3 Strategic Technology Trends in 2024

The Top 3 Strategic Technology Trends in 2024.

Using Strategic Technology to Generate True Value

You’ve probably already invested in certain innovative technologies already. Others are new, but have helped create the infrastructure, governance, and tools that your organization uses every day. If done correctly, strategic technology can deliver benefits like confidence in safely using AI, sustainable activities within operated ecosystems, greater speed and productivity, and greater value both internally and externally.

For many businesses, value is the true bottom line. A streamlined budget helps move certain goals forward, so introducing innovations creates new opportunities for growth and value. However, there are three different ways, as outlined by Gartner, to define value gained through strategic decisions.

Protect Your Investment

Past, present, and future strategic technology decisions bring unique benefits along with their own problems. Highlighting what made these investments work in the past, applying that knowledge to current decisions, and using these changes to improve future investments is the best way to make them last and generate greater value.

Make sure you’re deliberate. With how fast AI evolves, you don’t have time for directionless experimentation. When you are calculating perceived ROI, make sure to add your investment in protective measures into the mix. These can cause enough variance to your budget to have a tangible impact. Finally, tailor developments with distribution in mind while securing your rights.

Enable Your Builders

Empower your developers and creators to build solutions using the technology that brings them the greatest benefit. Your builders are the ones that create value for the company, so investing in their success is investing in the success of everyone.

Use technology that benefits you and your specialists. One size fits all works in some cases, but sometimes a more specialized product would do the job better and create less friction, while in some cases the opposite is true. Listen to their needs and react as needed. Develop a roadmap that allows for nonspecialists to create too. Good ideas can come from the most unlikely places. Work closely with stakeholders to determine scope and capability so realistic growth can be achieved without roadblocks along the way.

Deliver Value

Commit to a cycle of refining and accelerating value optimization while maintaining operational excellence. Constant improvement is an easy way to create added value while also improving on services and gaining greater productivity.

Make continuous adjustments to meet demands. This is called a virtuous cycle as it benefits internal needs and external customer demands, so is seen as a positive element on two fronts. Include approaches for algorithm-based customers and your internal staff. Anyone, no matter where they come from, should be accounted for in your value delivery. Facilitate controlled access to quickly changing digital tools so shifts in trends, the industry, or your needs can be accounted for quickly without a drop in quality.

If these elements aren’t already on your IT roadmap, you may want to take a second pass at it. Each of the following trends fits in one of these three pillars, helping you determine which is the best fit for your company based on what is provided.

#1 - AI Trust, Risk, and Security Management

AI Trust, Risk, and Security Management

Also known as AI TRiSM, this trend encompasses the support of AI model governance, trustworthiness, fairness, reliability, robustness, transparency, and data protection. As AI advances, new controls, rules, and governance must be put in place to ensure steady growth without compromising business integrity.

Gartner predicts that by 2026, enterprises that apply TRiSM controls to their AI applications will increase decision-making accuracy by eliminating up to 80% of faulty and illegitimate information. This trend is on the rise because businesses that use AI TRiSM controls can move more of their AI projects to the production stage, gain greater value from these projects, and have improved consistency over those that don’t.

Managing your AI model with TRiSM can enhance bias controls in decisions while increasing fairness in AI-driven applications. AI is more streamlined and easier to tune when working under robust guidelines. AI model explainability must constantly be tested through model monitoring. This ensures that all interpretations and explanations of an AI model are active during operations and easily understood.

Setting up a dedicated unit to manage your TRiSM efforts will pay off exponentially in the future as any issues are mitigated before they have a lasting impact. Make sure to use the best tools for the job across your business and ensure everything being used is essential and analyzed thoroughly. Finally, define acceptable policies and establish a system to record and approve access to AI models and the attestations of actual users.

#2 - Platform Engineering

Platform Engineering

Platform engineering is the discipline of building and operating self-service internal platforms. This process includes checking if each platform is a layer, created and maintained by a dedicated product team, designed to support the needs of its users by interfacing with tools and processes.

Gartner believes that by 2026, 80% of software engineering organizations will establish platform teams that will act as internal providers of reusable services, components, and tools for application delivery. The speed of production will increase as a result, giving businesses a way to streamline internal processes and provide stopgaps for issues quickly.

This practice is on the rise because it optimizes the developer experience and accelerates delivery of business value. By reducing the cognitive load for developers through productivity improvements, developers can move projects along faster and more efficiently. Developers’ abilities to independently run, manage, and develop their applications is significantly improved, while ensuring reliability and security. Alongside this, key talent retention improves as senior developers now have access to more tools to support their efforts on high-level projects and training materials to bring others up to speed.

To integrate platform engineering into your process, start by curating and building internal platforms with reusable, composable, configurable platform components, knowledge, and services. Treat your platform as a product. Work with your end users to find new capabilities and processes that are useful to them and their experience, then build a platform around that. Cultivate a product management culture that offers routine collaboration between platform engineers and end users, so both receive each other’s feedback and act on it accordingly.

#3 - Augmented Connected Workforce

Augmented Connected Workforce

This strategy revolves around optimizing the value delivered by human staff by establishing a connective tissue that optimizes the use of intelligent technology, workforce analytics, and skill augmentation to speed up and scale your talent. Gartner predicts that through 2027, 25% of CIOs will be using augmented connected workforce initiatives to reduce time to competency by 50% for key roles.

This trend is on the rise because it offers a strategy to help accelerate new digital skills across all job types. Training is more streamlined and easier to understand. It provides the opportunity for digital tools like AI to reduce the time it takes to train new hires up to a competent level in their new field. Smarter work is made possible through advancements in workplace automation and AI, simplifying complex issues and giving you more time to focus on larger goals.

Starting your own augmented connected workforce will require you to prioritize time to competency for inexperienced workers in complex environments. Typically, training in these fields is scarce and it is assumed that new hires will pick up the skills needed before being hired or while they go through the motions. This way, onboarding is quicker, and a wider hiring pool can be accessed.

Create cross-functional programs that use leaders from IT, HR, sales, customer service, and supply chain. Then, as a group, decide which workforce segments to prioritize investments in. Design employee experiences around intelligent technology to add new growth opportunities. Create insights and guided recommendations that help employees accomplish what would otherwise be impossible.

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