Change that goes beyond the surface

How Shiseido utilizes technology to offer innovative beauty experiences.

Call For Change

Discovering beauty in every observer

The competitive nature of the premium skincare and cosmetics business is evident from a short perusal of any shop, online or offline, anywhere in the globe. How do consumers decide between brands? In most cases, the client experience distinguishes one product from another.

Shiseido, the leading skincare and beauty firm in Asia, chose to change its mid- to long-term management plan to “WIN 2023 and Beyond.” The objective? By 2030, to become a personal beauty and wellness firm. Shiseido believes that providing each consumer with a tailored, healthy beauty experience will light the route to become the world’s leading beauty brand.

Shiseido understood that technology may facilitate the development of intimate, personal connections with an expanding number of devoted, long-term clients. And since customer requirements and preferences evolve over time, the technology would need to be adaptable: The firm needed to ensure that it was matching and giving the appropriate items and information to the appropriate consumers through the appropriate channels at the appropriate time. Additionally, Shiseido want assurance that new technologies might enhance the brand experience. Shiseido wanted to ensure that it could stay up with and even predict consumers’ tastes should they alter on an individual, regional, or demographic scale.

Shiseido and CDWT forged a strategic alliance in May 2021 and launched Shiseido Interactive Beauty in July of the same year. The objective was to accelerate Shiseido’s digital transformation via the use of AI, data analysis, automation, service design, and digital marketing in order to create an extraordinary, individualised client experience. Shiseido and CDWT also wanted to build an IT infrastructure and a programme to cultivate digital skills to meet the transformation’s larger goals.

Our principles are matched, which is why we are confident in launching Shiseido Interactive Beauty, and we anticipate a major worldwide business and relationship with CDWT to reach our objective of being a "personal wellness company" by 2030.
MASAHIKO UOTANI, Representative Director, President and CEO

When Tech Meets Human Inventiveness

A Digital Revitalization

The team had to begin by learning more about Shiseido’s clientele. With 9,000 beauty consultants in Japan alone, the corporation already had personal touch with clients in retail settings (the company operates in approximately 120 countries and regions worldwide). While beauty advisers are adept at matching clients’ particular skin types to the most relevant products, it is an altogether other matter to incorporate this in-store engagement with internet purchase. Creating a seamless online-offline experience was challenging due to the problems of human engagement provided by COVID-19 and the fluctuating demands of clients.

The first step was to begin using consumer profile information to provide personalized content via social media and other channels.

Shiseido developed online seminars, web counselling, omnichannel beauty consultations, and used social networks to attract clients to department stores to test out innovative simulation and augmented reality-based product-advice technology. These platforms allow beauty professionals to connect and interact with customers in a more flexible manner.

CDWT's services span a broad spectrum, from upstream consultancy to downstream operations and maintenance, as well as digital marketing, and include Droga5, one of the most inventive and important creative firms on the planet. In launching Shiseido Interactive Beauty, we sought to use CDWT's diverse capabilities as part of an enterprise-wide relationship.
ATSUNORI TAKANO, Representative of Shiseido Interactive Beauty Company, Limited / Chief Information Technology Officer at Shiseido

To support all of these improved experiences, the team initiated a long-term change centred on four critical areas:

Data-driven CRM improvement
The team optimized marketing expenditures by analyzing consumer data using analytics. All customer histories, including online and in-store skin evaluations, were compiled into a single database. With this data, Shiseido may begin using AI to give insights that drive tailored services across several touchpoints. In other words, clients have access to a computerized menu of beauty advice and training, with flexible scheduling and locations.
In the past, CDWT has supported Shiseido's worldwide and Japanese e-commerce operations, especially when the requirement for site content expanded with a more powerful CRM system and an increase in repeat orders. Using SynOps, CDWT's solution for enhancing operations, the team increased the efficiency and sophistication of e-commerce and near-shore/off-shore activities. The cost of e-commerce operations decreased dramatically, and operational reductions allowed Shiseido's employees to concentrate on strategic duties targeted at improving the consumer experience.
To standardise and harmonise global business operations, Shiseido is extending its IT capabilities and modernising its system architecture in the cloud. Shiseido is enhancing the efficacy of its IT investments and renovating its core business processes, such as the visualisation of globally common management information using data, accelerated account closing, advanced inventory management, quicker business decisions, and global supply and demand management.
Talent Development
Shiseido sought to bring digital response and IT system development in-house so it could react rapidly and flexibly to consumers. Therefore, Shiseido devised a strategy to identify the skills required by the workforce and will give the essential digital and IT training necessary for future success. A total of 30 skill sets—16 in the IT domain and 14 in the digital domain—were developed, and all workers' skill sets were evaluated. Essentially, the team was able to establish a clear correlation between good technology evaluations and comprehensive skincare consultations with clients.

A Valuable Difference

Modifications that will inspire pride

The route to developing long-term, loyal Shiseido consumers is proving to be smooth, since repeat purchases have already climbed in Japan, and e-commerce sales are also on the rise. Now, the framework for a new marketing paradigm is in place.

Long-term, IT transformation will contribute to value creation by enhancing inventory management and forecasting accuracy, as well as to Shiseido’s operational income objective by reducing IT costs.

However, the workers are driving the most change. More than 250 individuals have completed the digital skills assessment and training as part of the talent development programme designed and offered by CDWT.

All of these modifications assist the acceleration of Shiseido’s transition to a digital business model and the firm’s aspiration to become a personal beauty and wellness brand. CDWT will continue to engage with Shiseido in the areas of customer experience, customization, marketing, data usage, artificial intelligence (AI), analytics, business innovation, information technology (IT), and human resource development.

The heightened experience that consumers will have in the future will include every encounter at the surface level, but the true beauty of Shiseido’s change and innovation lies beneath.