If there’s one thing the last few years have taught us is that we are relying on technology more than ever – both in our personal and professional lives. In the UK, for example, technology’s impact in their healthcare has proven beneficial to patients and healthcare workers alike. Convenience, real-time data collection, and accessibility are some benefits that technology did for healthcare. Gavin Bashar, UK & I managing director at Tunstall Healthcare, shares an article on Med-Tech Innovation News of certain technologies trends to consider in the healthcare sector and how we will continue to benefit with these digital advancements.
- Hospitals at home will become more common. “Since the pandemic, we have continued to see the growth of virtual wards, and we’re expecting to see them become more of a focus in health and care delivery. Most of the population would rather receive care in the comfort of their own homes, and virtual wards will enable this.”
- The growth of consumer engagement. “Consumers across our population are becoming increasingly technologically savvy and understanding of the benefits of digital devices and how to use them. This digital upskilling of the nation will encourage the integration of readily available consumer devices within clinical practices and care delivery, to engage with citizens and support improved health outcomes.”
- Improved cohesion to support frontline workers. “Integrated Care Systems (ICSs) are moving to ensure our services can facilitate efficient data-led decision making in care delivery, which is a crucial step in becoming a global leader in population health management. Through this, we will see more cohesion and improved data gathering from technology providers and data companies.
Workplace trends are constantly changing. The level of collaboration within departments of an organization are affected by these changes as well. An essential collaboration between two departments are IT and HR. Enterprise technology Clint Boulton shares an article on Forbes on the relationship between IT and HR and how the latest workplace trends greatly affect both departments. Workplace trends are evolving quicky, says Boulton, introducing more complexity into organizations. An explosion in data-centric technologies and other digital trends has heightened the importance of strong IT-HR collaboration. These latest trends are driving IT and HR to work together more closely, according to Boulton:
- Hybrid work. It’s no surprise that the hybrid workspace is a staple in today’s workspace. The COVID-19 pandemic saw many people switch to remote work. Since then, many organizations have adopted the hybrid work week. Boulton says of this trend: “IT leaders and HR managers have been huddling on technologies, processes and policies working in both corporate and home offices since hybrid work practices have proliferated. Social distancing policies, technical workarounds and accommodating optimal work-life balance once dominated these huddles. Increasingly, HR and IT are shifting focus to supporting employees in organizations where leaders are expecting to see more employees in corporate offices than they have in recent years.”
- AI/ML. “The biggest issue IT and HR must contend with includes concerns about workforce automation. Earlier AI tools gave employees working in back-office roles cause for pause. Generative AI is casting new light on how technology may be used to augment creative functions, which will require more conversations between HR and IT about how to manage associated concerns. IT and HR will have to educate employees about how using automation technologies can help them perform better in their roles. And as generative AI use grows in organizations, IT and HR will have to work closely to mitigate associated governance issues,” says Boulton.
- Data Analytics. For the organizations who have adopted hybrid work styles or even stayed fully remote, this decision was most likely made by information collected from employees and their input on the future of their work environment. “As hybrid policies reshape the world of knowledge work, business leaders are looking for data about how effective employees are at doing their job,” says Boulton. “This has given rise to an emerging category of data-crunching tools known as workplace analytics, which gauge such details as how long employees spend on work tasks, which tasks they are spending the most time on, as well as the output and outcomes of those workstreams. HR meanwhile may seek workplace analytics from IT that helps them measure the success of diversity and inclusion efforts by analyzing hiring practices and promotion rates. This can help HR pinpoint areas for improvement, as well as make changes that curb employee attrition.”
- Data protection and compliance. “Organizations naturally produce vast amounts of data, critical and trivial. As corporate stewards, IT and HR leaders have significant stakes in how information is generated, shared and used, as well as how it’s protected. Perhaps no area of focus has attracted the attention of HR and IT of late than the impact of AI consumption on corporate data. Of chief concern is the potential for leaks of proprietary corporate data and IP in these tools, many of which are easily available and unmonitored. Organizations must remind employees about best practices for safeguarding corporate data in the face of data privacy, security, bias and ethical issues. IT and HR have key roles working with compliance and other stakeholders to develop, implement and pass down such policies to the broader organization,” says Boulton.
The major takeaway to these trends, Boulton concludes, is that the workplace is evolving rapidly for IT leaders and their HR counterparts and they need to be ahead of the curve ready for these changes this year and beyond.
