in their core business model. However, IT plays a large supporting role in their daily operations. Therefore, Eastman´s current information strategy is using its IT to support the business strategy. At the moment, IT plays a crucial role in determining how the company:
- Performs analytics, Planning and Promotion
- Interacts with potential and current suppliers and customers;
- Provides a platform for internal activities such as collaboration between employees;
- Manages, saves and secures all important documents.
From the interview with representatives from the company, it is clear that Eastman intends to transfer all of its business and IT activities to a cloud. Due to the increased need of mobility of employees, Eastman needs to support access to applications and data from different locations and from different devices. Our interviewees indicated that Eastman wants to move technologies such as SAP and SharePoint to the cloud. In addition, Eastman also wants to improve the CRM application company-wide. Currently, the CRM application is using the SAP platform but Eastman is considering other platforms such as Salesforce. The solution that we are going to present in this section is two-pronged:
- First, Eastman needs to implement the disruptive technology of cloud computing throughout the entire firm;
- Second, Eastman needs to combine cloud computing with mobile mobility management.
We will be discussing two technologies for our solution. We will start with the disruptive technology of cloud computing after which we will discuss the Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) approach and tool.
The role of information technology in the business model will remain unchanged: IT is still used to support the existing business strategy. However, we do believe that the solution we proposed will have a significant impact on how Eastman can deal with the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that were identified in the SWOT-analyses conducted and the movement around the five forces of their industry. Therefore, the fit between the proposed solution and the current business strategy is good: implementing the solution will help Eastman gain a stronger and better stance against the competitors in the industry and it will assist Eastman in executing their current business strategy of differentiation, since relationships with clients and customers will be maintained more easily and effectively, while innovations can be done more efficiently.
Our digital transformation project
Eastman, n.d. Company profile. Available at: http://www.eastman.com/Company/About_Eastman/Pages/Introduction.aspx