On October 12th, 2018, we welcomed in our office in Paris, Thaddaeus Mueller and Marshall Chen from Fiducia, our new L&L Advisory Group Chinese Partner, for a first business meeting.
Interview with Benoît Andrade, Managing Partner of Arrowman Executive Search
Interview by Olivier Durand
Connected objects are being deployed in every sector. Not only in the world of manufacturing, but also in FMCG. Figures attest to this, according to Gartner’s survey, there were 20 billion connected objects in 2017, and there will be 75 billion in 2025. But let’s start from the beginning, what really is Internet of Things?
“It’s the universe of interconnected physical objects that generate artificial intelligence. They have the ability to autonomously take initiatives without human intervention. They communicate with each other and facilitate decision making by transmitting real-time information.”
Where do we find Internet of Things?
“In various kinds of applications. In automation systems, connected objects are in all communicating household appliances, smoke or presence detectors and sensors. For example, a connected detector is able to inform a supervision center that the battery is on the verge of running out. Sending messages and alerting, is subject to the world of IoT. This system makes products configurable, customizable, and places them at the heart of solutions with supervision, maintenance, improvement axes. We are entering a service era that is creating economic value.
In the world of industry, aeronautical manufacturers design and construct civil airplane motors covered with sensors, that continuously and in real-time during the flight, transmit information to both the technical services of the companies, and to the vendors. Because the algorithms have predefined standardized operating parameters for each phase of the flight, a relayed information that is outside of the predefined frame, can indicate a potential defect that can generate a preventative action of maintenance, a judicious intervention that is not systematic.”
Is the sector of economy concerned by IoT?
“Today, I’d say that the sector of Manufacturing is mainly benefiting from it, in particular, the Factory 4.0. It’s an ecosystem that involves hardware, software, telecommunications and data bases. Production chains that are entirely automated and connected, communicate between each other. It is this communication that constitutes the heart of the Factory 4.0. The whole chain of production operates without human intervention, from the introduction of raw material, to the packaging and storage of the product.”
What human challenges are companies faced with when they launch towards IoT?
“Because projects are complex, IoT involves all of the service lines in the company, the production, the maintenance, the logistics, the sales department…, everyone must communicate with everyone. The structuring projects impose open collaboration as well as information sharing and diffusion. They put into question the original organization of the company that is forced to evolve towards a transversal structure with less hierarchy.”
According to the International Data Corporation, the volume of data generated by connected objects, doubles every 2 years, and it will surpass 40.000 billion gigabytes in 2020, in the world. Millions of pieces of information are collected and stored, but for what purpose?
“Big Data disrupts the running of companies and their business processes with the huge quantities of data that it generates, the speed of their renewal in a universe that is more and more connected by the multiplicity of supported formats: digital, text, sound an image. There is a double stake, it lies in the quality of the storage of data and its safeguarding, as well as the study and analyses that we can draw from it.”
Internal use of Big Data
“It highlights the performance of each person and the consolidation of the information helps to identify, more precisely, the weaknesses in the chain of production.”
External use of Big Data
“It helps to anticipate the expectations of clients or fix the right price on a new product. But, I want to point out that Big Data creates little or no intelligence by itself, it only produces raw information. It’s up to the company to structure the information in accordance with its views… provided that they have the human skills needed to do so.”
So, on what specific functions can we count on to develop IoT projects and draw value from its collected data?
“In order to draw benefit from the collected data of IoT, the company must recruit three types of profiles, a Project Manager, a Data Scientist and a Data Manager.
The Project Manager, must pilot it entirely and bring a global vision to ensure a consistent platform and system. He must have the charisma and the ability to ensure that everyone is working in the same direction. His competences in telecom and data, place him in the position to be the guarantor for the respect of the objectives.
The Data Scientist uses the computing power of data and models the algorithms to meet concrete needs. It is a complex position that requires solid scientific baggage and the mastery of data analyses methods. He must also grasp the functions of the company in order to provide effective solutions. Moreover, the current trend in this position is to specialize in a specific field. It’s a position that is particularly sought after and the scarcity of skills in this field often hinders the development of projects.
As for the Data Manager, he ensures the operationality and the availability of the data, but not only. His role is to structure and to analyze the data, in order to bring out finer information and to facilitate decision making. The Data Manager must also dialogue with all of the services within the company.”
One last question, does Big Data affect your head hunting profession?
“Big Data plays an important role in recruitment by reducing the time spent sourcing (identifying profiles) and reinforcing its reliability. But it doesn’t go further than that; not for the moment at least. The time saved searching for candidates, will give the consultants more time to focus on essential matters, such as the meetings and interviews. Understanding the needs of our clients and grasping the personality and professional motivations of the candidates, are things that a computer does not yet know how to do. A challenge that a recruiter, such as myself, is faced with, is to be able to determine how a candidate will perform and behave, once hired. The use of the “serious game” will be, in my opinion, the solution for this, by putting the candidate in a situation, through a practical case, that will help determine his profile and his suitability for the position for which he applied.”
Vincent MONNET graduated from Centrale (Marseille) engineering school and is a specialist in direct approach recruitment in the fields of Computer Science and Information Systems.
He joined Arrowman Executive Search in September 2015 and became a Partner in September 2018.
Arrowman Executive Search’s team wishes him every success in this new stage!
The French industry will not be uberized. The 4th industrial revolution has already begun. We are not facing a disruptive revolution as expected, but a gradual transition to new industrial processes and collaborative modes.
