Big Data & AI, Digital Business Strategy, Interviews

Volvo Interview: Leveraging Communication- & Self-Service Intelligence

Andreas Strasser
Head Of Research- And Automotive Strategy, Volvo Car Group/ Sweden

Andreas Strasser
Head Of Research- And Automotive Strategy, Volvo Car Group/ Sweden

we.CONECT Market Research & Intelligence sat down with Andreas Strasser from Volvo Cars to discuss the organization of efficient CI / MI processes and market intelligence in the digital era. Andreas Strasser is Head of Research- and Automotive Strategy at Volvo Car Corporation. Before joining Volvo in 2012 he worked as an Economic and Market Researcher for major premium automotive OEMs and think tanks, helping them to leverage new methodologies and technologies to gain fresh insights and distributing them more effectively. At Volvo Cars Andreas is responsible for Competitive Intelligence and the overall Market Intelligence strategy.

we.CONECT: Which role does competitive / market intelligence play in your company and how is it organized?

Andreas Strasser: Our global MI team is the central provider of data & insights across virtually all functions of the company. The work is split between a central team in Gothenburg and globally integrated MI managers in key regions/markets. This allows us to combine strategic global insights with local market knowledge.

we.CONECT: How can CI & MI effectively add value to a business? Do you have an example from your company?

Andreas Strasser: With long development cycles, CI & MI is crucial to steer the development process and stay responsive to our customer’s needs. In addition, local insights provide support for tactical moves.

we.CONECT: In your opinion, what does it take to organize an efficient CI / MI process?

Andreas Strasser: MI needs to spark interest in the customer and his/her needs to generate buy-in from management & the rest of the company. A process that allows for timely, reliable and actionable insight generation is the foundation for this and can be achieved through knowledgeable analysts & consultants with access to up-to-date knowledge management/reporting software.

we.CONECT: MI & CI in the Digital Era: How can competitive intelligence cope with completely changing landscapes?

Andreas Strasser: The beauty of the digital era is that it allows access to more data more easily. With the right tools & processes, completely new insights are possible.

we.CONECT: Which role does innovation play for you? How can disruptive technologies and innovation that are coming from competitors be addressed?

Andreas Strasser: Innovation is key in the automotive industry. However, regulations and long lifecycles mean that most technological innovations & disruptors are relatively slow & predictable when it comes to implementation. Thus, most trends can be spotted early with diligent tracking and extrapolation.

we.CONECT: CI & MI is extremely important for the automotive industry. What are industry-specific methods, tools, processes?

Andreas Strasser: OEMs rely heavily on product clinics and long-running tracking studies. While similar in nature to other research, the global scope and overall scale make them more challenging.

we.CONECT: How important is big data for CI & MI?

Andreas Strasser: Big data will become increasingly important as we gain the ability to link more and more data sources. In the long term, cars as data sources will also provide additional insights (within legal frameworks)