Even before the start of the pandemic, the retail space has been integrating some technological tools here and there. Since then, we’ve seen this new normal of tech-infused shopping experiences. With the hottest technology trends being integrated in almost every industry, what will the future of retail look like? Rajendra Roul, Content Promotion Specialist at G2, along with retail experts around the globe, share 6 retail technology trends for 2023 and beyond
- AI, machine learning (ML), and generative AI. “AI and ML technologies have infiltrated all industries, including retail. In fact, the retail industry has been the testing ground for AI solutions for a long time. The most popular use of AI by a retailer is the recommendation engine released by Amazon over two decades ago. The ML algorithm recommends related products to customers based on their previous shopping history, location, and purchase habits of other similar customers. Going forward, retailers need to double down on AI and related technologies.”
- Automation. “Another area retailers must step up investments in 2023 is automation, the process of using technologies to perform repetitive tasks with minimal human intervention. The ongoing labor gaps have fueled the need for automation in every area within the retail sector, from warehousing, inventory management, and order fulfillment to consumer-facing features like contactless payments, noted Gabriella Bock, director of editorial relations at Rethink Retail. The recent advancements in AI, ML, and robotics are powering a new age of intelligent automation where machines are capable of making data-driven decisions on their own.”
- Augmented reality (AR). “AR is the next big thing for retailers. It has been popular for quite some time now in the retail space. But after the pandemic, AR technology has become more important as shoppers try to bridge the gap between online and physical shopping. Augmented reality provides interactive experiences by adding computer-generated digital content to real-world objects. AR has many applications in retail such as product visualization, interactive in-store experiences, in-store navigation, and marketing campaigns.”
- RFID, QR codes, and other smart store technologies. “Adopting smart store technologies is paramount for brick-and-mortar retailers looking to enhance their omnichannel experience. DeAnn Campbell, chief strategy officer at Hoobil8, noted that a top priority among them for any brand should be tools to manage inventory, including radio-frequency identification (RFID) and QR codes. RFID and QR codes are technologies that help identify and track an item using tags and codes. It helps with real-time inventory checks. Cameras and sensors are also essential to other upcoming smart store technologies, like smart carts that help with automatic billing and smart shelves that track inventory.”
- Mobile technologies. “The ubiquity of smartphones makes mobile technologies like shopping apps, mobile payment systems, and personalized marketing via phones inevitable in retail. Two-thirds of shoppers use their phones to look for more product information while shopping in-store. Further, mobile commerce or m-commerce, the shopping that happens exclusively via mobile phones, is set to exceed 10%of all retail transactions in the U.S. by 2025.While the pandemic accelerated its adoption, Tim Koopmans, CEO and founder of Retail Rush, noted that mobile technologies have tremendous potential for enhancing customer experiences and optimizing store operations in the future. Mobile technology helps retailers promote special events and deliver pertinent information to customers, driving foot traffic. Combined with RFID, QR code, and other in-store technology, mobile technologies help with faster checkout, online order fulfillment, and better customer service.”
- Datafication. “To fully harness the power of technology, retailers must leverage robust retail data analytics and insights platforms. Problems like siloed data, legacy infrastructure, and the inability to share and receive data from different sources often hold back retailers from fully utilizing analytics today. Integrating granular store-level data collected from online and brick-and-mortar stores provides retailers with unprecedented insight, added Brad LaRock of Datasembly. These insights can be used for personalization, product management, price optimization, and streamlining store and warehouse operations, driving more sales.”
Living in this digital age where our personal and professional lives mainly revolve online opens up so much vulnerability and risks for our privacy. Online predators are beyond skilled and unforgiving. That’s why it’s important to build a strong cybersecurity structure. Keri Pearlson, executive director of cybersecurity at the MIT Sloan School of Management, believes that enterprise leaders must shift their focus from protection to resilience. “We need to assume the bad guys are going to be in our systems, find new ways to hack us, and continually innovate to reach their goals,” she explains. It’s important to know how your cybersecurity infrastructure works, especially at an enterprise level. Technology Journalist & Author John Edwards shares an article on InformationWeek.com depicting common cybersecurity fails and how to prevent them from becoming a larger issue.
