IT trends in 2016 – Apollogic experts’ opinions!
Take a look at the most important trends in IT in 2016 discussed by our specialists. Let me tell you that every one of our experts tried to describe relevant trends from the point of view of their area of specialization. Therefore, in the text will find information which go beyond keywords, such as User Experience, Big Data and the Internet of Things. Before you there is quite an extensive and very interesting guide to the most important trends in IT – check it out!
Jacek Rosik, Big Data Team Leader at Apollogic
In the IT world in the nearest future, NoSQL technologies will become more and more important. In the Big Data area, we will also notice an increase in Apache Spark usage to process data. That, in connection with the increasing number of projects using the Hadoop platform, will also popularise the SAP HANA Vora technology. Parallel to the Big Data development we are going to observe a continuation of the “third wave of the Internet” – this is the name coned to depict the boom in the Internet of Things (IoT). In this domain, more and more new, simpler and cheaper devices and sensors are designed, so that the tools of the Internet of Things may be better available. What follows is the emergence of the next Internet of Things networks (such as The Things Network) and platforms to manage the devices, so that every ordinary human being can use them. As a result new, competing start-ups will soon begin to emerge in each of those areas.
Szymon Mydlarz, Apsello™ Product Manager
The path to be used by manufacturers of client relationship management tools and automation of sales will be … even bigger automation of the processes. What do I mean by that? Nowadays, client services require aggregating huge amounts of data from customers, with the data originating from a great number of the so-called customer points of contact (omnichannel). A point of contact may be, for example, a purchase in a traditional outlet, an auction portal or website visit, contacting customer services via a chat line or, social media … there is a long list to be continued. In order to control such a huge amount of information and use it in practice, companies will be forced to automate their activities (they will have to react in real-time to the client’s activities), stressing the personalisation of the message. In order to build a positive purchase experience, companies will have to introduce unified methods of customer services in each of the are above-mentioned channels, merge departments within the company so that they may cooperate, and not skirmish for results within their small areas of activities.
As to the sales departments, they will have two review their best practices and use the knowledge of sales reps and specialists. Unification of processes on the one hand, and on the other hand a need to offer solutions geared towards individual customers requires a skill of managing a number of sales cycles. Here at Apollogic, we follow all the above-mentioned trends and use them working on products dedicated to sales departments.
Olga Langowska, ERP Consultant at Apollogic
ERP is an area least sensitive to novelties, nevertheless here as well trends and changes connected with technological development do appear. ERP systems currently use solutions in the cloud, and this is why they are also available to smaller organisations due to lower maintenance costs. This type of technology is also used by industries, such as medical or automotive, which until now have not been using such advanced technologies. It also provides new possibilities while creating dedicated solutions. This flexibility makes it possible to use applications on mobile devices, utilising data from the system and presenting them on a smartphone display or a tablet screen in a synthetic and user-friendly way.
One example may be the 360° Customer View application which provides support both for sales and financial departments. To this end, it can use the data from SAP on-premise, extended by information from the Internet and Social Media.
Placing the ERP system in the cloud is part of a trend to outsource services. It means not only reducing technology maintenance costs but also popularisers employing specialists found outside the organisation for the need of a specific project. Employing full time specialists and their continuous training is costly and often unnecessary. There is a niche there for companies offering access to specialists who work only during the designated time.
A direction in which SAP is going is worth mentioning, namely innovative data storage solutions and computing capacity of the HANA technology – it is a new quality which will find its use in the ERP module. Initially, it was used in the financial module. It is a tool which will, on the one hand, boost the work of accountants (faster closure of the accounting period) and, on the other hand, provide reliable and current data for reporting and controlling purposes. SAP is planning innovations for HR modules, logistics and sales modules.
Krzysztof Góralski, Java Developer at Apollogic
The microservices architecture using REST API continues to be on top of all the web applications. It is also the area where DevOps departments can boast their skills because they already have a number of available tools, though the tools have not yet matured. The fact is, nevertheless, that microservices architecture does not exist without people trained in DevOps. It is easy to notice when the number of microservices in the project begins to grow.
