CMP'S InformationWeek and Cap Gemini Ernst & Young Announce Results of First In Series 'Innovation 100' Research-Spotlighting Leaders in Customer-Centric Business and Technology Strategies in the New Economy

Harrah's Entertainment, The Vanguard Group and Compaq Computer Corporation Top the List

Dec 11, 2000

InformationWeek, the leading IT media brand, and Cap Gemini Ernst & Young, the global consulting firm, announced today findings from the Innovation 100 research series, revealing that companies are starting to adopt the customer service message and, increasingly, are starting to focus on customer needs.

The first ranking of the series, named Innovation 100: The Customer, spotlights industry leaders in defining and implementing innovative customer-centric business and technology strategies within the new connected economy. Topping the list are Harrah's Entertainment, Inc., The Vanguard Group and Compaq Computer Corporation.

Research teams from InformationWeek and Cap Gemini Ernst & Young came together to develop the Innovation 100 in an effort to help companies become proactive in serving their customers' needs. The resulting report is an in-depth look at 100 top U.S. companies' customer offerings and the systems they use to ensure their customers' personalized service.

"The findings of the Innovation 100 amplify InformationWeek's past findings that there is a definitive trend toward customer-centric offerings," said Rusty Weston, Editor of InformationWeek Research. "Our research over the past year has shown that companies are emphasizing customers' specific needs in compelling new ways." To find out how your company compares to your peers on this list, check out

A significant number of companies ranked on the Innovation 100 are starting to form emotional bonds with customers. In fact, 92 out of the 100 have made customer relationship building a significant component of their strategy. As an example, the survey found that Harrah's Entertainment tracks the preferences of individual casino customers and develops promotional offers based on a customer's specific needs, and that Emerson Electric not only sells refrigeration equipment, but also uses the Internet to moderate the temperature of each refrigerator it sells."

  Other findings from the study include:
  -- A trend toward bundled or "blurred" solutions, mixing services together
     with products.  For example, a car rental company that also offers
     customers the option of renting cell phones.
  -- Small and mid-sized companies have an advantage when it comes to client
     relationships, due to their flexibility and ability to respond to
     customer needs quickly without being hindered by bureaucracy.
  -- True success lies in innovative uses of technology, not simply in the
     technology itself.  Companies must determine the best uses of
     technology for their industry and their customers and implement it in a
     way that supports their business strategy-meaning that leadership and
     the ability to deliver is a strong factor within successful companies.

The research for the Innovation 100 was conducted over the Web in October 2000 using a modified form of StraightEights, an in-depth methodology and breakthrough benchmarking framework developed by Cap Gemini Ernst & Young.

"Innovation 100 benchmarks the most effective uses of information technology," said David Neel, director of Cap Gemini Ernst & Young's StraightEights Method and AccelerEight Center. "It provides an excellent point of reference for other companies to measure their own technology and customer service strategies."

Earlier this year InformationWeek featured the InformationWeek 500 study, showcasing business innovation in 24 vertical industries. The Innovation 100 research is a more specialized effort that illuminates specific business-critical areas of information technology. It is a powerful, in-depth benchmarking tool, designed to break new ground in the examination of innovative business initiatives.

About InformationWeek

InformationWeek helps the people who buy, build and manage information technology in business. It is published weekly and has a circulation of 440,000. has 150,000 unique visitors per month. Technology is changing the nature of what it means to be in business. It's collapsing supply chains and fueling the growth of new companies and new markets. Through breaking news, in-depth features, and research, InformationWeek is the source for business innovation powered by technology. We like to think of our magazine as an intelligent browser - one that helps readers navigate through important news and trends and guides them to additional resources online or at live events. Our content is organized around the way business and technology managers make decisions. Weekly sections include: Follow the Money, Tech Analyzer, Business applications, Infrastructure, and Customer Economy. In addition to the weekly magazine, InformationWeek provides a platform of information solutions including, InformationWeek Research, InformationWeek Events, which includes the InformationWeek Conference for business and technology executives and InformationWeek Daily, an e-mail news service. In May 2000, InformationWeek was named one of the nation's Top 10 B2B Media Powerhouses by Advertising Age's B2B

About CMP Media Inc.

CMP Media Inc. is the leading high-tech media company providing essential information and marketing services to the entire technology spectrum-the builders, sellers and users of technology worldwide. With its portfolio of newspapers, magazines, custom publishing, Internet products, research, consulting and conferences, CMP is uniquely positioned to offer marketers comprehensive integrated solutions tailored to meet their individual needs. Online editions of the company's print publications, along with products and services created exclusively for the Internet, can be found on CMPnet at

About Cap Gemini Ernst & Young

Cap Gemini Ernst & Young is one of the largest management and IT consulting firms in the world. The company offers business strategy, management and IT consulting services, systems integration, technology development, design, and outsourcing capabilities on a global scale. The Center for Enterprise Creation at Cap Gemini Ernst & Young was founded in 1999 in New York to quickly and effectively develop and launch new businesses. The Center for Enterprise Creation leverages Cap Gemini Ernst & Young's proven capabilities, strong industry focus, and global reach, along with the newly established Value Web(SM), a network of best of breed service providers, including legal, branding, recruiting, hosting, funding and other providers. The Center for Enterprise Creation has locations in New York and Chicago; a soon-to-be opened facility in Los Angeles, and has support capabilities in Europe. Several companies have already been successfully launched, and large corporations are bringing their innovative ideas to the Center for Enterprise Creation. Cap Gemini Ernst & Young employs more than 58,000 people worldwide and reports global revenues of about 7.7 billion euros (1999 pro forma). More information is available at

SOURCE: InformationWeek

Contact: Dominic Albanese of PepperCom for InformationWeek,
212-931-6128,, or Stephanie Stegich of The Weber Group
for Cap Gemini Ernst & Young, 646-658-8209,


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