Coordinating Vulnerability. “Only by acknowledging and sharing the vulnerabilities and mistakes that lead to breaches can security be improved for all organizations. One way to embrace transparency is by adopting a vulnerability disclosure program (VDP) that provides a plan for how vulnerabilities should be reported. “At its core, it’s a ‘see something, say something’ policy,” says Kayla Underkoffler, lead security technologist at security services firm HackerOne. “This helps organizations coordinate with security researchers through clear guidelines and avoid premature or accidental publication of vulnerabilities that may still pose risks to an organization.”
Operations and Risk. “Alisa Chestler, chair of the data protection, privacy, and cybersecurity team at law firm Baker Donelson, urges organizations to stop viewing security planning as a strictly cyber issue. Chestler recommends creating a strong governance program, one that requires regularly scheduled management team meetings devoted solely to security issues.
One of the biggest barriers to implementing a working governance program is enterprise culture, particularly resistance from less-informed management team members. Chestler believes that winning management support for strong security governance can be achieved through persistent knowledge sharing. Continuing to present news about current cybersecurity events is one way to move management to understand how critical their role is in the continued effort to reduce risks to the organization, especially to new threats as they evolve, she recommends.”
Overconfidence Kills. “Perhaps the biggest cybersecurity mistake an organization can make is becoming overconfident in its ability to respond successfully to today’s sophisticated, wide-ranging attacks. ‘Threat actors are constantly evolving their tactics and techniques to circumvent defenses,’ explains Phil Quitugua, a director at technology research and advisory firm ISG. Keeping pace with the threat landscape and performing regular assessments should be table stakes for enterprise cybersecurity. ‘A continuous improvement approach to cybersecurity is key to avoiding overconfidence,’ Quitugua says. Additionally, validating that security controls are behaving as expected should be a never-ending process.”
There have been new data trends that show technology, profitability and savings are at the top of the list for business leaders to focus on these days. Decision makers also see that enterprise technology is indispensable to their business goals – but not all technology is alike. Forbes council member Monish Darda, cofounder & CTO at Icertis, shares an article describing several ways why emerging technology is the key to growing your company in 2023.
Increase Efficiency And Reduce Costs Through Automation. “Cutting costs and driving efficiency are top of mind for business leaders as companies look to do more with fewer resources. Because cost saving is a direct function of efficiency, companies should look to invest in and implement emerging technologies that will automate business processes and create value quickly in order to drive revenue. We’ve seen how robotics and automation can tackle tedious tasks, reducing labor costs and the time employees spend performing mundane work. In 2023, we will see generative AI play a larger role in increasing productivity across enterprises, and we may even see companies leverage generative AI for scenario planning and forecasting future events.”
Strengthen Customer Relationships. “With consumer behavior and expectations continuing to shift, how can suppliers ensure that customers recognize their value? Existing technologies like customer relationship management (CRM) solutions paired with new machine learning capabilities will enhance the customer experience at every touchpoint. Many top companies have already implemented AI to bolster customer engagement and retention, creating more unique experiences that meet customers’ individual needs.”
Better Data Management For Faster Decision Making. “When implemented across the enterprise, emerging technologies can provide tools and systems that allow companies to analyze large amounts of data faster and more effectively. Solutions like AI-powered supply chain management or contract lifecycle management (CLM), for example, are foundational technologies that enable companies to structure and organize data across the enterprise in order to surface unique insights and make critical decisions in real time. This type of technology leverages data to create cost savings and demonstrate compliance, enabling businesses to reduce risk in addition to supporting revenue. As enterprises look to thrive rather than just survive in the year ahead, business leaders should seek out solutions that integrate data and help turn it into an advantage to drive strategic outcomes.”
The ever-changing economic climate, thanks to technological advancements, has changed the way we teach our students. No longer is the traditional classroom with pencil and paper and dated textbooks the “norm”. There are more innovative approaches to teaching and learning thanks to the modern technologies we have to offer. From remote learning to technological teaching aids, today’s tech solutions have the potential to curate effective learning experiences. Slava Podmurnyi, Forbes Councils Member and CEO and co-founder of Visartech Inc. shares an article that delves deep into the ways technology is transforming the education sector, changing the ways of the modern classroom.
- AI-Generated Teachers. “With the integration of AI technology into the education industry, a new learning assistant has emerged. The AI-generated teacher is a technology solution that seamlessly takes over a lesson or course from a human teacher. This technology offers students personalized instruction and feedback based on their unique learning needs and styles. With this type of technology solution, students could build their confidence in speaking and then apply their skills in a real classroom setting with classmates.”
