Four megatrends shaping societal evolution are rapid urbanisation, shifting demographics, hyper-globalisation and accelerated innovation.
The United Nations expects that by mid-century close to 70 per cent of the world’s population will live in cities and by 2030 more than 1.4 billion people could be aged over 60. Within eight years, there will be ten times more data generated worldwide, according to IDC.
Many businesses are focused on digital transformation and improving processes to step up how they predict and serve customer needs. They are counting on the cloud to help them achieve this, already confident of its flexible and affordable benefits in their organisation.
But that achievement is still threatened by lingering, information-based challenges. In 2018, organisations want to dig more deeply into their information to improve their decision-making, but they still struggle with data silos, so they have a wealth of information trapped within departments.
The National Health Service faces the severe counter forces of a quickly growing and ageing population, and tightly restricted funds for treatment. Trusts across the country are subsequently going through extensive change to meet efficiency targets and evolve the NHS into an organisation that prevents ill-health rather than reactively treats diseases.
During this time, there is a strong push to improve care from GP surgeries to hospitals and community facilities. “A key element of health organisations’ success is supplying clinical and administrative staff with the right information at the right time, enabled by technology,” explains Shane Tickell, chief executive at technology firm IMS MAXIMS.
A banking revolution is coming in January. “Open banking” will allow customers to share their financial data between banks, allowing the creation of new types of smart banking services. Big banks initially thought they would lose customers to start-ups better able to adapt to the new age - but increasingly they see it as a unique digital opportunity.
HSBC is positioning itself at the forefront of the change. In October, it announced a move into open banking with HSBC Beta, a trial that will allow 10,000 UK customers to see accounts from different banks on a single screen, before a broader rollout.
This year is a critical time for sales managers and their teams, and several key factors are combining to make it so. New use of data, personalisation and scientific skillsets are playing an increasingly important role; in a few years’ time selling may even be more about science than art.
In the near future, there will be significant change, starting with sales reps being automatically monitored and having their activities analysed.
Driverless cars, transport as a service, high-speed rail, supersonic flight and passenger drones. The list of travel innovations goes on. Governments are loosening the law to turn their countries into research hubs, and transport and technology companies are pouring billions into development.
In such circumstances, change is bound to be rapid. But there are serious questions over whether consumers want all this technology.
Direct Line Group wants to help bridge the gap between manufacturers and the insurance industry. How will it do this?
- We are engaging in crucial dialogue with manufacturers to help understand the risk impact of automation and ultimately autonomous cars. These vehicles present insurers with a challenge and an opportunity.
Technology is already helping improve safety and the driving experience, and the value for us is understanding how such cars change the traditional motor risks and liabilities we underwrite. In the long term, with more sophisticated driving technology, humans will effectively be co-driving with robots, and the challenge is unpicking where responsibility and liability lie in any given incident.
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