Business Scoop

Five Technology Trends That Will Define Kiwi Businesses

Press Release – Accenture

As companies reinvent themselves for pandemic life, the boldest, most visionary leaders those who use technology to master change will define the future. Thats according to global consultancy, Accenture, which has predicted the key …

As companies reinvent themselves for pandemic life, the boldest, most visionary leaders – those who use technology to master change – will define the future. That’s according to global consultancy, Accenture, which has predicted the key technology trends that will shape businesses and industries over the next three years.

The report, Leaders Wanted: Masters of Change at a Moment of Truth, outlines how leading global companies are preparing for the post-pandemic world through digitally transforming their business.

Accenture’s Head of Technology for New Zealand, Nick Mulcahy, said the pandemic has exposed the limitations of how many businesses had been operating. The result is a wave of companies racing to reinvent themselves and use technology innovations to shape the new realities they face.

“Most businesses, across every industry, have started to reinvent themselves through adopting new employee and customer engagement tools, remote working, and the re-engineering of supply chains.

“The pandemic pushed a giant fast forward button to the future as businesses pivoted faster than many had previously thought was possible. A decade’s worth of digital transformation has in effect been compressed into the next two or three years.

“The experience globally is that Kiwi businesses shouldn’t wait passively for these changes to be forced upon them. Instead, we recommend they become masters of their change by adhering to three key imperatives.

“First, leadership demands technology leadership and tomorrow’s leaders will be those that put technology at the forefront of their business strategy.

“Second, leaders won’t wait for a new normal, they’ll reinvent, building new realities using radically different mindsets and models.

“Finally, leaders will embrace a broader responsibility as global citizens, deliberately designing and applying technology to create positive impacts far beyond the enterprise to create a more sustainable and inclusive world.

“The mode and operation of businesses in most other countries has likely changed forever. As restrictions begin to ease around the world, New Zealand firms should similarly consider how these major shifts in business landscape can be adopted for their business models.”

The Accenture report identified five global trends that companies will need to address over the next three years to accelerate and master change in all parts of their business:

1 Stack Strategically: Architecting a Better Future – A new era of industry competition is dawning – one where companies compete on their IT systems architecture.

Ballance Agri Nutrients became the first organisation in New Zealand to convert its digital core to SAP S/4HANA, improving the stability of its IT systems and laying the foundations for future innovation and business growth. With S/4HANA Finance, Ballance set the vision for the industry by executing the next phase in its long-term digital strategy, deploying SAP Commerce in the build of its e-commerce solution ‘MyBallance: Your farms at your fingertips’. For Ballance, intelligent stacking has enabled the design and build of more intuitive and robust solutions, greater business efficiencies and greater customer centricity

2. Mirrored World: The Power of Massive, Intelligent, Digital Twins Leaders are building intelligent digital twins to create living models of factories, supply chains, product lifecycles, and more.

The Department of Conservation is optimising their digital twin of Aotearoa’s natural environment using intelligent emerging technologies such as machine learning. Digital replicas of local waterways, national parks, species, and vegetation enable a more comprehensive representation of New Zealand’s natural assets and helps the Department of Conservation make more informed management, monitoring and preservation decisions. 

3. I, Technologist: The Democratisation of Technology – Powerful capabilities are now available to people across business functions, adding a grassroots layer to enterprises’ innovation strategies.

Low code development software enables businesses to harness powerful technology without requiring highly skilled people for implementation. Optimation has partnered with low-code platform OutSystems to improve efficiency of development of business applications to their customers. This means their employees with functional rather than highly technical skills can use “drag and drop” type methods to innovate and create solutions, eliminating the need for complex development. This strategy enables Optimation to deliver solutions at a faster pace and lower cost.

4. Anywhere, Everywhere: Bring Your Own Environment – The single biggest workforce shift in living memory has positioned businesses to expand the boundaries of the enterprise.

Remote working has reaped huge benefits, though it has also imposed many challenges. The increasing number of employees working from home has been shown to result in frustration, isolation, and loneliness. Auckland start-up, Remotely, has launched an innovative online experience to simulate a meeting space. The online platform offers personalised avatars and audio to simulate real-life situations, encouraging natural communication methods and shared experience for team members. The meeting rooms simulate 3D environments and use interactive gaming tools to help workers feel more at ease and engaged while communicating.

5. From Me to We: A Multiparty System’s Path Through Chaos The demand for contact tracing, frictionless payments, and new ways of building trust brought into sharp focus what had been left undone with enterprises’ existing ecosystems.

One of the biggest changes for New Zealand businesses during the beginning of the pandemic was the rapid adoption of digital technologies. Admin Army, a cloud-based business support service, helps small businesses outsource their business administration activities to virtual assistants for seamless communication between different parties and the business. It means staff can focus on more important tasks and hiring could be focused on specialist skills, rather than generalist administrators, giving a high level of expertise across the business. Through their partnerships, such as Xero for accounting services and Dropbox for data storage, Admin Army can connect various cloud software solutions to deliver an effective service to its clients.

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