With the New Year underway and as you take on new challenges for 2019, you might be wondering what digital transformation trends you can expect for the year ahead. From multi-cloud solutions, to machine learning technologies and AI, to compliance and data protection, 2019 will be rich in digital evolution.
As businesses become increasingly aware of the importance of digital transformation, the focus is less on technology adoption and more on strategic change, or how to create a competitive advantage with the best-adapted recipe for said transformation.
We’ve rounded up our top six digital transformation trends to help steer you in the right direction for a successful year in the Cloud.
There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to the public cloud. The era of monolithic digital solutions has ended and businesses not using multi-cloud models will represent the minority in the upcoming years. According to RightScale’s most recent State of the Cloud Report, more than 80% of companies are now running multi-cloud environments with up to five different cloud platforms.
A Hybrid Cloud model can offer a transitory solution that allows companies the flexibility to adopt the cloud at their own pace for a more gradual transition to the cloud. That said, hybrid models should not be used as a permanent solution, as maintaining part of your IT solution on-premise will prevent you from leveraging the complete benefits of the cloud, and management of such solutions is cumbersome. Inversely, a customized, multi-cloud model is a flexible option that can help meet more of your business needs, as CIOs and IT specialists are realizing that some clouds are more appropriate for certain workloads than others. It is no longer about choosing one supplier, but about designing the best strategy comprised of the best mix of digital solutions.
The importance of automation
The scale and complexity of hybrid multi-cloud systems makes automation increasingly indispensable. With these complex systems on the rise, manual processes and decision-making are simply not sufficient to maintain high performance and quality. Companies of all sizes will be looking to manage their cloud architecture with tools that can automate different processes, simplifying cloud administrators’ jobs, saving time and eliminating manual processes such as sizing and backups.
Demise of the corporate intranet
As AODocs CEO Stéphane Donzé included in his content management predictions for 2019, corporate intranets that are clunky and have low adoption rates will meet their demise in the upcoming year. While these programs have good intentions, execution is poor leading users to adopt non-sanctioned tools to do their jobs, resulting in shadow IT. To help combat shadow IT, CIOs will focus on solutions like Workplace by Facebook and chatbots, which can provide social collaboration inside an organization and deliver a strong user experience, all while ensuring compliance with existing processes and regulation.
Better bots: chatbots go from good to great
Thanks to machine learning algorithms, chatbots will improve significantly in 2019. As progress continues to be made on natural language programming, conversations with chatbots are increasingly resembling live chat agents for more humanlike customer experiences. According to Forbes and a study by SpiceWorks, some 40% of large businesses have or will adopt NLP, or chatbot solutions by the end of 2019, primarily in customer service functions but increasingly in internal processes. Beyond simple chatbots, more companies will also be implementing life-like animated virtual agents.
Revevol’s HR bot for Workplace by Facebook is one example of how to bring simplicity and efficiency to your company’s HR processes.
The growth of machine learning and artificial intelligenceThis brings us to our next point. We produce and collect so many data these days, that AI and machine learning are becoming crucial to efficiently processing these mass amounts of data. In the upcoming year, companies will make better use of the data they’re collecting to improve decision-making and operations strategies. AI and machine learning along with data analytics tools will be the vehicle for these improvements.
According to a Forrester report, AI will, as a result, spark a real marketing renaissance, as deep data processing and AI-powered marketing help businesses understand human behavior and emotions. This will lead to better, more personalized and real time marketing campaigns.
GDPR and security matterWith digital transformations reaching greater complexity including hybrid and multi-cloud solutions, security concerns are more important than ever. While technology empowers businesses with new possibilities for innovation, security cannot be overlooked. Since the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was enforced in 2018, governments are cracking down more than ever about making sure companies don’t cut corners on compliance. While data security has always been a priority when it comes to the public cloud, GDPR is the start of a more global trend that will hold companies accountable for how they treat privacy and personal data.
Needless to say, GDPR will still be a thing throughout 2019 and companies must assure their data practices are both safe and compliant. These security and governance concerns will further encourage enterprises to invest in automation centers linked to public cloud providers. According to Forrester’s report, about 40% of enterprises will have automation centers in place in 2019.