Lexmark’s Andy Kopp on democratizing data

As a global imaging and printing products company, Lexmark generates a great deal of data. To manage and derive insights from that data, Lexmark has created the Product Digital Thread, which has transformed business decision-making in the enterprise.

It also transformed the role of Director of Transformation Products Andy Kopp from delivering digital transformation projects to Lexmark to providing service enablement of IoT products and services to a broader market.

Thor Olavsrud of CIO.com sat with Kopp in the CIO 100 Symposium and Awards to learn more about this award-winning project and its impact on the business.

Below are edited excerpts from that conversation. The full video of the conference session is below.

Thor Olavsrud: What is digital product thread?

Andy Kopp: The product digital thread is really the correlated business consumable data, spanning the life cycle of our products. Key hardware, supplies, and components like our printer Fuser laser scanning unit. This really manifests as three distinct layers within our Azure Data Lake, what we call our raw, refined, and consumer layers. And these tiers of data are really purpose-driven, to really help users across a wide spectrum of their analytics needs, be it a data scientist, be it something more like a key user, or even just a user. final commercial. Something that can offer data to be consumed by all that spectrum of business consumers.

WWhat was required to bring this project to fruition in terms of process changes, abilities, And Culture?

There really was no technology or data management capability left untouched during this exercise…. [There was] an almost complete overhaul of technical skills … [and] most of this transition was primarily on-the-job training.

And for IT, on top of that, we actually had to go from being more of a (I’ll call it more of a business requirements recipient) to actually becoming more of a change agent.

Can you tell us a bit about what the results have been?

Now we have this information framework that really allows us to have this more effective governance, which again, is key, with capabilities like actually being able to establish a single global data dictionary and business glossary. And along with that, the genealogy of data. We’ve really found that those things are critical to building trust in data consumers.

We have also seen, in regards to some of these use cases that we have enabled through Product Digital Thread, have gone into production, not only for our own use and internal operations, but also for the customer. So that’s a big step in the maturity of our solution, exposing this information in a customer’s commercial consumable form to over 700 of our top customers in our Managed Print Services offering.

We are using this data to make smarter decisions about how to renew our core assets and components in our customer-managed printing fleets. We are using it to provide this closed-loop feedback from devices in the field to these bottom-up processes in product design and manufacturing and the supply chain. We are also using it, for example, to better understand any potential loss of revenue that we might have on our supplies, on our print cartridges, that we might have lost to the black and gray marketers, which are prevalent in these images. industry.

So as our company sees this progress, becomes more comfortable with the full notion of this single version, single source of truth for this business data, we really hope to see a dramatic increase in the maturation of our analytics. … We really anticipate moving to predictive and ultimately prescriptive maturity levels with this, as we grow over time.

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