The trend is discrete yet deep. The digitalization of manufacturing tools is under way, accompanied by experts that are particularly agile and dynamic. Those experts are key in the hiring and retention plans. The industry of the future is taking shape, but not as we predicted.
Industrial companies are constantly improving their processes. They are starting to reap the benefits from digital transformation: efficiency, work time, security… this raising awareness pushes traditional businesses to reinforce themselves by internally relying on new competencies.
New digital expertise interactivity
Competences (data analysis, IoT architects, security experts) are reshaping the factory 4.0 by providing their expertise, and also their vision and practices. The collaborative mode has therefore become a must for industrial businesses. A different working approach, but that has quickly proven its efficiency. The interconnexions between the production tool and the information system also require the implication of new generation Program Directors. They not only provide broad technical competencies, but also have the communication skills needed to lead the change.
The hindrances to transformation:
Even though the French industry no longer needs to prove its maturity, it must nonetheless still face the same obstacles: financial instability, difficulty justifying the return on investment, old equipment, and finally, lack of competences.
It is this last point that stands out the most for industrial businesses. Yet we observe that the first results, in terms of the optimization of predictive maintenance, are reassuring and encouraging.
Dynamization of players:
Companies, on one hand, have the vital need for profiles that are able to support their strategic vision while structuring their teams and analyzing the medium and long-term repercussions.
Candidates, on the other hand, find sense in their implication and ground for action to develop their abilities to the highest level of their potential.
Once “locked”, these profiles will need to be regularly challenged having been aware beforehand, that the industrial time is not always adapted to their function.
The challenge for recruiters today, is therefore to accompany this cultural change.
And for the candidates… to not be too impatient.
Renaud PRODEL joined as a Partner of ARROWMAN Executive Search, European direct approach recruitment and leadership consultancy firm, to grow its footprint in the UK. Based in London, he is in charge of Executives and Board Members recruitment in the UK, as well as development of the Educational Practice in France and in the UK.
He graduated from the University of Paris X Nanterre with a Masters in Economics, then from Oxford University (Saïd Business School) and HEC Paris with an Executive Masters in Consulting and Change Management Coaching. He began his career as an Auditor for Industry, Real Estate and Consumer products.
He continued his career with 19 years of experience in international executive search for experts and leaders before starting his own company. He is also an expert in human dynamic factors for transformation and change.
As we usually do at least twice a year, all L&L members met on March 21 & 22 in Milan.
One of the most important topics of this meeting was to exchange ideas and solutions regarding the current economic situation in Europe: indeed, most of our economies are booming, the working market is very active and it has become much harder to find and to attract talent. In this exciting but also challenging context, we think that our role is to support our Clients by being more attractive and more reactive. In this “war of talents” we concluded that “Pay attention to people” should be one of the key factors of success.
Another important topic of this meeting was our expansion: we are proud and happy to announce that L&L Advisory Group now has two new members in Sweden and in Italy. We would like to introduce and welcome Högström & Co and Arethusa. Both are well known and well established in their own countries, they have strong experience and expertise in the Executive Search industry, and they share the L&L Advisory Group DNA: a high level of professionalism, commitment and service, and strong human values. We invite our clients and partners to start using their services.
ARROWMAN Executive Search is a long-time partner of entrepreneurs and leaders of Mid-Caps and family owned companies. Our specialized and experienced consultants address specific issues such as : executive commitees structuration, succession planning, digital transformation, IPO, manufacturing organisation…
Below is an overview of the added value that ARROWMAN Executive Search provides regarding transformation and corporate development.
A family owned Mid-Cap (500 people) providing unique expertise and know-how to famous luxury brands.
Implementing a transformation program in order to boost innovation and to develop new markets.
ARROWMAN Executive Search’s solution:
Philippe Millot accompanied the company in the recruitment of a CEO in charge of this critical and ambitious transformation project.
For more examples: Mid-Caps and family owned companies
The development of the electric vehicle and the arrival of the autonomous vehicle mark a revolution that not only impacts car manufacturers but also automotive suppliers.
Electronics have incorporated the automotive industry since many years, however its presence and role have become preponderant to the point that today the heart of a car is no longer its motor but a connected central unit, capable of registering and processing hundreds of pieces of information on the vehicle, … as well as on its user.
The “intelligent” or “connected” vehicle requires automotive suppliers to provide not only simple technical products for one basic application, but to create products that insure a larger function, one that is intelligent (insuring data capture, data management and data processing) and that integrates itself in a global solution including services.
ARROWMAN Executive Search is a long-standing partner of entrepreneurs and executives in Mid-Caps and family owned companies. Our specialized and experienced consultants respond to specific issues such as structuring of management committees, succession plans, digital transformation, IPO, industrial organization… Below is an overview of ARROWMAN Executive Search’s added value on industrial transformation topics.
Business sector :
Company typology :
International family owned group (turnover: € 1 billion) operating in a technically challenging environment (continuous process), HSE (classified installation, Seveso 2) and social (strong union presence).
Strategic issues :
Conduct industrial transformation on a major site of the group, reorganize the technical services, strengthen the middle management, improve productivity and develop on the site of shared services and utilities platform.
ARROWMAN Executive Search’s response :
Alexis Brodsky advises the General Management to structure the process, identify and recruit the new Director of Operations in charge of the implementation of this ambitious project.
For more cases on industrial transformation topics : ETI – Family Business, Operations Branch