[XGNews]: Shanghai Unicom: creating new momentum for digital development

The following is the [XGNews]: Shanghai Unicom: creating new momentum for digital development recommended by xgapn.com.

In the past few years, Shen Hongbo, Secretary of the Party committee and general manager of Shanghai Unicom, and his team have conducted in-depth research on a number of Companies in order to seek ways of business transformation.

“Digital transformation is the only way to upgrade the telecommunications industry. It is necessary to seize the digital economy outlet and use digital kinetic energy to enable Unicom to develop with high quality.” In the one hour long telephone interview, the communication “veteran” who has been working for more than 30 years has high morale and is far more sensitive to the market than the young people.

Shanghai Unicom has become a leader in the digital transformation of China Unicom through scientific research and judgment, seizing opportunities, and implementing precise policies. Recalling this “journey”, Shen Hongbo’s every decision shows his judgment that the communication industry keeps pace with the times, which is the key factor for Shanghai Unicom to achieve leapfrog development.

Reporter: how do you evaluate the introduction of the three year action plan for the reform of state owned enterprises?

Shen Hongbo: I think the “three year action plan for state owned enterprise reform” is very systematic. For state-owned enterprises, including China Unicom, it is necessary to adhere to the two “consistent”. From the “focus, innovation and cooperation” strategy proposed by the group company at the beginning of the 13th five year plan, to the first year of mixed reform in 2018, and to strive to create a new situation in the construction of “five new” Unicom, and then to the digital transformation proposed last year, these reforms are in a continuous line and progressive.

For Shanghai Unicom, this round of state-owned enterprise reform is in a period of strategic opportunities. Therefore, from 2017, we are determined to seize the opportunity of digitalization, carry out all-round reform of enterprises, and continuously enhance the internal driving force of the organization by accelerating development, doing large-scale, improving performance, improving service, optimizing management and improving governance, so as to deepen reform, effectively guarantee enterprises to shape new advantages of development, and strive to realize “overtaking on the curve”.

Reporter: as a witness and participant of the reform, how does Shanghai Unicom seize the digital opportunity to achieve high-quality development?

Shen Hongbo: since the integration, the overall development of Shanghai Unicom has been relatively stable, but comparatively speaking, our revenue share is still low, the enterprise scale is relatively small, and the development system has not fully matched the new round of competition pattern. From 2016 to 2017, digitization has just emerged. We judged that digitization will be the biggest opportunity in the next 10 years, so we seized a wave of growth opportunities brought by 2i2c to carry out internal primitive accumulation. It is also coincident with the group’s later ideas to promote the reform from four aspects: in-depth business transformation, cultivating new kinetic energy, deepening dynamic reform, and accelerating the transformation of Internet operation.

In this process, we create new momentum of digitalization by increasing staff, and cultivate and give priority to the construction of teams and systems in the business field of government and enterprises. In operation, it has developed from the channel of social cooperation and agency to gradually strengthen the construction of its own team. We have also carried out the reform of Internet-based operation at the same time, but in fact, from 2019 to 2020, we will find the feeling with the digital orientation of the group company, and finally form the “construction drawing” with the operation system reform as the guide, the process reengineering as the basis, and the scene remodeling as the starting point.

Reporter: from what you know, how effective is the reform of Shanghai Unicom?

Shen Hongbo: we believe that innovation is the vitality of an enterprise, so we always regard innovation as an important engine to accelerate the development of an enterprise and establish a competitive advantage, and regard the business innovation of digital services as the strategic growth point of an enterprise in the future.

The main measures are to increase the investment of resources in the field of innovation, vigorously develop innovative technologies such as “cloud, big, material, intelligent and safe”, strive to cultivate digital service ability, and successively participate in the construction of municipal projects such as the application of smart site environmental monitoring in Shanghai and the application of grid video intelligent city management in Shanghai; New applications such as Qingpu and Fengxian District “Xueliang project”, Jing’an 151 District IOT urban area, smart parking, 5g smart Park / community have been built; In the future, it has built industrial Internet benchmarking projects represented by COMAC and Jiangnan Shipyard, firmly grasped a new round of development opportunities, and walked in the forefront of digital services.

In the past five years, the main business income of Shanghai Unicom has increased from 9.103 billion yuan in 2016 to 11.641 billion yuan at the end of the 13th five year plan, which is always higher than the average level of the local industry; The profit increased from 1.493 billion yuan in 2016 to 2.240 billion yuan, and the revenue profit margin reached 19.24%; The revenue market share increased from 15.84% at the end of the 12th Five Year Plan period to 19.54% at the end of the 13th Five Year Plan period, with an increase of 3.7 percentage points. The business system of the enterprise has made great progress, its ability to resist risks has become stronger and stronger, and its development potential has become more and more sufficient.

