The Rise of AI
2018 will see Artificial Intelligence (AI) drive a transformational change among organizations and impact on cloud use.
ICT isn’t getting any simpler, and businesses are being forced to move faster as their customers’ requirements become more demanding. This is driving innovation in areas like AI, but automation of past processes won’t be enough to keep up with the “need for speed” in business agility.
We will see lots more AI projects and initiatives in 2018; it will be the cornerstone of change in automation of ICT. Proactive, automated, non-human decisions are now a necessity. Are the robots coming? Yes, they are – but we still need to develop the Intellectual Property (IP) to drive them.
IP Will Be Key
With emerging technologies like AI becoming more prominent in 2018, organizations are demanding bespoke software and solutions that solve their specific business problems.
As a result, companies are increasingly working with cloud service providers to gain a competitive advantage – this includes using public cloud providers to power their IP-centric solutions. Investment in infrastructure development is diminishing, replaced by a need for specific business-driven solutions that require unique software to bring these solutions to life.
From Partnering to Strategic Alliances
IP is the key, but many end users don’t have the time, resources or in-house skills to create their own unique solution that gives them the business advantage they require.
As such, they are forging long-term business relationships with technology service providers who understand their need for change, and develop specific IP or software which utilizes public cloud services, embraces AI, and most importantly which solves a business or specific customer problem.
Public cloud providers also need these strategic partner alliances to ensure there is a shorter time to value in moving workloads to the cloud, and providing solutions that move beyond IaaS (Infrastructure-as-a-Service) to fully utilizing PaaS (Platform-as-a-Service).
PaaS as the Basis for Digital Transformation
We are starting to see the SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) players now extending into PaaS in response to customer demand.
Customers that are using a SaaS kingpin like CRM want to extend that platform into other use cases and requirements. It’s been a long time coming but as the world moves to a cloud-first strategy, the complexity in integrated public clouds is driving companies to explore PaaS.
Secure Cloud Services & Cyber Security get Board Visibility
Cloud services have been a safe bet in the Boardroom in recent years, but now the question is, are they truly secure? Decisions to utilize cloud services have been a relatively easy Boardroom decision, due to their known cost and agility. But with more and more high-profile data breaches, questions are now being asked around cloud security at a Board level within businesses.
The damaging nature of cyber-attacks is now clearly in the line of sight of Board members. GDPR will also raise more questions at this level, making cybersecurity in the cloud a Board level priority.
Recommended Read: Tech vs. Touch: 4 Marketing Trends to Watch in 2018