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Technology is set to transform the world even further in 2018 | Source: Pexels

Data veracity, citizen AI and other tech to transform businesses

TECHNOLOGY is here, now, and it’s changing the world around us faster than ever before. Whether it’s big data, artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, there’s disruption, chaos, and beauty, all at once.

C-suite executives, manager, and executives are trying to understand what the world will look like in the near future and how to tailor their business and strategies to keep ahead of the curve.

Accenture, through its new Technology Vision 2018 report, attempts to bring clarity and provide some direction to the industry.

Here’s what they have to say about the trends that are shaping life, society, and business:

Five technology trends to watch

Citizen AI, extended reality, data veracity, frictionless business, and the Internet of Thinking are five new technology trends that companies can leverage to build intelligent enterprises and create new opportunities for themselves.

Citizen AI

The consulting giant insists that AI is more than a program, that it’s becoming a citizen and must be ‘raised’ responsibly – calling it Citizen AI to make it more human-like.

The report found that 81 percent of executives believe that within the next two years, AI will work next to humans in their organizations, as a co-worker, collaborator and trusted advisor.

“As Artificial Intelligence expands further into society, the business accountability around raising a responsible and explainable AI will rapidly grow,” says the report.

Extended reality

Immersive experiences are changing how we connect with people and information, and thus, businesses must think about how to leverage AR, VR, and mixed reality to create this new “extended reality (XR)” to transform business and life.

As per the report, 80 percent of executives said they believe it will be important to leverage XR solutions to close the gap of physical distance when engaging with employees and customers.

“Extended reality is the first technology to ‘relocate’ people in time and space, and we are here for it. As immersive experiences spread across industries, the fundamental changes to enterprise and society are clear: the importance of place is disappearing,” says the report.

Data veracity

Data is the lifeblood of the intelligent enterprise. Whether you consider urban infrastructure, manufacturing, or healthcare, the global economy depends on live and accurate information to run.

Therefore, a vulnerability around unverified information is a serious concern for businesses and needs to be addressed. Confidence in the integrity of a company’s data and insights is critical to business.

Two insights that came out of the Accenture report that built the premise for data veracity are:

  • Seventy-nine percent of executives agree that organizations are basing their most critical systems and strategies on data, yet many have not invested in the capabilities to verify the truth within it, and yet
  • Eighty-two percent of executives reported that their organizations are increasingly using data to drive critical and automated decision-making, at an unprecedented scale.

“The time is now to bet big on advances in data-hungry technologies. Yet without an accompanying push for data veracity, these investments could easily become a losing bet,” says the report.

Frictionless business

Technology-driven partnerships help drive growth in today’s digital economy, however, legacy business systems weren’t built to support these tech-driven partnerships at scale.

“Staying competitive depends on building strong and plentiful partnerships, and creating a powerful digital ecosystem. As each company’s portfolio of partnerships grows, this scale of connections means reimagining the way the business transacts with others, and blockchain is a major key to creating, scaling, and managing those relationships,” says the report.

Obviously, internal transformations and adoption of new technologies are critical in order for companies to get the most out of these partnerships and stay in the game.

The Internet of Thinking

The Internet of Thinking is about creating intelligent distributed systems. And although our physical world is transforming into intelligent environments, existing IT architectures aren’t designed to support ‘intelligence everywhere’.

A balance of cloud and edge computing and a renewed focus on hardware will empower companies to build the Internet of Thinking. In fact, 83 percent of executives surveyed agreed that edge architecture will speed the maturity of many technologies.

At the end of the day, the report acknowledges that leading companies are working hard to improve the way we live. They’re creating innovative new products and services that will become indispensable in the future.

The report suggests that business is getting personal and that leaders must shift their mindsets and business models to focus on forging strong, trusted relationships with partners, customers, employees, governments, and more.

Accenture Chief Technology & Innovation Officer Paul Daugherty said:

There’s a new obligation— and a new opportunity— for companies to engage with people differently.

Accenture believes that business is getting personal and that leaders must shift their mindsets and business models to focus on forging strong, trusted relationships with partners, customers, employees, governments, and more. The more that businesses do to build technology into their processes and their ecosystem, the better it will be.