3 Digital Transformation Drivers to Watch in 2018
December 27, 2017 | Technology
2017 was an interesting year for the digital transformation movement. About two-third organizations worldwide began their digital journey, and interestingly, 70% of them failed (according to McKinsey). But on the bright side, these failures have brought a better sense in business executives about what digital transformation is, the constant change it brings to the organization, and how to successfully navigate around this change.
So, in 2018, we could see some tables turning around for better – higher success rates, improved change management, and further improved outcomes. But to ensure that these industry predictions are met, companies need to be aware of the tech, trends, and practices that will drive digital transformation in the imminent future. Let’s find out what they are:
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
With smart chatbots and voice assistants already becoming commonplace, AI may not seem like a new topic in 2018; but the truth is, so far, we have only scratched the surface when it comes to tapping AI’s potential. While it is a no brainer that chatbots will further mature in 2018, early adopters will also push for voice and visual search support on their web & mobile platforms.
Besides these, AI’s main implication will be in enhancing and automating core business processes like marketing, analytics, R&D, supply chain management, demand prediction, and customer services to help companies implicitly improve their bottom line. Apart from that, in 2018, it will become apparent that the onset of AI is mostly transformative, not disruptive. Meaning, AI enabled operations will augment humans, rather than replacing them.
Recommended Read: How AI Driving the Next Phase of Growth in Fintech
With bitcoin’s value rising crazily (probably jumping another few hundred dollars while you read this), blockchain – the tech behind its trading – has garnered good attention this past one year. And in 2018, this incorruptible digital ledger (which implicitly ensures identity protection and duplicity prevention) is expected to hit mainstream enterprise applications by offering solutions in digital identity authentication, payment systems, asset management, and much more.
Currently, the finance sector is leading the way for blockchain implementations. For instance, lending companies will no longer have to rely on rather opaque metrics to assess borrowers. They will have a transparent view of their transaction history. However, industries like finance, hospitality, automotive, and healthcare too are expected to see blockchain implementations on a global scale in 2018-2019.
Internet of Things
IoT has been a great source for data gathering from the very beginning. Now, with companies becoming hungry for data more than ever and at the same time these devices becoming smaller and cheaper, it is obvious that their implementation will see exponential growth in 2018. According to Gartner, by 2020, 95% of all electronic devices will have IoT technology embedded in them.
But we all know that. What’s interesting is that most IoT implementations will require real-time processing of data (such as in autonomous cars). As a result, transmission through cloud will soon be replaced by edge computing (direct communication between edge devices). According to IDC, by 2019, 43% of IoT computing will happen on the edge. In effect, the demand for edge computing software solutions for different cloud vendors will rise in coming years.
Besides these 3 prime digital transformation drivers, other innovative technologies such as AR will also play a transformative role in the coming year, especially in the customer experience layer. Additionally, as more and more firms opt for digital transformation, new change management challenges and solutions will surface, and hopefully, will help the market acquire an even better understanding of the digital transformation.
Companies making the digital shift need to know these trends, tech, and practices to stay at the top of the game. And apart from strategy and technology, companies will also need reliable partners to help them execute their goals to reap the full benefit of the digital promise.