By Simon Walsh, NTT Ltd. CEO, Americas\nThe Tour de France is the world\u2019s great cycling race and a landmark on the global sporting calendar. As the official Technology Partner to race organizers Amaury Sport Organisation (A.S.O.) we\u2019re continually looking for ways to help them achieve their business goals of revolutionizing the fan experience and using technology to digitally enhance their event operations.\nWhile a bike race traversing 3,400km across France may appear to be a million miles from the challenges that other organizations face, we\u2019ve found this isn\u2019t necessarily the case.\nAs we continue to co-innovate with A.S.O. we\u2019ve identified key areas that have enabled them to accelerate their digital transformation.\nTrack everything of valueMuch has been written about how the Internet of Things (IoT) will revolutionize organizations, providing them with new and innovative ways to monitor individual aspects of the business in real-time. During the Tour de France, we track not just the individual riders but also vehicles and other critical assets for A.S.O. The technology and the business requirement underpinning this is the same whether you\u2019re tracking cyclists in France, an oil rig in the middle of the ocean. or cattle in Argentina.\nThe increase in the functionality of sensors enables organizations to monitor an increasing number of variables, from the health of a dairy herd to power production on an offshore wind turbine.\nThe remoteness of the application shouldn\u2019t impact the ability to monitor the status of whatever is mission-critical to an organization. Leveraging emerging network technologies such as private 5G allows you to track the status on critical assets in real-time.\nIncrease end-to-end visibilityIncreasingly it\u2019s no longer enough to monitor systems in isolation; every asset is linked to specific business processes, interconnected to deliver against specific business objectives. At the Tour de France, we created a digital twin of the entire race, mapping not just the route but all key points including the arrival and departure villages. With full visibility of all aspects of the event, A.S.O. can proactively manage the entire event from their smart event app.\nThe benefit of end-to-end visibility for any organization lies in the ability to map quickly and easily understand the business impact of any incident, assigning priorities based on this.\nLeverage data to provide real-time analyticsDuring the Tour de France, our data analytics platform generates 160 million data records per stage. Only some of this data is, however, critical to operations and needs to be visible in real-time. Prioritizing critical data and embracing edge-computing ensures that there are no delays in providing access to this information.\nReal-time data helps any organization make quicker, more informed decisions \u2013 just as A.S.O. need to get relevant information to fans and race organizers as fast as possible, so too do business owners want information about their customers and their processes. Insight into what data needs to be exposed to which stakeholders is critical to successfully monitoring any digital business.\nMachine learning is a big part of the innovative fan experience at the Tour de France. Building on the core analytics platform and algorithms, we\u2019ve added a combination of telemetry data, race results, rider data, course information, weather conditions, and seven years of race results to predict race outcomes. Extracting these insights has allowed A.S.O. to deliver an innovative customer experience and grow the reach of their fan base.\nWith the amount of data generated by all organizations continuing to explode, they need to tap into the power of modern AI and ML systems to expose insights that can be used to evolve organizational strategy, directing their innovation efforts and ensuring that they\u2019re able to continually evolve their customer experience.\nCombine services to advance your business objectivesThe value that any system provides is related not just to its purpose but also to the value created by its connection to other systems. At the Tour de France, the data we collect and analyse from the cyclists, fans, and devices is critical to A.S.O.\u2019s event operations. The same tools and services we leverage to enable an exceptional fan experience provide the foundation for the digital transformation of their event operations. A complex fabric of technologies architected to support an event that moves every day. The same principle applies to almost any other market with data forming the foundation of increased business value.\nEmbrace agility2020 was a challenging year for every organization, without exception. Last year the Tour de France was delayed and when the riders lined up at the Grand D\u00e9part in Nice, restrictions meant that many of the traditional support services had to be delivered remotely.\nBy adopting a cloud-first strategy, a decision that was made well before COVID-19 was even on the horizon, they were able to shift their support operations to a remote model, leveraging a global skills base and ensuring that there was no disruption to critical business systems.\nThis agility is key to any digital transformation journey, as disruption is now the norm rather than then exception, and all aspects of a digital transformation process should be weighed against their ability to withstand any potential storm.\nThroughout our partnership with A.S.O., we\u2019ve been able to explore new technologies that aren\u2019t only applicable to the Tour de France, but also deliver value to all of our clients as part of their digital transformation journey.\nWe\u2019ve seen how, in working with the City of Las Vegas, they\u2019ve been able to take superficially simple data collected from streetlights and speakers and turn that into actionable insights, enabling them to improve the lives of all their citizens. The same goes for all our clients as we look to explore innovative solutions to assist them on their digital transformation journeys.