There is no simple way to describe or interpret 2020. The world was called to respond to challenges that impacted its most different fields. The scale of the pandemic repercussions on the national and international business fabric soon was felt, with the end of the situation still to be seen.
The need for operational resilience has never been more significant in all business functions and if the transition to digital, e-commerce and remote working have been positively accelerated by the pandemic, several spheres of companies are being tested.
In this atypical context, companies must prepare and consolidate their organizational and business strategies as complete and informed as possible. It is essential that they follow and monitor each market development and dominate trends, which will require organizations to be flexible, agile, reduce costs and have an (even) higher capacity to adapt to circumstances.
Automation on the front line
According to Gartner, hyper-automation is already considered inevitable and irreversible. Everything that can be automated must be automated. All IT automation initiatives will, until 2023 and globally, be supported by an expanding cloud ecosystem, for greater resource control and real-time analytics.
As an example, 75% of retail orders placed via e-commerce are expected to be collected on the street or in stores by 2023. In addition to this means a 35% increase in investment in micro-coverage centres, it is estimated that, during this year, 40% of the development activities carried out to prioritise the design and the user interface, to support the automation of contactless processes.
Automated processes allow you to optimise, free resources and reduce costs. Undoubtedly, today companies are looking for gains in productivity and agility that will enable them to be more competitive in an uncertain market. With the automation of processes, you get better results, excellent customer responses and higher time optimisation.
The cloud domain and the distributed cloud
According to IDC, by the end of 2021, 80% of companies will develop a mechanism to duplicate the acceleration of change to cloud-centric infrastructures and applications.
Also, most cloud computing service platforms will provide at least some services distributed over the next five years. It is the concept of “distributed cloud”, which involves the distribution of public cloud services to different physical locations while the operation, governance and evolution of these services remain under the responsibility of the public cloud provider.
The Cloud brings companies greater flexibility, data security and cost savings while providing higher productivity and cost savings.
The Internet of behaviours
The so-called internet of behaviours (IoB) arises, according to Gartner, as many technologies capture and use the data that people generate in their daily lives, data that organizations use to influence human behaviour.
Facial recognition, location tracking and Big Data solutions are part of the tools that connect the data that generate certain behaviours, such as shopping or using devices.
If, on the one hand, consumers demand excellent service, on the other, companies feel a constant need to differentiate themselves to retain customers, attract new audiences and be more competitive.
Knowing the consumer in detail to offer better products and services, without a doubt, will give the organization higher competitive advantages. A complete experience and following the interests and tastes of the consumer, excellent service in customer support and providing new services/products according to the insights obtained, are factors that will allow your company to differentiate itself and have a better performance.
Anywhere operations and digital parity
Before the pandemic, organizations had only 14% of their employees working from home. That percentage has risen to 45%, and today, many organizations believe that remote employees will continue to be a large part of the workforce in the future.
Supporting the hybrid workforce and ensuring that remote employees have the same connectivity and productivity tools as their colleagues in the office, will be essential to the success of long-term organizational strategies. Studies show that by 2023, 75% of companies will commit to providing technical parity to a hybrid workforce by choice and no longer by circumstance, allowing them to work together (separately) and in real-time.
In the same period, it is estimated that 40% of organizations will have already operated from anywhere to provide enhanced virtual and physical experiences, both for customers and employees.
It is a step beyond remote working and remote customer service, which includes: added-value experiences in collaboration and productivity, secure remote access, cloud and cutting-edge infrastructure, quantification of the digital experience and automation to support remote operations.
2021 will be a year in which companies will test their resilience, agility and responsiveness, and without a doubt, that Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence solutions allow them to adapt strategies quickly, and with the least possible impact, while at the same time giving efficiency gains, intelligence to decision-making and allow to optimise all the processes inherent to the activity.
Nowadays, all companies have new challenges, but it is essential to have access to the best tools that bring the right insights to make the best decisions, remain competitive and achieve better results in an unstable market with reduced consumption.
With the most disruptive technological solutions, talent and human resources will have to remain, physically and digitally, at the centre of companies’ operations. Aligning employees, partners, and customers is the essential fuel to overcome the challenges that we face and those that lie ahead in the day after of IT and organizations.
In short, it is not surprising that the trends highlighted this year are directly connected with the pandemic and with all the digital acceleration that is inherent to it. Regardless of the specificity of each one of them, organizations must ensure that they do not neglect what constitutes and will always constitute the highest asset they hold: their human capital.
Opinion article published in Sapo Tek – February, 2021