K Bhaskhar, Senior Vice President, Business Imaging Solutions (BIS), Canon India
Life has turned upside down so also the business. OEMs are innovating to sustain their business and thrive. Enterprise IT World had a discussion with K Bhaskhar, Senior Vice President, Business Imaging Solutions (BIS), Canon India to understand Canon’s strategy.
How is Canon moving forward with its operations in India during the global era of social distancing?
During these testing times, when the ongoing pandemic has brought the world to a standstill, we at Canon, are closely monitoring the situation and strategizing our way forward. Safety of our employees, customers as well as our partners is of paramount importance to us while we are also focusing on providing seamless workflow solutions for businesses across industries.
We are constantly connected with our consumers and partners, building on the trust that they have in the brand. We have been extending service support to our customers in the essential services sectors including personal visits wherever required while complying with all the safety guidelines and regulations. Besides this, telephonic and video support is being provided by our service team so that customers can replace the toner in their machines and business is not hampered.
Additionally, to help our partners and customers adjust with the new normal, we have been consistently organizing informative webinars for them on relevant business topics such as Document Management Systems and their usefulness in different sectors. We have also been scheduling training sessions for our partners and their sales team to equip them with the necessary skills in line with the changing market trends.
With the unlock guidelines in place and businesses resuming, we are optimistic about the coming quarter.
How does the new ‘away from office’ work environment turn into an opportunity for Canon’s office automation solutions in India?
With the outbreak of COVID-19 continuing to cause uncertainty and remote working intensifying across industries, adoption of digital or online communication, cloud storage and collaboration services have emerged as an essential technology needs. With an increased focus towards resource optimization and automation, businesses are pushing for operational efficiency, cost reduction, improved turnaround time and serviceability.
The new normal of WFH or remote working culture has revealed the importance of digitization, streamlined workflows and the need for documents to be accessible whenever required. Thus, we foresee a positive demand for office automation solutions in the coming times, where data accessibility and security will be key aspects to be considered.
Technology infrastructure plays a pivotal role for organizations to adapt to the new work environment and Canon’s business solutions are well equipped to help them in achieving the desired objectives effectively. We have been constantly working towards changing the technology landscape by simplifying workflows within organization, through our confluence of both hardware and software solutions.
Moreover, staying true to our motto of ‘Business Can Be Simple’ and recognizing the dynamic shifts in the business environment, we are helping our customers with our state-of-art cloud infrastructure on a leading cloud provider platform, Therefore™ Online to secure and manage information. Recognizing the cloud adoption as an integral element for business transformation in these changing times, Therefore™ Online efficiently allows to capture, secure, manage, access, analyse and automate information on the web or on the go.
How will the new anti-touch way of business dealings hit the printer market in the long run?
Consumers have for sure become increasingly aware and conscious about their everyday business dealings and the way they interact with technology and devices. In such a situation, our range of multifunctional devices provide an edge, as they need a little to no touch to address an array of print, scan or copy related work. These self-operational and versatile MFDs can be accessible with just the scan of an access card, which addresses all user concerns related to safety and security.
As the market leader in the laser MFD segment, Canon has the No. 1 market share for H1 2020 in the overall laser MFD segment as well as in the colour and mono segment (Source: IDC Worldwide Quarterly Hardcopy Peripherals Tracker, 2020 Q2). We have consistently been bringing new technological advancements in the devices which focus on complete security, easy usability and cost management for organizations.
Our latest range of multi-function devices come with protection against malware, offer users the advantage of printing and scanning directly from the cloud and are AI-powered to help with predictive maintenance of the machine.
Your flagship product Therefore Online has been used by Uber. Please elaborate on its potential in the future.
Therefore™ Online is a cloud-based smart way of storing, managing and processing information management. Uber India, a multi-pronged organisation, saw a high volume of paperwork and a large amount of sensitive information being stored at the vendors’ repository. They realised the importance of getting a solution that could organise all their crucial data and information. Hence, we advised Uber India to implement Therefore™ Online to securely store, manage and process all types of business information. With user-friendly features, convenient accessibility, and a handy drag-and-drop functionality, Therefore™ Online made information organization and retrieval easier. Equipped with Optical Character Recognition (OCR), the solution helped the organization to locate reports quickly with just a simple keyword search.
Using Therefore™ Online with a fleet of imageRUNNER ADVANCE multifunction devices, they streamlined their information management processes using a single, secure platform. Documents could be accessed in real-time and on-the-go. Shorter time spent on retrieving files has increased productivity significantly for Uber India, allowing the company to focus on more productive tasks. The implementation of Canon’s hardware and software solutions have also helped Uber India minimize operational costs.
Apart from Uber, we have been seeing good response from companies, who are using Therefore™ across their different departments like human resources, manufacturing, customer services, logistics, finance etc. We are confident that we will see an increased uptake for the solution, especially in the wake of emergence of new digitised workspace culture.
How do you see your strategy changing once we return to normal life?
Once we return to our normal lives, we will see an upsurge in the office automation segment in India, as this lockdown has given insights on the importance of digitization and the need of accessible document from anytime and anywhere. Post the lockdown, the strategy would be to encourage our partners and customers to invest in document management solutions – that are secure, online and let user access data from anywhere.
Moreover, in India, SME’s have a huge growth potential. Hence, it will be our continued focus to improve our value chain offerings for them, emerging as the market differentiators. With an objective of getting closer to our customers and increasing awareness for our office automation portfolio, we will be focusing on bringing more conceptualized Business Imaging Solution Lounges, which allow customers to experience the produce before making informed and enriched purchase decisions. Presently, we have 15 BIS Lounges across the country.