Do you know what business you’re really in?

KONE redefined its business and transformed the organization

By | 3 minute read | August 27, 2019


If Walt Disney had considered himself the creator of an animated mouse, we might never have had “the happiest place on Earth.” But because he deeply believed his role was to bring people joy, children throughout the planet are delighted to enter Disney’s fantastical world of imagination. Their parents – and their grandparents, too – are equally content to immerse themselves in magical stories of princesses and pirates, and to share moments of carefree pleasure. They’re not going to see a mouse. They’re entering a world of wonderment. That’s the difference between knowing what it is you stand for and what it is you do. Like Walt Disney, the people at KONE understand their purpose. They make elevators, escalators and automatic sidewalks. But their mission is to create a happier, more rewarding and enriching urban life.

Recently, Quick Bytes Live spoke with Patrick O’Connell of KONE’s marketing and communications division. He shared with us the corporate vision that is transforming their organization, “People are moving into cities every day. What you do with technology can actually make it better for them.”


KONE thinks outside the box

KONE is no longer selling people movers to building managers. They’re providing professional consulting services to help manage the flow of people both inside and outside the buildings. As Patrick told us, they’re looking at the bigger picture of urban living, “We’re really focusing on those who are riding that box on a rope.”

The organization has turned its focus to people flow, how people can get from one place to another, and then make best use of the facility once they arrive. By considering the journey and its purpose, the visionaries at KONE seek better, faster movement, more accommodating and relaxing buildings, and safer, smarter cities.

To meet the objectives of their new and profoundly disruptive strategy KONE decided to apply new technological tools and analytics. They chose Watson IoT.

Watson IoT provides cognitive capabilities for smarter performance

With the addition of AI (artificial intelligence), KONE can help predict and suggest resolutions to potential equipment problems. Sensors have been installed in elevators and escalators, to send a constant stream of reliable, timely information using IoT (Internet of Things). Additionally, once the data is collected, predictive analytics use it to determine when a potential failure might occur. When a problem is foreseen, workflow management systems can schedule maintenance, and prepare the crew. When technicians appear on site, they have the appropriate tools and knowledge to fix the issue on their first visit.

For the building owner, this means less downtime, fewer faults and detailed information for maintenance crews. For the people who use their elevators and escalators, it means less waiting time, fewer delays, and the potential for new, personalized experiences.

Think about your own business. What is it that you really do?

KONE reconsidered what it is they do. And they concluded that they are not simply manufacturers of elevators and escalators. They’re consultants who manage people flows. This change in mindset compelled them to connect more than a million units to Watson IoT. That wise investment in their future has helped KONE improve the performance of their products. And it’s now changing how people live and work and feel as they navigate their lives within a complex, crowded, and often stressful environment.

This astounding transformation in KONE’s corporate thinking is also affecting the way they work and how they interact with their customers. The boxes on ropes that are used in some of the world’s tallest and most notable structures are doing a lot more than elevating people. They are lifting the lives of the urbanites who use and depend on them daily.

For more information about Watson IoT and how it can help you redefine your business, visit the IBM web site.