In 2020, businesses will transform the way they function as the board-level conversations will be dominated by the need to embrace disruptive technologies to develop a future-proof workplace. Firms need to prepare their infrastructure and workforce for the smooth adoption of automation and other disruptive technologies.
With the competition getting stiffer, it has become more crucial for firms to deploy cutting-edge technology in their workplace to optimize and push productivity higher. Disruptive technologies in the day-to-day functioning of firms are not only a strategy but a necessity for businesses today. As per PwC, AI’s potential contribution to the global economy is predicted to reach $15.7 trillion by 2030. This shows how the adoption of technologies like AI is rapidly taking grip across the global economy and the way businesses function across nations.
The market for the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and the Internet of Things (IoT) will grow exponentially this year, as use cases for the technology continue to emerge across industries. The commercialization of IoT data will also increase, creating the data economy for IIoT. In 2020, IIoT platform services are predicted to continue turning to public cloud providers. The data collected from IoT devices will continue to connect the entire supply chain – from research and development to supply and delivery across different stages of manufacturing.
Considering the bigger picture, enterprises are currently stuck in the first phase of harnessing these disruptive technologies. Many firms still lack the foundational practices to generate value from disruptive technologies at scale without clear strategies for sourcing relevant data. As per research from Celonis, 45% of C-suite executives don’t know how to embark on the digital transformation journey. This is supported by the fact that 82% of business leaders admit that they are not involved in the internal processes to determine priorities before starting a tech-transformation initiative. Almost over 30% of firms have spent over £500,000 on such tech-transformation efforts; they need to understand the cruciality of establishing clear strategies before investing in such strategies.
Businesses rushing to deploy technologies without in-depth research are the ones who will see terrible failure. Instead, organizations need to look at the underlying inefficiencies within processes. Also, automation should only be considered only post root cause analysis of the existing inefficiencies. In 2020, firms should focus on prioritizing the development of what is called an ‘augmented collaboration at the workplace between humans and robots. The best example of such futuristic collaboration has been witnessed in the retail industry with Amazon Go-style stores adopting a completely automated cashier-less retail experience. Similar human-robot collaborations are expected to rule the workplaces across industries and sectors in the future.
People have been collaborating with technology like laptops and phones for years to simplify work. So, honestly, there is nothing new in the advent of human-machine convergence. Automation and advanced robotic technology will be capable of taking on the repetitive and time-consuming tasks, enabling humans to focus on the work, which will add some real value to the existing processes.
Another important consideration in 2020 will be that companies will need to prepare their current employees for this shift, as Gen Z will enter the workforce. With their own unique ideology, demands, and expectations, the new generation is more tech-savvy. A recent survey confirmed that the technology offered by an employer would influence 91% of people to switch or choose a job. In the coming year, companies need to focus on accelerating their preparation for attracting Gen Z, aligning the career development initiatives and company culture with their expectations.
With such rapid changes, it is hard to stick by the current scale of technology innovation. 2020 will be an exciting year for organizations across all industries as they shift their focus to adopting disruptive technologies. The priority for firms in 2020 should be to ensure a holistic experience for their customers, as well as preparing their workplace for a future that is dominated by disruptive technologies.