- Web-Based Conferencing Tools. “This technology offers fully synchronous and web-based teaching, which has the potential to be more effective than hybrid or dual-mode teaching. With enhanced visibility, interactivity, and breakout rooms, educators can deliver virtual sessions with ease and students can participate in real time.”
- 360-Degree Student Analytics. “360-degree student analytics provides a full view of students’ academic, social and behavioral interactions. Educators get data from various sources to understand their students’ needs and challenges better. With this view, educational institutions and online learning platforms can offer personalized study plans that are more effective than traditional teaching methods.”
- Zero-Trust Security. “With sensitive data such as student records and financial information at risk, it is essential to implement effective security measures. Cyberattacks in the education sector rose by 44% in 2022, likely due to the transition toward remote learning and the increased use of online education platforms. As a result, the education industry has become a prime target for cybercriminals. However, implementing zero-trust security measures could significantly minimize the risk of data breaches and cyberattacks. The zero-trust security model works on the idea that we should never automatically trust anyone or anything, and always check to make sure they are safe.”
- 3D-Powered Brain Breaks. “Studies have shown that it is nearly impossible to study for extended periods without taking breaks. In fact, a recent survey found that 91% of teachers believed that incorporating Brain Break video segments improved their students’ focus and concentration. To make these breaks more engaging and effective, 3-D technology can be helpful. For example, 3-D puzzle games or 3-D break journeys might offer an enjoyable and immersive experience for students.”
- Smart Campus. “A smart campus refers to an advanced technological infrastructure that leverages the internet of things (IoT) and other digital technologies to improve the operational efficiency of educational institutions. The technology solution is designed to automate processes, enhance communication and connectivity, and optimize energy management. In recent years, a growing number of universities and colleges have started to adopt smart campus solutions.”
The next generation and beyond will adapt a more digitized learning environment, and Podmurnyi insists we stay ahead of the curve right now. Communicating and speaking with the language of today’s students is essential for a more engaged and motivated classroom. However, he notes, we must understand that technology only enhances learning. Great educators provide the great teaching and motivation to their students in their classroom. We need to combine technology and excellent teaching to inspire students in their learning experience.
With growing technology means growing companies. The hot topic today is moving to the cloud. The latest trend with this is adopting a multicloud strategy, a move that comes with multiples benefits – if done right of course. There are challenges involved in a multicloud strategy, but none that cannot be tackled head on to prevent future issues. Member of the Forbes Technology council share some of the challenges that can come with managing a multicloud strategy, with advice on how to help businesses through each issue to ensure multicloud success.
- Managing Data Security And Compliance. “One challenge in managing workloads across multiple cloud environments is ensuring data security and compliance. Businesses can prepare for this by implementing robust security policies, utilizing encryption and access control measures and conducting regular audits to ensure adherence to industry standards and regulatory requirements.” – Remo Peduzzi, ICR Informatik AG
- Avoiding Data Fragmentation. “In today’s business landscape, scaling your company naturally leads to an increase in the amount of data generated, processed and stored, making cloud environments a necessity. However, this growth in data can result in fragmentation, making it crucial to take control of your data through automation and standardization before it becomes unmanageable.” – Daniel Korogodski, First Bridge
- Ensuring Reliable Tenant Access And Resource Security. “Leveraging cloud technology across multiple cloud environments will enable business continuity in the event of downtime in any one of the environments. Two of the challenges l see will be maintaining access to the tenants and possible security issues. To prepare for this change, businesses should ensure that tenant access and resources within multiple cloud environments are adequately secured.” – Nihinlola Adeyemi, ErrandPay Limited
- Ensuring Integration And Compatibility Between Different Platforms. “Ensuring seamless integration and compatibility between different cloud platforms is an understated challenge. With the increasing popularity of multicloud and hybrid cloud strategies, businesses may find themselves using multiple cloud providers, each with its own set of tools, APIs and interfaces—blending all of them is a gargantuan engineering hurdle in itself.” – Prashanth Balasubramanian, Striga
- Getting The Most Out Of A Multicloud Strategy. “Taking cloud-native approaches to developing applications and incorporating good design principles from the beginning can help companies make the most of multicloud services. Instead of focusing on managing workloads, it is better to design applications to take full advantage of the capabilities of cloud services. Embracing containerization through infrastructure as a service instead of traditional workload management can be beneficial when serverless architectures are not suitable.” – Brad Mallard, Version 1
