Daimler AG continues to drive forward with the digitalisation of the company – from the working environment of its employees to the direct relationship with its customers. That was what brought together 500 employees of the automotive manufacturer for a DigitalLife Day on Wednesday in Fellbach by Stuttgart.

Daimler continued the dialogue on the digital transformation that has been going on for years under the motto “Information, Inspiration, Innovation”. With the event series, the company is taking its employees along on the path of digitalisation. The focus was on innovative projects from all corporate units and on the digital strategy of the Group.

Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars, emphasised: “Digitalisation will continue to pick up speed. All big trends in the industry are driven by digitalisation and advance it themselves as well. Step by step, we will establish a new culture of innovation at Daimler. Only by doing this, we can align the strengths of the global group even more closely to the strengths of a start-up.”

DigitalLife Day 2015: The working environment in the digital era
With the DigitalLife Day the automotive manufacturer gave its employees the opportunity to exchange information about the digital changes in the Group through presentations, at market stands and in discussion fora. In addition, experts from the company and the digital sector reported on current trends such as autonomous driving and digital services.

With respectively three-minute presentations, ten Daimler employees gave so-called pitches. The goal of the short presentations was to persuade the other participants of an idea in order to find sponsors for the implementation. The projects that were presented included a Smartphone App for control of employees’ personal Work-Life Balance and the integration of interactive data glasses during vehicle repair that would enable consulting experts in real time. This clearly illustrated the importance of employees’ innovative ideas and entrepreneurial spirit for company success.

Dieter Zetsche: “We have to turn Daimler into more of a start-up garage again. My vision of the future Daimler AG is: A global group with a pioneering spirit”.

DigitalLife@Daimler: Active shaping of the digital transformation
Daimler has been consistently pursuing the topic of digitalisation for a long time and has made it into a core element of its strategy. The DigitalLife@Daimler initiative was called into life three years ago. The goal of the initiative is to develop and implement the main measures for addressing digital transformation. “Digitalisation has been a focal strategic topic across all corporate units for years. We are designing the digital future and are responding to changing customer expectations, faster innovation cycles and new industry partners. We are thus consistently developing the company further and are securing its sustainability,” said Wilko Stark, Head of Daimler Strategy & Mercedes-Benz Cars Product Strategy and Planning. In this context, there are five topic areas: Digitalisation of the direct customer interaction, for example with mercedes.me, digitalisation along the value chain (Industry 4.0), development of new digital business systems, effective utilisation of big data, and enabling employees for the digital world.

The DigitalLife@Daimler Initiative is supporting numerous digital projects for the direct implementation in the business units and is promoting active dialogue between employees, top management and the Board of Management. The management team of the initiative is deliberately comprised of different divisions and connects different hierarchical levels. A decisive factor on the way to the digitalisation of the company is the dialogue among employees, which is enabled – among others – by the DigitalLife-Community and the DigitalLife Blog in the Intranet as well as by events and workshops such as DigitalLife Day, open discussion fora (Open-Spaces) and hackathons, at which employees develop new apps within a very short time.

For the employees, DigitalLife@Daimler means mainly more networking. The goal is to promote shorter communication paths and close contacts for creativity with a view to developing innovative ideas. This requires a permanent, cross-divisional and non-hierarchical dialogue via digital channels as well. The platform Daimler Connect is an example of this: The internal social network supports direct collaboration and communications among Daimler employees worldwide.

Source: Daimler AG