When it comes to forecasting technology trends, there is no crystal ball — let’s face it, it’s anybody’s guess as to what will be trending by 2022. But, on top of revenue growth, CEOs have three priorities: digitalization, improved business efficiency and reduced labor costs. While the three goals are interrelated with one another, each goal is driven by one primary factor. For instance, digitalization has clear benefits for organizations — especially if you consider intangible factors such as the customer experience and brand reputation. Digitalization drives sales faster than any other means of communication. Improving business efficiency provides a competitive advantage and can free up employees to work on projects that drive revenue growth. And reduced labor costs are important for any organization when considering having a larger supply chain or increasing your global footprint.
IT decision makers of businesses and business technology at the enterprise level are clearly in a race to keep up with the rate of technological innovation and transformation. They understand that every successful business strategy must have a software component, and therefore the focus on innovation and organizational transformation is clear.
This is why the coming year will be a major transformational period for enterprise technology, as organizations and technology companies continue to invest in initiatives to embrace a digital transformation — both at the technology and organization levels. If we consider the legacy issues many companies have with technology, as well as the growth of open source, cloud, big data and edge computing, there is no doubt that the ecosystem is ripe for digital transformation. However, transformation is more than just an addition of new technologies; it’s about how these technologies are being adopted and are changing the way work is done at an organization. It’s about agility, simplification and the ability to meet changing needs at speed.
Cybersecurity: Moving to the Center Stage
Global threats and attacks will continue to plague enterprises, and it is clear that cybersecurity will become a greater focus for organizations. The cyber threat landscape is becoming increasingly diverse and sophisticated, and the risk and impact of a cyberattack on a company is no longer a matter of if, but when. With the increasing demands on organizations for greater visibility, the ability to quickly share data and the ability to change and control critical business operations, cybersecurity has emerged as a much-needed factor for a successful business strategy.
While many organizations face challenges in executing their security initiatives, the coming year will see cybersecurity become a greater focus, as more investment dollars are dedicated toward prevention and detection. The majority of these efforts are expected to target legacy applications and systems in place, with data breaches hitting the headlines and the sector being plagued by ransomware and increasingly sophisticated cyber threats.
Cloud And SaaS: Converging The Enterprise
Organizations will continue to migrate to the cloud, spurred on by customer requirements and the need for agility, scalability and cost management. In fact, the entire industry is undergoing a transformation as we see “shadow IT” grow as a result of businesses using technology to solve operational challenges. The move to the cloud is further hampered by complexity — the skill gap is increasing and traditional IT organizations are unable to keep up with the pace of change. As a result, many companies are looking to outsource or collaborate with a third-party partner to deliver solutions more quickly, effectively and at scale. In 2022, organizations will need to consider whether to move to the cloud and stay ahead of the curve in terms of security and compliance, or risk being left behind in a competitive landscape.
Emerging technologies like AI and machine learning are rapidly becoming a common part of business operations across industry sectors and within enterprises, and we can expect AI/machine learning to be integrated into every major technology and IT sector in the coming years. In 2022, we will see AI/machine learning driving a stronger focus on operations, using advanced analytics and cognitive technologies to streamline processes and increase efficiency. It is likely that more organizations will adopt a hybrid approach to AI/machine learning, focusing on the areas that truly make a difference to the organization’s bottom line.
From the early 2000s, there has been a massive uptake of data across enterprise businesses. However, as the volume of data continues to rise, the level of complexity – and associated risk — that exists within it is causing many organizations to take a step back and rethink their approach to data. Already, organizations are spending more time thinking through the data elements required to assess risk, balance business performance and gain a competitive advantage. They will start to see benefits from this as they mature their approach, incorporating machine learning to optimize and enhance their data capabilities.
The impact of digital disruption on the modern CIO is only beginning to be understood. Many new technologies and markets are creating new requirements for the CIO to address as they emerge. CIOs are relied on as a strategic business partner that is able to use technology to balance the inherent tensions between business needs, customer experience, regulatory compliance and risk management. With new technologies continually evolving and bringing the enterprise more complex, the demand on the modern CIO will continue to grow and be at the forefront of business decision making. In 2022, we expect CIOs will be at the center of executive decision making and leading the management team in the digital economy.
The other key themes for the year ahead are regulation, trust and transparency. As we move forward, organizations will need to consider and anticipate their cybersecurity threats and associated compliance risks. Organizational culture is being transformed as organizations work to ensure that their data and systems are secure and that this is being communicated effectively and efficiently to employees and business partners. The emergence of AI/machine learning will bring a number of challenges for businesses but also offer great opportunities for those who can leverage the power of machine learning to get the best outcomes from their employees and improve business performance.
Whatever your technology focus in 2022, The Launchpad can help. Reach out, tell us your plans and we’ll find the perfect partners who are a precise fit for your company and needs. We’ll fast track and simplify your tech vendor discovery process.