The maritime industry is in the middle of a digital transformation and Vopak Agencies has the ambition to play a key role in the future shipping industry. For this reason, Vopak Agencies has set up Digital Port Solutions in early 2019. A team was put together to further define the digital strategy “from Agent to eGent” and to get to actual development of this underlying strategy. various innovative initiatives were started. A couple months on the road, Innovation Booster was taken on board to accelerate customer validation of one of the initiatives. The project targets were (1) validate, or invalidate, the customer value of the innovation initiative, (2) identify a ‘problem-solution fit’, and (3) observe the way of working and come up with improvements.
The proposition teams worked on different innovative initiatives that were derived from the digital strategy: “from Agent to eGent”. Doing that, the proposition teams mainly focused on validating the technical feasibility, without validating the desirability and viability of the potential proposition. So, together with the innovation team, we mapped assumptions on the ‘activities, pains, and gains’ that the customer segment “Ship Owners” were experiencing. During the three weeks that followed, we tested the assumptions through interviews with the customer segment.
With the learnings from the interviews, we were able to adapt the solution so that it would better fit the customer segments’ needs. In week four and five, we reached problem-solution fit for the innovation initiative. The customer-centric approach had proven to be successful, and was subsequently adopted by the other proposition teams. The iteration of the innovation process was then captured in a new version of the innovation funnel.