Gartner has outlined its top IT
predictions for 2015 and beyond, providing a detailed look into ongoing trends and how businesses
should adapt to the increasingly digital landscape.
Not only will mobile and social continue to grow in relevance, but
Internet of Things (IoT) technology will also surge significantly. IoT is the interaction
and communication between smart devices via embedded technology and online connection. And according to
Gartner, there will be 4.9 billion connected “things” in 2015 – rising to 25
billion “things” in use by 2020.
|Some may argue that the rapid invasion ofthese “things,” or smart objects, will have a negative effect on the workforce, as device-to-device interaction will eliminate several human occupations. However, as Gartner points out, smart
devices will not replace people. Humans will still be needed to oversee the devices, translate all the
digital data and implement it into real-world scenarios. In fact, Gartner believes digital business jobs
could see an increase of 500% by 2018.
With machines communicating among themselves and operating in much
greater number, businesses should benefit immensely. The ongoing shift to customer-centricity across
most industries will only be heightened as smart devices begin “simplifying, automating and
making more intelligent end-to-end processes, minimizing manual interventions and allowing the
consumer to self-serve.”
|All of this automation and increasedefficiency will assist owners and higher-level managers, greatly reducing cost of ownership for businessoperations. Gartner predicts that by 2018, smart machines and advanced industrialized services will
reduce cost of ownership for business expenses by 30%. And by 2015, there will be nearly 50
commercial vendors offering managed services that integrate smart devices.
The future will also see businesses intentionally becoming more unstable
to gain competitive advantage. Instability doesn’t exactly sound like a recipe for success, but
businesses will need to take a unique approach to remain ahead of the market. While more traditional
stable processes will still be influential, Gartner sees future digital models relying on “deliberately
unstable” business processes. Being “unstable” allows these models to easily
adapt to customer needs and dynamically readjust to the technological landscape at any given time
– “supermaneuverability,” as Garter describes it.
|With the rapid expansion of smart machines and IoT, the ongoing digital evolution is certainly something to keep an eye on in 2015and beyond. IoT will decrease costs, increase efficiency, create more digital jobs and allow businesses to
adapt more quickly to new trends in the customer space. While a completely sound digital ecosystem
won’t be seen for quite some time, the foundation is there. Businesses across many industries
that rely on IT will soon start to see dramatic changes in the way they operate.