Like most folks, I cannot predict the future. I can only relate the themes that most interest me. On that basis, here is what is occupying my mind as we go into 2015.
|The Lean Enterprise||The cultural and process transformations necessary to innovate and maintain agility in large enterprises – in technology, financial management, and risk, governance and compliance. Includes using real-option theory to manage risk.|
|Enterprise Modularity||The state-of-the-art technologies and techniques which enable agile, cost effective enterprise-scale integration and reuse of capabilities and services. Or SOA Mark II.|
|Continuous Delivery||The state-of-the-art technologies and techniques which brings together agile software delivery with operational considerations. Or DevOps Mark I.|
|Systems Theory & Systems Thinking||The ability to look at the whole as well as the parts of any dynamic system, and understand the consequences/impacts of decisions to the whole or those parts.|
|Machine Learning||Using business intelligence and advanced data semantics to dynamically improve automated or automatable processes.|
[Blockchain technologies are another key strategic theme which are covered in a separate blog, dappsinfintech.com.]
Why these particular topics?
Specifically, over the next few years, large organisations need to be able to
- Out-innovate smaller firms in their field of expertise, and
- Embrace and leverage external innovative solutions and services that serve to enhance a firm’s core product offerings.
And firms need to be able to do this while keeping a lid on overall costs, which means managing complexity (or ‘cleaning up’ as you go along, also known as keeping technical debt under control).
It is also interesting to note that for many startups, these themes are generally not an explicit concern, as they tend to be ‘obvious’ and therefore do not need additional management action to address them. However, small firms may fail to scale successfully if they do not explicitly recognise where they are doing these already, and so ensure they maintain focus on these capabilities as they grow.
Also, for many startups, their success may be predicated on larger organisations getting on top of these themes, as otherwise the startups may struggle to get large firms to adopt their innovations on a sustainable basis.
The next few blog posts will explain these themes in a bit more detail, with relevant references.