Reporter: compared with other companies, what are the differentiation advantages of Shanghai Unicom?

Shen Hongbo: first, we are taking digitization as the main growth momentum, enabling the whole production scene with comprehensive digitization transformation, building a smart operation brain, and promoting the digitization of organizational structure, personnel structure, network base, service products and operation system. Second, our operation system is relatively complete. We have built a government enterprise BG system based on industry segmentation, accelerated the operation system reform in key areas such as the public, government enterprise, network, service, middle platform, it, scientific and technological innovation, promoted the overall reconstruction and remodeling of operation mode and workflow, and improved the efficiency of corporate governance. At the same time, thanks to the early exploration of the market-oriented personnel selection and appointment mechanism, strengthening the ability of cadres to go up and down, personnel to enter and out, and promoting the salary to be more or less, the work motivation of cadres and employees and the enthusiasm of doing business have been continuously enhanced. Now our company has more than 1000 contract employees of government and enterprise line, all of them are “post-90s” with high education background, and the team has strong professionalism, sales ability and enterprising spirit.

Reporter: looking back on the past few years, what successful experiences do you think you can share with us?

Shen Hongbo: relatively speaking, we have done quite correctly in the past few years. First, we have made a relatively early layout in the field of digitization, and we have a relatively accurate judgment of future trends. Since 2017, we have expanded our customer base through digitization, and improved the momentum of revenue growth. Second, we have a clear understanding of the business rules of Shanghai. The urban business structure of Shanghai is characterized by prominent features. We have given priority to increasing the investment of resources in the field of government and enterprise, initially built the network capacity base of the new generation of information infrastructure, combined the emerging momentum of government and enterprise with digitization, and formed a leading edge in the trend field of the largest business sector.

Reporter: what development difficulties have you experienced in the process of reform and how have they been solved?

Shen Hongbo: the most difficult part of the reform is the change of ideas and staff work style. If the understanding is not in place and the ideas are not unified, the reform will be difficult to promote.

For example, for a long time, some cadres and employees still have the idea of “living a small life” in the comfort zone to varying degrees, so the pressure of increasing staff has been relatively large. I have always believed that if employees are regarded as “hands”, it means that “people gather firewood and the flame is high”; if employees are regarded as “mouths”, it means that “people don’t eat enough”. From the perspective of development, if we want to further adapt to the new pattern of full-service competition, strengthen digital opportunities, and gradually form the ability of independent operation and development, we must increase the number of employees. Therefore, we seize the labor cost bonus brought by 2i2c to further strengthen the construction of talent team.

Another example is the change of business model. In the south, government and enterprise businesses mainly rely on agents, while mobile businesses mainly rely on social channels and stores. Today, relying solely on channels and agents will face the “ceiling” of development, and there will be greater instability in the competition. Therefore, I have always stressed that the business transformation should speed up the construction of independent system and conduct in-depth business based on customers on the basis of consolidating the existing channels and online channels.

This kind of business model transformation is more difficult, which includes not only the expansion of the team size, but also the establishment of business strategy, but also the cultivation of some abilities and the transformation of work style in the core strategy, all of which need to be thoroughly “reborn”. We are glad to see that, after a long time of efforts, up to now, we have formed a direct sales team of thousands of key customers, formed a diversified contact and pattern based on channels and agents in the public field and the business enterprise field, and the independent system is playing a greater role. Our cadres have been working hard for a long time. They have made great efforts to work hard. They have made great changes in their work style and hard-working spirit. They have also made new breakthroughs in some important fields. We believe that the system will be more robust in the future.

Reporter: what problems do you think still exist in the reform and development of the company? What are the next challenges?

Shen Hongbo: it is mainly reflected in our ideology and work style, especially in the fact that our cadres and staff do not have a deep understanding of the reform under the wave of digital transformation, their ability needs to be improved, and the reform needs to evolve in a deeper direction.

At present, our plans in resource allocation optimization, digital operation and small-scale reform have come to an end. We also believe that relying on the existing strategic layout, operation mode and operation ability, we can support the new round of development of the enterprise in the “14th five year plan”. In the future, we will continue to deeply understand the guiding direction of docking with the group company, and make a good start, continuous deepening and continuous iteration.

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