- Monitoring Permissions. “In my experience, basic controls are still an issue for many cloud deployments. Monitoring permissions for corporate data stored in AWS, Azure and other platforms is a fundamental control that is often reviewed only annually. This leaves corporate data at risk if permissions are not set correctly.” – John Bruggeman, CBTS
- Managing FinOps. “Organizations are on multicloud platforms to avoid vendor lock-in or to manage business demands (or sometimes even by accident). Whatever the reasons for a multicloud strategy might be, FinOps—matching the available cloud budget with costs across the divisions within an organization—is the pinnacle of all the multicloud challenges organizations face. CFOs often lack a real-time, “single pane of glass” view of the budget versus spending trends across cloud platforms.” – Srini Gajula, Sage IT INC
- Controlling The Cost And Complexity Of Collaboration. “One problem with multicloud setups is the cost and complexity of making them work together. Many providers make it prohibitively expensive to move data out of their clouds. In such cases, multicloud setups are not truly multicloud, as people are unable to take advantage of what each cloud offers. This makes simplicity, support, documentation and an open platform important, particularly for startups.” – Yancey Spruill, DigitalOcean
- Balancing Cost And Carbon Optimization. “One challenge that comes with a multicloud strategy is trying to balance minimizing costs and carbon optimization. The pace of change and agility demands faster analysis of where to place a workload to minimize both the cost and the carbon footprint.” – Travis Greene, Micro Focus
- Supporting Both On-Premises And Cloud Applications. “We’re witnessing fragmentation across the data landscape in terms of technologies, vendors and use cases. Organizations can’t operate in silos anymore; we have to be ready to support applications that are hosted both on-premises and in the cloud. Only with common tools and approaches will we see the efficiency gains this offers, allowing us to improve productivity and spend more time creating value.” – Jakub Lamik, Redgate Software
- Auditing Infrastructure Security. “When data is scattered across multiple clouds, it is vulnerable to data breaches. As cloud providers constantly add new features to meet customer needs, IT teams must continuously audit and manage their infrastructure to ensure their cloud environments meet security requirements. Some best practices include strong encryption and automated monitoring tools to simplify the audit process.” – Parvinder Walia, ESET
- Coping With Increased Security Complexity. “While a multicloud strategy comes with many benefits in terms of the ability to use the best cloud service provider for the workload, technology and cost, it increases complexity in terms of security. Since each cloud platform is different, cloud defenders need to learn multiple technologies, and they often end up using separate security tools for each provider, complicating policy alignment and increasing workloads.” – Avi Shua, Orca Security
- Managing Machine Identities. “Managing machine identities is a significant challenge for multicloud environments. Modern workloads driven by DevOps, containerization or Internet of Things devices often require an extremely large number of machine identities in the form of digital certificates or keys. Without robust management, oversight and automation, outages, security problems or even breaches can occur.” – Ted Shorter, Keyfactor
- Optimizing For The Strengths Of Different CSPs. “Companies using multicloud strategies or delivering cloud-native technologies must be thoughtful in optimizing for the strengths of different cloud providers, seeking out the best models for data storage, GPU performance, tightest integration with end-user suites and, of course, support for security capabilities and tools. There are differences, and prioritizing usage based on need is critical.” – Devin Redmond, Theta Lake
- Overcoming Data Gravity. “Data gravity is the newest challenge. It can make moving data between cloud providers difficult, leading to delays and complexity in workload management. By building microservices with high availability in each cloud environment, businesses can optimize data processing and storage for each environment, reducing the need for data movement.” – Darren Person, Circana
- Codifying Infrastructure. “As cloud environments grow more complex, infrastructure as code becomes more and more important. Codifying your infrastructure means you can tear an environment down and spin the entire thing back up with the click of a button. By codifying your infrastructure now, you will position yourself well to manage workloads that span multiple cloud environments in a scalable and secure way.” – Tim Mitrovich, Artisan
- Managing Cognitive Load. “Cognitive load is becoming more of a challenge as the answer to every question continues to be “shift left.” Where will enterprises turn to find employees who can set up and secure networks while also writing code and managing deployed applications? Some estimates indicate that developers spend 20% of their time working on infrastructure rather than writing code that solves business problems.” – Rick Kilcoyne, CloudBolt Software