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Technology has drastically changed in the past decade, and it’s not slowing down. And if we can take anything away from 2020, it’s that planning for the future can be complex. That being said, 2020 and Covid-19 will catalyze the technology changes that will transform business in 2021.
According to Gartner, leveraging enterprise technology trends to gain organizational plasticity will be the key to achieving enterprise success as we jump into the new year and continue to adapt to the many challenges presented by the pandemic.
Outlined in this blog post are four of the top technology trends to prepare for in 2021.
1. Software as a Service (SaaS)
SaaS, or cloud-hosted technology, is the key to making the other trends we discuss in this post achievable. Cloud computing’s ascendance to the forefront of manufacturing enterprise technology is due to its countless benefits.
Manufacturers who utilize cloud-hosted technology have greater connectivity, meaning data is available on the go from any device, whenever organizations need it. Additionally, manufacturers can simplify enterprise software implementations if they host their software on the cloud rather than on-premises.
Further, cloud technology is much safer–on-site software requires heavy instruments in security and constant monitoring from the IT team, where cloud providers have the sophisticated technology and methodology to protect businesses from risks and downtime.
Cloud providers, like Microsoft Azure, provide countless benefits to manufacturers which is why it will continue to be a trend moving into 2021.
2. Total Experience
A trend Gartner predicts in 2021 is Total Experience. Total Experience ties together customer, user, and employee experience for multi-mode technological access. Covid-19 makes Total Experience relevant because businesses are experiencing more fractured communication and data access with employees working remotely. Thus, creating silos that delay productivity.
Organizations that integrate their enterprise software systems can achieve Total Experience. By integrating their business’s enterprise technology, manufacturers can have a cohesive, connected enterprise. Keeping systems separated results in information silos, gaps in processes, and limited visibility. Thus, the integration will maximize the performance and value of all the systems (i.e. ERP, CRM, eCommerce, cybersecurity framework, etc.), and enhance your competitive advantage. Gartner also predicts that organizations who achieve Total Experience will outperform their competitors over the next three years.
3. Artificial Intelligence
AI is likely one of the most influential tech trends that will continue gaining traction as we move into 2021. AI generates a mass of data that will continue to improve machine learning algorithms and processes. For manufacturers and distributors, AI can drastically improve the value of enterprise resources planning (ERP) technology. AI is making ERP software more intuitive and responsive than ever before. ERP vendors are increasingly embedding AI functionality into their software solutions, thus giving manufacturers and distributors cutting-edge tools that optimize their enterprise performance.
It is increasingly difficult for businesses to detect business performance patterns. AI and machine learning functionality can mine all your ERP data to pinpoint trends. With data insights at your fingertips, you can respond to issues faster and mitigate future risks.
Further, AI can improve a business’s user experience by accelerating and automating operations, so users can spend less time on manual tasks and more time on creating value-added opportunities for their organization. Plus, AI gives manufacturers real-time equipment performance metrics, and can even predict production floor anomalies, avoiding detrimental downtime.
4. Anywhere Operations
Another strategic trend predicted by Gartner is anywhere operations, which refers to a technology model that supports operations from any location. The need for this capability was always prevalent; however, the pandemic made it crucial. Employees who work from home still need access to the necessary data and information to successfully perform their job, making field service and mobile functionality a huge benefit to enterprises.
With the increased connectivity and other major advancements that come with the above advancements, also come more cybersecurity threats. In fact, Justice.gov reports that there are more than 4,000 ransomware attacks, on average, every day. And hackers frequently attack small businesses because they often lack the necessary tools and resources to fully protect themselves from cybersecurity threats.
By incorporating cybersecurity best practices and a cutting-edge framework, like EverSafe! Backup and Disaster Recovery, you can protect your business and your data to mitigate risks associated with enterprise technology, employee mishaps, hackers, ransomware, and other data disasters.
Businesses experienced a plethora of challenges in 2020, but implementing some of these enterprise technology trends can help you overcome some of these challenges. However, implementation is complex and can feel overwhelming. Datix can help! We are a one stop shop consultant, so we have a myriad of exciting software solutions. Plus, with 20 years of experience, we are experts! For more information, contact us today.