HITACHI VANTARA

DEVELOPING AN AI DIGITAL EVENT DISPLAY AND USER INTERFACE TO DEMONSTRATE HOW A HARDWARE SOLUTION OPERATES

Hitachi Vantara engaged customers with a unique digital experience as it demonstrated possible configurations of its data solution via a 3D visualisation.

Hitachi Vantara is part of the Hitachi Group, the 38th biggest business in the world. Every year, Hitachi Vantara runs a conference where it demonstrates to customers and partners what the next 12 months will hold.

Ordinarily, Hitachi Vantara would ship and physically erect hardware racks to demonstrate its new solutions and their possible configurations at the conference. However, it wanted a new way to showcase its entire portfolio that would surprise and delight delegates.

To achieve its aim, Hitachi Vantara needed a partner that could deliver a cutting-edge digital experience that would bring its project range to life in a new and exciting way.

SOLUTION

Development business 4 Roads specialises in creating intelligent self-service digital experiences and innovative bespoke solutions Hitachi Vantara selected 4 Roads as its partner for this project ahead of several other development agencies.

“4 Roads won the bid because of it’s innovative solution and because it engaged the Hitachi Vantara leadership with its customer-centric approach,” said Rob Nash, founder and CEO of 4 Roads.

“We were able to create a strong product that delivered on, and then exceeded, the client’s goals.”

The digital experience 4 Roads created was an exhibition stand that incorporated stunning 3D visuals and artificial intelligence to allow delegates to interact with how a hardware rack solution would look once it’s created and in situ.

By moving beyond a static demo model to a digital experience, customers and prospects of Hitachi Vantara could configure then visualise a racking solution customised to their exact requirements in much the same way as an automobile customer might configure the spec for their new car on a manufacturer’s website.

Displaying the experience on the conference floor as a six-foot ‘totem’ touch screen display, Hitachi Vantara could engage delegates by letting them create their ideal solution configuration from its product range.

The exhibit provided delegates with a complete understanding of how a solution would look and work. It also enabled delegates with an intuitive chatbot function that used artificial intelligence to answer basic questions about the product range, escalate complex queries to a sales representative, and book face-to-face appointments.

Once a unique configuration had been created, the experience allowed delegates to store and send their unique solution specifications on their smartphone.

4 Roads supported the Hitachi event teams on site during the event, not only to showcase how the solution worked to delegates and demonstrate capability, but to also drive traffic to the virtual rack on the stand.

TECHNICAL

The solution was built on .NET, which uses API driven design and makes use of React, Redux and SCSS. The benefit of using these components is excellent reusability. As each is modular, the solution could be iterated quickly using components used and well-tested in other projects.

The API-driven design also meant testing was extremely thorough and almost entirely automated.

"This truly ground-breaking project was only supposed to be an event solution but it has also been deployed online. Due to the ongoing benefits, the next enhancement will be for 4 Road to develop the solution into an app."

Robert Nash, Founder of 4 Roads Ltd

RESULTS

The digital experience 4 Roads delivered enabled Hitachi Vantara to demonstrate its solutions in a truly ground-breaking way. What’s more, the project was completed with great efficiency as just 12 weeks elapsed between an initial conversation and final delivery.

The experience proved to be a huge draw for customers and offered them a pleasurable and new way to engage with the range of products that was being showcased.

It enabled a depth of product information to be demonstrated – in a way that wasn’t previously possible – through the inclusion of necessary product detail within the experience. It also visually demonstrated the value of the products on show in a way that was unique and new.

Given 4 Roads’ response to the brief, these benefits were anticipated; but beyond these expected gains were several additional benefits.

Shipping hardware to international events is a time-consuming, costly, and logistically- challenging exercise; but when the solution is a digital experience, no such costs are involved.

The fact that no cost is required to demonstrate solutions enabled Hitachi Vantara to easily transfer the virtual rack to other events. Reusing the experience for other global conferences allows for more customers than ever before to interact and visualize Hitachi solutions.

4 Roads’ ability to deliver a product that exceeded expectations was further demonstrated by the unexpected use of the experience away from conferences and live events.

Hitachi Vantara has since used the experience – via a version scaled to the web and made available through a browser – to allow customers, partners and their own sales teams to quickly and easily source information about its products. It has also been used as a customer engagement tool allowing customers to visualize their investment.

Hitachi Vantara was hugely satisfied by the quality of the digital experience 4 Roads created which has meant that the business partnership will continue into the future.

Speak to James about your digital requirements

James is Client Services Director at 4 Roads and happy to talk through your current digital challenges