The Silicon Review
Technology has contributed so much in transforming the way the world conducts commerce. Consumers are being introduced to a whole new world of social, financial and intellectual interactions that also facilitate business in developed and emerging markets.
Pitney Bowes Inc., a global technology company that powers transactions that drive commerce is in the midst of its own digital transformation. Pitney Bowes was founded in 1920 by Arthur Pitney who invented the postage meter. It has a nearly 100-year heritage of removing the complexities of mail for its clients. Today, the company helps its clients navigate complexity in the areas of shipping, ecommerce, data and mailing; from helping them use data to market to the best customers, to efficiently enable shipping packages, securing payments, and ecommerce returns and refunds.
The story of the Pitney Bowes transformation
“We needed to unlock the value of Pitney Bowes. We’ve been doing just that with our multi-year digital transformation,” says President and CEO Marc Lautenbach. The digital transformation is an extremely important part of Pitney Bowes’ strategy and it is driving three very important business outcomes. Firstly, improving client experience is necessary in this age of aggressive digital transformation. By digitizing its interface with clients, the company has been able to give clients a much better experience than it could have in the past. The second business benefit that digital transformation brings forth is new business opportunities from brand new products and business models. Finally, it drives operational efficiencies. The new modern digital and data technologies deliver economies of scale and cost savings.
Pitney Bowes has created a common design system for developing new products globally. The system has already created or redesigned more than 80 products, up from zero just five years ago. A Fusion big data platform is the foundation for the Pitney Bowes ecommerce business. It’s where 10 billion parcel shipping tracking events a year are processed. It’s also the foundation for its software and data marketplace, as well as its data factory for its data business and software solutions.
Now the company is in its tenth generation of machine learning. It heavily makes use of it across the company whether in supply chain analytics for its commerce services business or to help detect fraud for financial clients. Another example where its data initiative is greatly impacting the company is in the area of Internet of Things. At this point, Pitney Bowes has 200,000 connected IoT devices in its small and medium business solutions.
Lastly, in the area of cloud, the company has over 30 products and subsystems leveraging its common SaaS platform. It also has over 100 API families that were built in the last five years.
Core values that the company stands by and stands for
The strength of Pitney Bowes lies in its people and its culture of innovation. “You don’t stick around for 100 years if you’re not ready to change and innovate at a certain pace. I also think of resilience when I think about the qualities of the company, there is a certain resilience here that has withstood the test of time. People are proud of this company and it comes across in its culture,” says Marc Lautenbach.
With the motto to do the right thing the right way, Pitney Bowes is devoted to diversity and inclusion, and this continues to be a defining element of its character and the way it does business. Diversity and inclusion are critical to its business success as the company works to mirror the market it serves and compete for the best talent it can attract. “Our team is stronger – and our decisions better – when we have people with different backgrounds, different experiences and different points of view. This is why the data is very clear that diverse and inclusive teams are keys to high-performing organizations,” Marc Lautenbach added.
Pitney Bowes is a winner of the Catalyst Award for its diverse and inclusive practices toward women who now represent 42% of its global workforce; 27% of its senior management; 30% of its directs reports to the CEO; and 36% of its Board of Directors. Some of its recent awards include:
Significant innovations marking Pitney’s success
Pitney Bowes helps ecommerce retailers, marketplaces, and anyone who’s shipping parcels, from the very smallest to the very largest, to remove complexities from processes inherent in getting a package to a consumer. Its technology innovations are its major differentiating factors that bring speed and scalability to the entire operation. Pitney Bowes sees itself as an innovator in the ecommerce returns space and cross border shipping space. The company has made it easy for consumers to return merchandise and affordable for retailers. It has also introduced a breakthrough line of products as well as the SendPro C-Series for small and medium businesses that effectively integrates physical sending with digital technologies and APIs.
Today, Pitney Bowes is matchless in the industry. It is the largest workshare partner of the United States Postal Service processing with over 16 billion pieces of mail per year. It has about $7 billion worth of postage/mailing spend going through its SendPro family of products alone. It processes more than 120 million parcels in just one quarter and works with more than 200 retailers including brands like Harrods, Harvey Nichols and Nordstrom.
Pitney Bowes looks forward to continue innovating solutions for its clients in the areas of mailing and shipping, data and global ecommerce for the next 100 years. “At Pitney Bowes, we thrive on helping our clients navigate the complex world of commerce. We are craftsmen of commerce,” says Marc Lautenbach.
Marc Lautenbach, President and CEO, Pitney Bowes Inc.
Marc Lautenbach assumed his current post in December 2012, and is a member of the Board of Directors. Before joining Pitney Bowes, he spent 27 years at IBM. Marc’s tenure at IBM included senior positions, leading the consulting and systems integration business in North America, sales in the Americas, and leading the small and medium business globally. In addition, he held senior executive positions at IBM Asia Pacific.