Deloitte's 2023 Tech Trends report is here
Brad Milliken and Emad Tahtouh
Despite the increasing complexity of our interactions with computers, technology has become versatile, and more adaptable to our needs. We have moved into an immersive internet, where the metaverse and virtual reality are being explored, as we look for new ways to harness its potential, simplify processes, and increase efficiency. The goal is to make technology smarter and more accessible to enterprises, and create new business models.
The Deloitte Tech Trends Report outlines six major tech trends that have transformed new ways in which organisations can expand their business.
Trend #1 - Through the glass: immersive internet for the enterprise
The immersive internet is not just for gamers anymore. The rise of new technologies, and mainstream adoption of Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) make it possible to create more realistic and engaging experiences for consumers.
Innovative companies have the opportunity to reduce costs, enhance customer engagement, and pioneer entirely new offerings for a piece of the budding market. And while some will seek to grow new streams of revenue through mixed-reality experiences and engagement for consumers, others may focus on optimising operations through enterprise simulations and augmented workforce experiences.
Trend #2 - Opening up to AI: learning to trust our AI colleagues
The rise of big data and artificial intelligence (AI) is making it possible to collect and process vast amounts of data, and to gain insights that were previously impossible. While machine learning has advanced rapidly, the development of trust in machines has progressed at a slower pace.
As machines take on tasks that require human-like discernment and decision-making, the business world is having to develop a new understanding of how much workers and end users trust AI tools.
For some businesses, the functionality offered by emerging AI tools could be game-changing. But a lack of trust could ultimately derail these ambitions. People don’t embrace what they do not understand. Developing processes that leverage AI in transparent and explainable ways will be key to spurring adoption.
Trend #3 - Above the clouds: taming the multicloud chaos
Businesses are adopting multicloud strategies, which involve the use of several cloud environments and providers. While this approach can offer specialised capabilities and optimised pricing, it also comes with challenges.
Working with a mix of different platforms, services, and interfaces can make it complex to design and operate applications. This is mainly due to the complexity of working with heterogeneous platforms, services, and interfaces.
As a result, many struggle to fully realise the benefits of their cloud investments which can include the ability to quickly access and manage resources, easily scale up or down, share resources efficiently, and have a clear understanding of resource usage. Streamlining the multicloud chaos can be done through automation, or by using a single control panel to simplify the process. Say 'goodbye' to the chaos and to a much smoother operation.
Traditionally, organisations have been competing for a limited pool of skilled tech professionals. But this approach is not sustainable, because on average tech skills become obsolete every 2.5 years, making hiring for immediate needs a losing strategy.
To address the talent shortage, businesses need to expand their thinking and be flexible, where tech talent is nurtured and developed internally. By exploring different strategies, enterprises can broaden their talent pool, and create a compelling talent experience that attracts the best and brightest.
Trend #5 - In us we trust: decentralised architectures and ecosystems
In an age where confidence in institutions is waning, decentralisation and ‘trustless’ systems based on blockchain offer a promising solution to rebuild trust. Enterprises are entering a new phase with mainframe modernisation, connecting, and extending these systems into new technologies.
This presents an opportunity for organisations to cement their credibility with key stakeholders, by helping to reinvent a more decentralised and transparent internet. Web3 posits a future where no single entity can dominate the truth, as it is based on public blockchains, providing a reliable and unalterable record.
Disorganised business processes and systems can lower stakeholder trust. Whereas innovative organisations are building credibility by going beyond traditional business objectives like product quality, profit, and growth, to include environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues, as well as diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) commitments. Blockchain can also help bridge another credibility gap: digital trust.
Trend #6 - Connect and extend: mainframe modernisation hits its stride
Instead of completely replacing mainframe systems, businesses have begun looking for ways to extend the functionality by linking them to emerging technologies.
Mainframes often host critical applications that cannot be easily migrated to the cloud due to cost, or the risk of disrupting system dependencies. Instead of discarding legacy core systems, organisations are exploring innovative connectors to link them with new technologies, enabling each system to leverage its strengths. But there is a challenge in meeting user expectations for modern functionality.
Over 60% of businesses struggle with integrating legacy tools with new applications, and 57% report lack of business agility to respond to emerging business challenges, and opportunities. Organisations must carefully consider the costs, and benefits of moving applications from mainframes to the cloud. They should evaluate what business needs have changed and what opportunities exist in cloud versus mainframes to meet those needs.
In the past, technology was synonymous with information technology (IT). But now, a new set of technologies known as xTech have emerged. Rooted in the formal, natural, and social sciences, research areas are brimming with patent and startup activity, technology maturity and advancements, academic and grant investments, and venture capital funding. And they’re attracting the best and brightest talent.
The introduction of nano technologies, precision manufacturing robotics, and DNA modularity have fueled recent advancements and applications in biosensing, therapeutics, biofuels, pharmaceuticals, vaccines, synthetic food, pollutant-cleaning microbes, and biological data storage. These emerging technology disciplines have the potential to make a huge impact on business innovation, just as IT has in the past.
A version of this report first appeared on Deloitte Insights website.