In business, you need a strategy. A vision of a successful future.
But here’s the catch: If your vision doesn’t include the utilization of constantly evolving technology, it’s incomplete. And I guarantee your competitors are factoring tech into their plans. Right now.
In 2020, organizations around the world will accelerate their investments in enterprise technology, according to research by IDC. They’re jumping on board the digital transformation bandwagon to become more competitive, improve connections with customers, and keep pace with the increasing demands of privacy regulations and security needs.
To find out more, we worked with IDC, tech leaders, and subject matter experts to identify six key technology trends that will drive these improvements throughout the year.
The big six
These are the trends we identified, in no particular order.
- Prioritize the cloud
Organizations will increasingly leverage managed cloud services to increase security and efficiency. CIOs and CTOs are seeing more and more value in outsourcing the management and hosting of their cloud infrastructure to experts, as these hosting organizations take care of:
- Backing up data
- Implementing the latest security measures
- Maintaining and updating solutions to ensure compliance with national and international regulations
- Scaling solutions up or down as data needs fluctuate
- Ensuring disaster recovery
Even traditionally risk-averse industries like healthcare and insurance are moving to the cloud. Two years ago, fewer than 20 percent of insurers were using cloud computing. Today, that number is more than 70 percent, according to industry analyst, Novarica.
It’s something to think about as we’re all shifting our focus to using data for a competitive advantage instead of simply managing it.
- Keep up with game-changing data and privacy regulations
The proliferation of state-wide, national, and international data and privacy regulations – such as GDPR and the California Consumer Privacy Act – is forcing organizations to rethink the way they manage and protect information. In fact, since the enforcement of GDPR began in May 2018, there have been approximately 90,000 separate data breach notifications, according to the European Data Protection Board.
That’s nearly 5,000 breaches per month. And, as the stakes continue to rise, so will the challenge of complying with ever-changing regulations.
One thing we know for sure, keeping data in perpetuity is no longer an option. Your organization needs to apply retention rules to both physical and digital records. As a result, organizations are using enterprise technology like content services solutions to automate document retention and records management policies. These solutions provide automated rules and workflows for common retention tasks like approvals, transfer to storage, archival, and deletion.
In 2020, forward-thinking organizations will increasingly leverage these solutions to meet regulations and minimize legal risks. I hope you’ll be joining them.
- Utilize blockchain
As business processes generate more and more data, and digital transactions increase, the need for transparency and authentication will continue to grow. From higher education to mortgage lending, blockchain is a viable way to provide those assurances across industries.
Here are just two examples of many:
- Blockchain can ensure the authenticity of student transcripts.
When a university receives a transfer student’s transcript directly from previous schools, it can use blockchain solutions to ensure the transcript remains unaltered. This not only provides authenticity, but it also creates an easier exchange of data with fewer intermediaries.
- Blockchain can enable financial institutions to automate the mortgage lending process.
This ensures error-free, trustworthy data. During a lending approval process, for example, banks could use blockchain to access a variety of accurate information like title deeds, loan packages, and property evaluations from third-party providers – all in one place via a distributed network.
- Use tech in the back office
The strong, yet unpredictable economy will drive organizations to seek efficiencies to become nimble and more competitive. In every industry, organizations will focus on reducing the cost and complexity of business processes by improving the efficiency of knowledge workers in the back office.
Accounts payable and other transactional departments will be increasingly embracing intelligent automation to establish a competitive edge. By leveraging technology like artificial intelligence, machine learning, and robotic process automation, organizations are enabling employees to focus on high-value tasks. Meanwhile, the organization is able to improve cash flow, capture early payment discounts, and improve speed and accuracy.
- Accelerate automation
Incredibly, 52% of the Fortune 500 companies that were operating in the year 2000 no longer exist, according to Harvard Business Review. This pace of change will accelerate as the rise of intelligent automation technology leads to the rise of new, born-digital organizations and the demise of older, less dynamic organizations.
For example, robotic process automation will have “digital workers” operating around the clock at blinding speeds – complementing human workers and eliminating tedious, repetitive manual tasks. Machine learning and artificial intelligence will augment the productivity of knowledge workers by driving more processes and making more contextual decisions.
Again, these technologies will free employees from mundane tasks and empower them to focus on important tasks like providing the best customer experience possible.
- Embrace tech as a customer loyalty tool
With the rise of consumerization of entire industries and the expectation for rapid response in every interaction, organizations are looking to speed processes to improve both employee and customer experiences.
In the past, organizations pursued operational efficiency in order to reduce costs and improve productivity. While those drivers remain, organizations are streamlining processes as a means of improving those experiences to increase loyalty both internally and externally.
In a subscription-driven world where adoption is the currency of the day, retaining customers is key. Content services technology plays a critical role in the quest to deliver better interactions internally and externally. That’s why, throughout the year, organizations will continue to expand their strategic use of content services to deliver better experiences and improve customer loyalty.
The time is now
There you have it – the six trends that will drive growth this year.
If your organization isn’t taking advantage of these trends yet, I hope you start working on your vision of a successful future – right now.
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