In 2018, blockchain technology will start maturing and see implementation across many enterprise applications.
In the VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous) world we inhabit today—where technology is changing at the speed of light—
enterprises are collaborating and also competing to be at the forefront of development. Building a systematic lifeline via technology and delivering products and solutions that put customers first is no longer optional, it’s a necessity for businesses to succeed and economies to flourish.
Remember, the deciding factor for an enterprise’s success in this ‘era of intelligence’ is not just the ability to evolve a corporate culture to optimise emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), robotics or blockchain and many others—but also to embrace the business and workforce strategies that put those technologies to work.
Here are some key trends that can help enterprises harness the technological changes to become more innovative, efficient and successful in 2018.
Enterprise security will become the #1 job, and much of it will be automated With today’s borderless enterprise—as a result of cloud, mobile and edge technologies like Internet of Things—there is a general consensus that there is no such thing as ‘total security’. As a result, business information can no longer be protected by the IT team trying to create digital castles and restrict access.
According to an Oracle research study, more mature users are going to recognise in the coming years that cloud provides better security than on-premises environments. It has been predicted that by 2025, 80% of cloud operations risk will vanish entirely, as a higher degree of intelligent automation permeates the cloud platform. Using machine learning and AI techniques, autonomous operations will anticipate outcomes, take remedial action, and be aware of real-time risks.
IoT will evolve from individual components to an integrated platform
In Gartner’s technology predictions for next year, analyst David Cearley commented on IoT saying that 2018 will be the year intelligent things proliferate, driving a ‘shift from stand-alone intelligent things to a swarm of collaborative intelligent things’. For Oracle, next year will be the year that these ‘swarms’ of smart devices begin to be tamed, as the focus moves away from the ‘things’ themselves to the integrated platforms that will turn IoT data into actionable insights and data-rich business models.
In the years to come, enterprises will fully realise how modernising data management allows for experimentation, how applications benefit from connection and extension, and how cloud improves the ability to drive better insights. We predict a strong market response to this need and the emergence of powerful platforms and applications that integrate, secure and enable IoT applications.
By the end of 2018, most of us will be chatting with chatbots
Forrester predicts that customer experience will be one of the biggest areas of focus next year, and chatbots will be one of the key technologies that will be found on every organisation’s strategic CX roadmap. Further, organisations will look to the cloud for help. Since chatbots are an increasingly requirement of cloud—one fifth of the respondents to a recent cloud survey cited this functionality as an essential requirement, organisations that get in and adopt them successfully early on, will steal a march on the competition.
Moreover, there will be a growing number of specialised ‘intelligent bots’ that will interact and learn from each other. For example, CEOs, CFOs or
employees will be able to inquire about company data; professionals such as doctors, pharmacists, lawyers, teachers, engineers, and service personnel can retrieve technical information; citizens and consumers can interact with service organisations.
Blockchain will emerge as a transformational technology
This is the year when blockchain technology starts to mature and be implemented across a range of enterprise applications, in many diverse industries. Firstly, certainty around blockchain will start to build over, as the push for technical standards starts to yield results. Secondly, the emergence of blockchain cloud services will help in bridging the skills gap that has until now slowed the development of blockchain.
As a result, blockchain technology will start to transform a range of business functions and sectors. This will be led by emerging applications in financial services and supply chains, but closely followed by innovations in healthcare, retail, and the public sector – basically, anywhere there is a need for a set of records to be shared across multiple trading partners, individuals or business entities.
As we usher in a new year of cutting-edge technology advancements, enterprises will need to continuously leverage the business potential of these emerging technologies and make their utilisation inherent in their overall IT strategy. Competition, the ever-demanding customer consumption patterns and evolving technologies is not going away: Embrace it and experience the benefits.