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Heather Ashton

Research Manager at IDC Manufacturing Insights
Heather Ashton on LinkedIn

Heather Ashton's Biography:

Heather Ashton is Research Manager for IDC Manufacturing Insights responsible for the service innovation practice. Ms. Ashton’s core research coverage includes the customer and service lifecycles in manufacturing, including CX and UX, field service, and warranty, as well as the impact of connected products on customer engagement and service transformation. Based on her coverage of connected products and innovation accelerators like IoT, AR/VR, and artificial intelligence, Ms. Ashton’s research also includes an emphasis on operating model transformation in manufacturing, including connected service and product-service systems. In automotive, Ms. Ashton’s research focuses on the impact of connected cars and emerging mobility options for Automotive OEMs’ business models and service offerings.


Previously, Ms. Ashton was a Principal Analyst at AM Consulting Services, covering topics as diverse as cloud computing, business intelligence and analytics, social business, sustainability, and business process management. Prior to that she founded and ran a start-up manufacturing company that launched Arch Angels®, a patented pediatric orthotic device. Prior to Arch Angels®, Ms. Ashton was Marketing Manager at VPN service provider OpenReach. Before joining OpenReach, Ms. Ashton worked for Hurwitz Group, Inc. as Director of E-Business Strategies.



  • B.A in English from Boston College, Scholar of the College distinction.
  • Regular contributor and provider of analysis to industry publications, including Industry Today and Field Technologies.
  • Ongoing participant on The Future of Cars with Game Changers radio program on Voice America.
  • Frequent speaker, presenter and moderator at industry conferences

Follow Heather on Twitter: @HashtonID

Presentation Title:

Digital Transformation in Manufacturing: Creating Ecosystem Experiences

Presentation Description:

The digital mission in manufacturing is to create experience ecosystems that transform the focus from designing, selling, and servicing complex products to one where the product becomes the platform. In response, manufacturers are expanding product development, sales, and service processes beyond the walls of the company to seamlessly collaborate with partners and suppliers and deliver exceptional customer experiences. Join us as we explore the impact of digital transformation on product configuration and customer engagement in the era of ecosystem experiences.