The ever-changing technological landscape is transforming how businesses and professional services operate. From the days of filing cabinets, businesses have transformed with Internet, mobile and cloud technologies, bringing about an irreversible wave of change. As a result of this unstoppable disruption, the challenges are for businesses to adapt, and to equip the future workforce with the skills needed today, to thrive and survive in this brave new world.
Last month, I was delighted to attend an event organised by Professional Liverpool’s Creative, Digital & Technology Group. Held at the academic surroundings of the Liverpool Medical Institute, this event discussed how technology is changing how businesses and professional services operate. Chaired by Paul Furlong of Opus Media, this event featured three different speakers, including Mike Batters from NETprotocol, Jonathan Ford from Jonathan Ford & Co, and Roland Emmans from HSBC, who each gave their own unique perspective on how businesses are adapting to the changing digital environment.
Working in IT, I am keen to learn about new technologies, and to educate and remind myself continuously of the importance of adapting to change in my industry. What also interests me is how businesses, society and people can learn and adapt to the ever-changing technological landscape, and I saw this event as the ideal opportunity to gain an understanding, of the related challenges to be overcome. Suffice to say the quality of the speakers and what new insights I learned, exceeded my expectations.
Overall there was so much that I learned from Mike, Jonathan and Roland. Indeed, I learned that technology today, means offices have downsized and employees can work agile from any device using the Internet and cloud technologies, meaning businesses are more flexible, which helps to reduce costs. I was also able to understand that data can be processed faster, and can be accessed from multiple managed devices. Therefore, by using technologies such as 5G Internet, Cloud Computing, Big Data and the Internet of Things, this unstoppable disruption brings new possibilities.
Whilst technology brings these opportunities for businesses, it also brings several concerns and considerations to be addressed. These relate to security and adapting technology to meet the needs of businesses, employees and clients, which include the following examples below:
- Businesses still need to hit performance and productivity targets.
- Data is the new oil, meaning skills such as data analysis will be important!
- There is no one-size fits all solution.
- Important to have user security awareness, education and reminders.
- Businesses will still need to manage infrastructure, activity and security on a global scale.
- IT and personal skills need to be stronger than ever, meaning businesses will need to consistently train their employees, so they have the skills required for the future.
- Changing technology is easy, but most fail due to not keeping business processes updated.
- People will still need to be supported to handle these new technologies.
These have all given me plenty to think about how technology has changed how businesses and organisations operate today. This is because businesses and employees need to evolve, by learning and reinventing themselves, in order to meet the demands of the future. As industries constantly change and utilise new technologies, including Cloud Computing, Big Data, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, these all bring both opportunities and challenges to be considered and addressed in equal measure. What this means in simple terms, is that new skills will need to be learned and developed.
Overall, I was extremely satisfied with the event, the networking opportunities, and the content delivered by the speakers. I was impressed with their technical knowledge, experiences, and importantly their ability to put their individual points across with clarity and understanding. Therefore, I went away having gained a significant and brief glimpse into how technology is changing our society, meaning it is crucial to learn continuously and adjust, or risk falling behind the competition. For all businesses, professional services and organisations, failure to adapt to technological and industry changes is simply not an option they can afford to take!
To conclude, I would like to thank Mike, Jonathan and Roland for their contributions. My thanks also go to Alex Clark, Rory Caine and Ciara Hutchison at Professional Liverpool, for organising an interesting and knowledgeable event, and in my opinion a very important one, of which I shall leave you with these important words.
The jobs of the future are here today!