Technological revolutions are disrupting economic markets and businesses. As a source of opportunity, digital technologies are at the heart of strategic thinking and development initiatives, impacting all functions: from human resources to sales and customer relations. How are these changes taking place? What skills are companies looking for to meet these challenges? What do companies expect from the new generations entering the labour market? Insights from three major groups: Seb, Accor and Canal+.

Digital transformation has been on everyone's lips for many years. Digital technology has been a true revolution, creating new business models and forcing established companies to rethink their methods, their organisation and even their markets. While digital technology is now fully integrated into everyday tasks, the latest innovations in data and artificial intelligence open up promising prospects. How are companies implementing these changes? “As with any transformation, digitalisation has a human dimension," says Alix Boulnois, Chief Digital Officer of the Accor Group and member of the Executive Committee.

Opportunities for graduates

Data analyst, growth hacker, UX/UI designer, digital project manager, process automation consultant, digital change manager, product owner: the opportunities for the new generation are numerous.

Indeed, new technologies require new skills. Companies are focusing their recruitment efforts on talent that is equipped, trained and ready to drive structural change. They are constantly on the lookout for, and particularly rely on, young graduates who enter the job market with freshly acquired knowledge of the latest digital innovations and the ability to continuously learn in these areas. “We need technical skills, experts, but also people who can train themselves, learn to learn and have a solid international culture,” explains Patricia Noguès, Talent Acquisition Project Manager at Canal+ Group.

Beyond technical skills, it's about a completely different culture and way of working, focused on change, test & learn, and a pioneering spirit to follow trends and constantly evolving needs,” adds Alix Boulnois.

Training and experimentation to foster a digital culture within organizations

The same observation applies to Group Seb, a historic French industrial company that is becoming a full-fledged e-commerce player. “Some of our employees have spent their entire careers within the group and have had no initial digital training. We are training them through specific internal programmes such as the E-commerce Advance Programme,” explains Alexandre Marrot, E-commerce & D2C Director at Group Seb. The company's digital culture is also developed through recruitment. “Our searches focus on profiles trained in digital, e-commerce and data challenges. We particularly value profiles trained from emlyon business school, who have mastered these subjects and also have strong soft skills that contribute to spreading the digital culture within our organisation,” confirms Alexandre Marrot.
The Seb Group, which is closely involved in digital transformation, regularly organizes round tables on these topics. Among the guests: Cédric Villani, a mathematician, came to discuss artificial intelligence and its impact on working methods.

Technological revolutions are disrupting economic markets and businesses.

The Seb Group, which is closely involved in digital transformation, regularly organizes round tables on these topics. Among the guests: Cédric Villani, a mathematician, came to discuss artificial intelligence and its impact on working methods.

The company also fosters a strong culture of experimentation, particularly around AI: "We're at the beginning of the story. We are identifying use cases and prioritizing them based on the value they bring to the business. Once this selection is made, we work on POCs that allow us to experiment before considering a rollout," explains Alexandre Marrot.

At Accor, the digital culture is driven by the Digital & Business Factory, which supports and provides the right tools to continue the Group's transformation. This unit helps to acculturate teams to new technologies and new ways of working. It promotes a more cross-functional organization, breaking down silos and supporting talent through change.

Identifying and seizing business opportunities

Digital transformation also has a direct impact on an organization's business model. It opens up new markets, creates opportunities, improves productivity and enhances customer service. The Accor Group, which operates in the highly digitized tourism and hospitality sector, confirms: “ AI stands out as a flagship innovation with unlimited potential to redefine customer experiences. By leveraging AI capabilities, we have the opportunity to orchestrate personalized interactions and seamlessly deliver customized touches that anticipate and respond to each guest's unique needs and desires. From intuitive recommendation systems to predictive analytics that guide service improvements, AI enables us to create memorable moments that leave an indelible mark and foster lasting connections and loyalty.

Canal +, which has completely changed its model and organization under the pressure of the digital age - from broadcasting to streaming - continues to explore new models, especially in the field of artificial intelligence. "This technology raises many questions, especially in intellectual property. AI is playing an increasingly important role. Our challenge is to ensure that our people know how to use it, understand its potential and its limitations, and create complementarities.", explains Patricia Noguès.

For the Seb Group, e-commerce is set to play a major role in its activities. The electronics specialist aims to achieve 50% of its sales online or direct to consumers in the coming years. This distribution channel is intended to replace the entire value chain. "Take our packaging, for example. When you buy online, you get a cardboard box. The role of the visuals and the product itself is different. We have to rethink every step to meet consumer expectations and habits.", explains Alexandre Marrot.

These examples confirm that transformation is not just a stage, but an ongoing process that requires us to change our working methods, job profiles and skills. In a state of perpetual renewal, the company must anticipate changes and demonstrate agility, relying on its talented workforce. Digital technology thereby (re)positions humans at the center of this dynamic.

emlyon business school's programs train digital transformation leaders for companies

emlyon business school offers a range of programs designed to prepare students for leadership roles in digital transformation within organizations. The school's curricula focus on digital technology, equipping students with the skills and knowledge needed to navigate and drive technological advancements.

Do you have job offers (internship, work-study, full-time) for digital roles or do you wish to recruit an emlyon student ?

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