Businesses are facing more changes than at any other point in history. Workplace innovations used to come in the occasional wave as a new method of communication, storage, or security emerged. Now, innovation is omnidirectional. The decision facing companies is to pursue routine innovation or watch their competitors accelerate past them. At the moment, these four disruptive innovations are shaping the business world and determining who makes it to the next stage of evolution.
Automating painstaking tasks and boosting productivity has been the focus of disruptive innovation from the start. At first, it was limited to industrial labor, but the sophistication of robotic processes makes it possible for white collar tasks. Now, just about every industry is helping their workforce reprioritize from routine tasks to activities that maximize their technical capabilities.
The New York Times is a great example of how to get creative with automation. Previously, their comment section was limited to 10% of their posts, ensuring their 14 moderators could screen out trollish and spam comments. Working with Alphabet Jigsaw, they used 16 million Times comments and the corresponding moderation decisions to teach the program. Verifiably good and bad comments are marked for bulk action and those that require human input are escalated. With their improved productivity, New York Times intend to expand comments to 80% of their web content by year’s end.
The potential across industries is incredible. Data entry gets automated as programs become sophisticated enough to recognize handwriting and translate it into text. Cybersecurity expands as robotic processes routinely check a much larger swath of an organization’s infrastructure. Skilled professionals everywhere will be freed up for more analytical and creative projects.
There is one catch. Organizations committed to that heightened productivity need to find and hire engineers or developers with comparable algorithm experience. With the high demand, that technical talent proves more difficulty to locate without assistance.
Predicting trends on a national or global scale was previously limited to human subject matter experts or data scientists. Now, real-time insight and sophisticated interpretation of raw data are achievable with the right program. Machine learning has gone from R&D daydream to necessary toolset. And top industries are jumping at the opportunity.
Take a look at the financial industry. Accurate predictions of investment and stock prices are now down to the millisecond and microsecond. Wall Street firms are transforming current financial prices, market conditions, and historical data into split-second sales. All of this is happening as cost-to-income ratios are improving by 28% and the global finance workforce sheds 230,000 jobs. Deal making, once dependent on that human touch, now thrives under the guidance of AI.
These types of advantages are universal. Businesses using machine learning make informed decisions faster, implement new strategies more effectively, and discover insight with far less effort. Hiring IT professionals with strong mathematical skills who understand machine learning’s strengths and weaknesses will maximize the potential of predictive analysis in your organization.
The office of the future is taking shape around us and it’s mind-bending. Augmented reality (AR) platforms are changing creativity, productivity, and employee training. Even processes as simple as email access and presentation creation will be transformed by the way AR builds upon intuitive processes.
The healthcare industry is a prime example. The University of Nebraska Medical Center invested $119 million in a next-generation facility that provides AR platforms for physicians and nurses to improve and retain core competencies that have the potential to save lives. The goal is to move beyond lecture based learning and cater to the different ways people learn and retain information. A combination of leading edge technology like immersive virtual environments and a 130-seat holographic auditory are giving healthcare professionals at UNMC unparalleled ongoing education.
Other industries are integrating augmented reality into their IT strategies. Remote guidance through AR devices promises to transform the way customers fix issues and learn to use products. Engineers will be able to interact with their own CAD designs and see how consumers will use them in the real world. And training applications aren’t limited to healthcare. Safety training can better convey the seriousness of a real-world situation without putting anyone at risk.
More applications and platforms are beginning to leverage AR capabilities, so the limited talent is stretched thin by growing demand. Even hiring contractors is a difficult prospect because Silicon Valley mainstays like Apple and Facebook’s Oculus are acquiring top talent. Finding the right person at the right rate requires businesses to monitor market trends and real-time availability of contractors. It’s demanding but the proactive work pays off.
Some disruptive technology is reshaping the market in undesirable ways. Over the last few years, ransomware went viral. In 2015, the SonicWall GRID Threat Network detected 3.2 million ransomware attack attempts. Just a year later, that number rose to 638 million. What changed? Most industry experts point to another disruptive trend: the technology-as-a-service model.
Cybercriminals no longer need to be technical innovators themselves. If the price is right, they are able to purchase ransomware-as-a-service, enabling them to hold any business hostage once they compromise the network. Companies worldwide have suffered from Spora ransomware, which any cybercriminal can use as long as 30% of the ransom goes to the developer.
Other ransomware attacks, like the notorious WannaCry, infected system vulnerabilities that had been uncovered and publicized online. In a short time, more than 200,000 PCs worldwide were infected, and entire businesses were brought to a standstill. Until the ransom was paid or cybersecurity professionals found a solution, all infected data was inaccessible.
Out of these growing attacks has emerged an even greater focus on cybersecurity. Hiring IT security professionals is crucial, but remains difficult with the current market demand. Though some companies are hiring a virtual CISO in the interim, this is only a stop gap measure until a more permanent person can be found.
Evolving with Disruption Innovation
In all instances, evolving with disruptive innovation requires the assistance of a team of experienced IT professionals. It’s their comprehension of the latest advances and IT strategies that determines whether an organization continues to move forward or lags behind the competition.
Want to stay ahead of the curve? Contact the Halo Group. We place IT experts with the world’s leading companies. To us, innovation is second nature.