Business and Technology Strategy

Strategies serve as prerequisites for the efficient realisation of corporate objectives including the creation of competitive advantages. The necessity to adapt a strategy is based on external or internal changes. Examples range from changes of consumer behaviour or the appearance of new technologies or competitors to new business models, which is currently omnipresent under the term of “digitalisation”. Companies are therefore forced to regularly check their strategies and adapt them to the objectives as well as general conditions.

While quattron predominately deals with the optimal application of company relevant technologies, business (segment) strategies primarily involves market and competition specific as well as organisational issues of the company.


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Business (Segment) Strategy

In the context of business (segment) strategy, infrastructure companies face the particular challenge of remaining flexible enough to react to altered customer and environmental requirements as quickly as possible, despite extensive investment sums in the range of billions and long-term investment cycles of 30 to 50 years.

Against this background, the following primary objectives are pursued in the establishment of a business (segment) strategy:

  • Orientation of the company to market requirements
  • Increase of competitiveness, among other by way of process efficiency and the implementation of innovative technologies and safeguarding of a sustainable competitive advantage
  • Resource-efficient achievement of the corporate objectives
  • Maintaining short-term flexibility despite a long-term agenda

quattron establishes a business (segment) strategy in a comprehensible process. Thus, the initial task is a detailed examination of the position of the business segment. Subsequently, possible options for action are identified and assessed.

During the subsequent, actual strategy formulation and quantification, selected action options are honed further and partial strategies are derived. In addition, further strategic thrusts are derived for the business segment strategy from corporate objectives. The strategic visions and objectives are formulated upon this foundation and a suitable target organisation is developed, if required. The entire strategy formulation is accompanied by a quantitative verification with the aid of business cases. The business segment strategy is concluded with the implementation plan (on an organisational, personnel and contractual level).

A consolidation of the business (segment) strategy with respect to procurement, financing and migration planning and the support of the strategy implementation with organisational concepts and tender/supplier management as well as the monitoring of the strategy implementation with project and change management are possible, if required.

Technology Strategy

Today, technologies are of elementary significance for the competitive position of a company. A special key aspect for quattron is the development of industries for companies with infrastructural background.

In the context of a technology strategy, quattron primarily pursues three objectives with the development and application of optimal and synchronised technologies:

  1. Reduction / optimisation of lifecycle costs of applied technologies
  2. Efficiency increase of primary and secondary processes (as well as capacity increase of the value-added chain, where applicable)
  3. Quality increase of primary and secondary processes

Following the derivation of the strategic thrust relevant for the technology, such as value creation depth, operator models, etc., first the business processes are oriented on the requirements of operators and consumers. Subsequently, the general conditions of the current technology and the market trends for the respective technologies have to be determined in order to, based upon the status quo, be able to flexibly, long-term and cost efficiently fulfil all requirements on the technology based on the status quo. Ultimately, the strategic objectives are formulated with respect to architecture and responsible organisation and the budget and personnel requirements, including general conditions such as billing models, are determined. The main purpose of the organisational issues is the optimisation of the lifecycle costs of the applied technologies with the assistance of standardised organisation and process models and the regulation of clear responsibilities. quattron generally concludes a technology strategy with an implementation plan, including the migration strategy.

Ultimately, the implementation of strategies in the company has to occur with the action of employees in their respective areas of competence. It has become evident that this effect can only be achieved inadequately by way of a change management.

With respect to the strategy development, we have concentrated on the following technology sectors:

  • Information technology (IT)
  • Telecommunication (TC)
  • Control and safety technology (CST)

IT Strategy

The IT strategy of a company defines the fundamental role of IT within the business strategy of the company. It defines key principles, the design and the architecture of IT as well as the provision of IT services. There is hardly a sector, which can manage without information technology along the value-added chain. Only IT, which is aligned to the strategic objectives of the company in the best possible manner, can effectively support its successful implementation. The objective is to determine the best possible IT strategy in a tension field of requirements competing with each other. The interaction of organisation, processes, application landscape as well as infrastructure and technology implementation have to be optimally aligned to the business-critical success factors. In the course of this strategic realignment, also the adaptation of IT processes and IT organisation as well as IT governance are required to achieve the previously determined objectives.

TC Strategy

The TC strategy is often the link between the various technologies in an infrastructure company, as the transmission connections of telecommunication can/should be used also by information technology as well as the control and security technology. In this context, it is important to combine the various requirements in one consolidated TC strategy and to realise an efficient TC infrastructure to support the corporate objectives. Telecommunication is a promising lever as a significant performance and cost factor. As a consequence of this strategic realignment, it is often necessary to adapt the TC processes and TC organisations in order to achieve the previously determined objectives. quattron particularly specialised in monitoring the introduction of private TC networks, such as GSM-R for railways and BOS for public authorities with security tasks (police, fire departments, rescue services, technical relief organisation, etc.).

CST Strategy

The strategy for the control and security technology of a (railway) infrastructure company is extremely affected by statutory, political, operational as well as technological framework conditions and requirements. Considerable political and statutory framework conditions encompass the European interoperability, discrimination-free grid access and the available financial resources. While the technologies and their innovation potentials as well as the traffic prognoses available on the market represent further external framework conditions, particularly the internal operational requirements have to be considered in the context of a CST strategy.

Infrastructure companies face the task of permanently ensuring the efficiency, availability and economy of the network infrastructure by way of a long-term aligned CST strategy.

When formulating a CST strategy, not only the replacement of outdated technology and systems, but also the migration of subsystems, e.g. due to technical dependencies has to be considered.

Naturally, technological innovations are initially of great importance in the context of the strategy development. The general trend to standardisation, modularisation and digitalisation, e.g. in the information and communication sector as well as the increasing usability of industrial components, does not stop at the security-relevant sector of the control and security technology. It allows the realisation of significant cost advantages over the lifecycle phases of the control and safety technology; however, this also entails changes in the distribution of competence among the value-added chain.

quattron has particularly specialised in monitoring the introduction of the European Rail Traffic Management system (ERTMS).

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    Efficient realisation of corporate objectives and creation of competitive advantages!