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Technology: How will we do business 10 years from now?

By Dick Weisinger

10 years is a long time for technology.  Things change quickly — something that used to be called “running on Internet Time”.  In 2000 AIIM had just coined the term ECM for Enterprise Content Management.  2000 was the same year that Google sold their first on-line ad.  Back then, Social Media didn’t exist.  There were no Wii’s or iPods.  The first YouTube video was uploaded just five years ago.  FaceBook started only six years ago and Twitter started only four years ago.

Making a prediction about what technology will be like 10 years from now isn’t an easy thing to do, but Gartner recently gave it a shot and made ten predictions about how technology will shape the world of business ten years from now.

Less Routine Work Companies will continue to automate any part of their processes that can be automated.  The tasks that can’t or aren’t easily automated will  make up the majority of jobs for the workers of the future.

Work Swarms There will be fewer sole contributors and more team-driven efforts.  Today’s social and collaborative tools are forming the basis for this trend.

Weak Links There will be ever more collaboration, sometimes with people you know well and often with people that you don’t.  Being able to seek out and get help from weak links in your social network will become more important.

The Collective Groups of people that can affect and influence your company both from within and without exist.  They are held together by a common attitude, interests, ideas or way of thinking.  Knowing how to influence collective groups will be vital to the success of your company.

Work Sketchups While workers will be involved in non-routine work, there will still be common patterns involved in the tasks that they work on.  Gradually those patterns will be identifiable as sketch-ups that can begin to model what a worker does.

Spontaneous Work Workers will have less hierarchy in their workplace and be more proactive and more flexible in the tasks that they take on.

Simulation and Experimentation Spreadsheet what-if’s will be taken to the next level.  With massive data sets, workers will be able to simulate and parameterize their company within a virtual environment, helping them to make better decisions.

Pattern Sensitivity Workers will be more sensitive to changes in their environment.  Change happens quickly and the organization needs to be able to respond in a timely way to ensure the viability of their company.

Hyperconnectivity Workers will have more relationships both within and outside the organization.  As a result, there will be a tendency for work, both formally and informally, to move along  those connections.

My Place The workplace will become more virtual and the boundaries between work and home time will continue to blur.

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