AI, cybersecurity & technology at Appsbroker CTS

Manufacturing 2024
Manufacturing 2024
Ryan den Rooijen, Chief Operating Officer of Google-only digital consultancy Appsbroker CTS, shares his 2024 manufacturing predictions

Ryan den Rooijen is the Chief Operating Officer of Appsbroker CTS, the largest Google-only digital consultancy in EMEA. Having worked at Google, Dyson, and in luxury retail, during his career he has advised more than a hundred organisations on how the right blend of technical and commercial leadership can deliver a meaningful competitive advantage.

“My job generally involves three things: understanding our customers’ strategic challenges, ensuring we have the capabilities to address them, and creating an environment that top talent can thrive in. Currently, our customers are particularly interested in generative artificial intelligence (GenAI) and cybersecurity – two critical areas of investment, even in this macro environment.”

Here, Rooijen tells us about his roles and shares his 2024 manufacturing predictions. 


What led you to this industry?

“I started my career as a developer of web applications. After a few years I completed a graduate degree focusing on social data analytics, which led me to Google. There I held a number of roles, culminating in insights & analytics supporting Google’s largest global accounts. I then went client-side, first at Dyson, and then as CDO for Chalhoub, a large luxury retail group.

“My time at Google opened my eyes to the incredible potential of digital technologies. Yet after years client-side, I learned navigating the hype around artificial intelligence and cybersecurity is painful. In my role at Appsbroker CTS, I hope to resolve this paradox – helping organisations close the gap between the present and the possible through meaningful operational change.”


Tell us about Appsbroker CTS.

“Until recently CTS and Appsbroker were two separate entities. CTS was one of Google’s largest cloud partners in Europe, helping businesses modernise their tech stack through the power of Google Cloud. Appsbroker was one of the leading Google Cloud agile system integrators in Europe, providing deep engineering expertise for leading brands. In October, they merged to form Appsbroker CTS.

“As the largest Google-only digital consultancy in EMEA, we are laser-focused on delivering critical operational solutions, particularly around GenAI, cybersecurity, and marketing technology. These are force multipliers for organisations’ profitability. We do not believe in technology for technology’s sake as too often this leads to mediocre outcomes. We want to make the extraordinary possible.

“The manufacturing industry is well positioned to seize these opportunities. After all, automated processes in particular can yield valuable data. In one project I led, we used diagnostic data from manufacturing robots, streamed it into Google Cloud Platform, and used machine learning to predict how production yield could be increased – leading to multi-million dollar optimisations.”


Tell us about your 2024 predictions.

“Next year promises to be interesting. While the macro environment will likely remain challenging, organisations will need to step up their cybersecurity investments in order to deal with the evolving threat landscape. Similarly, generative AI is developing at such a rapid pace that organisations will need to move quickly lest they risk falling behind their competitors – as the potential is vast.

“This has implications for ownership of the digital transformation agenda within organisations. No longer can these be delegated to digital leaders. Instead, COOs and CEOs need to embrace technologies to reshape their core operations. From defect detection, to process automation, workforce management, procurement optimisation, or customer service, opportunities are myriad.

“One aspect of manufacturing is that many of the product line assets lack connectivity to the cloud. This poses an interesting quandary for organisations: is it better to wait until the next generation of equipment is introduced with cloud-native capabilities, or is it worth retrofitting existing assets? What is clear is that machine data has a significant role to play beyond production diagnostics.

“We recently surveyed IT leaders within manufacturing companies who told us that understanding the potentially disruptive impact of generative AI on the industry is a top priority for them. Given that nearly two-thirds of respondents admitted that they lack the internal skills and knowledge to implement AI, it is clear that the optimism around generative AI needs to be appropriately tempered.”

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