Another trend is Reactive Programming. One could probably start a long discussion whether or not it is indeed something new, or perhaps an old concept packaged in a new catchy name. Nevertheless, we could recently observe an increasing popularity of such libraries as RxJava Akka or RxJS. It is said that RxJava is slowly becoming a standard for mobile applications
It is worth noticing that functional languages are beginning to enter the mainstream – purely functional languages might not make it but those which support a number of paradigms will. They offer programmers more and different possibilities of solving problems. Due to such features as ‘immutability’, they will fit into multithreaded applications or the above mentioned Reactive Programming.
Machine Learning is another interesting trend and although it is still a toddler (in Poland), it is an interesting domain. It transpires that programmers now have a number of advanced tools in hand, such as Amazon Machine Learning, Google Prediction API, TensorFlow, and so on. It does not mean, though, that their use is going to be simple because it will most probably require a lot of well-prepared data and extended knowledge of Data Science.
Lucjan Łajło, SAP CRM Consultant at Apollogic
In case of CRM systems, the talk is now about on the phenomenon of omnichannel. This is why it seems important to deliver software integrating off-line and online sales channels. Another CRM tendency is the so-called Customer Journey Map, in other words, a tool which helps create sales and marketing strategies based on the past activities of the client. What it requires is not only a detailed analysis of products bought to date by the client, but also the client’s habits and purchasing tendencies. This is why the client is offered products well-suited for him or her, which positively influences the company’s revenue and the customer loyalty.
One of the most important trends in CRM are mobile technologies. Currently, clients want to be able to take business decisions in real time, regardless the place and time they have found themselves in. The clients also appreciate simplicity and intuitive character of mobile applications, this is why SAP Fiori applications are becoming more and more popular. Thanks to a personalised and responsive interface, they ensure comfortable and pleasant work.
What is certainly important is integrating CRM systems with the social media. The role of some media as a direct link between the company and the client is indisputable, similarly – social media are an important source of data reflecting real needs of the client. Social CRM importance has been growing. The main source of data here are conversations carried out via the social media.
Among CRM tendencies, solutions in the cloud are becoming more and more popular and, consequently, the popularity of SaaS is growing. In the SaaS model, where applications are made available on the supplier server platform, neither installation of the customer’s computer is required, nor it is required to buy a licence. Thanks to this approach the costs of installation, use and maintenance are reduced. Moreover, expenses are spread over time.
Sebastian Maćkowiak, SAP SRM Consultant at Apollogic
Intelligent procurement is moving from an emphasis on cost savings in favor of creating new business value and enabling supplier innovations.
As the so-called digital enterprise adapts to a world of increased collaboration, data access, and business networks, procurement leaders can have a much bigger impact, both inside and outside of their companies. Virtual enterprises don’t own the infrastructure anymore – they deal in relationships and knowledge rather than inventory and physical goods. And when business models are changing, procurement also needs to change.
One of the trends that will have the greatest impact on the way procurement performs are predictive analytics and forecasting tools.
You’ll want to predict what’s going to happen in terms of budgets, based on what we expect to happen in economies and supply markets. By analyzing all of the available big data in supply networks and beyond, you’ll be able to choose the right time to make a purchase decision or go to the market. This way procurement category managers will be perceived as an added value, thus becoming trusted advisors.
Procurement is also having an increased impact on risk reduction. Elevating the use of data analysis and increased innovation between suppliers and consumers, we’re getting deeper insight into the supply chains and could potentially prevent a variety of risks. Be it security related, supply chain health and functioning, or even unknown factors that could potentially damage the company’s reputation. Access to better information aids in understanding where those risks are, quickly responding and in the end, hopefully mitigating those risks.
Łukasz Kaczyński, SAP BO Consultant at Apollogic
The New Year has just started and, as usual, we try to envisage what it may bring. Let’s see what the expectations towards Business Intelligence in the coming year are going to be. One of the forecasts says that the trend in using BI is going to be much stronger accentuated. Interfaces and applications are going to be created solely in order to analyse data for the masses. This phenomenon will grow parallel with the evolution of self-service version of analytics.
According to other forecasts, another trend which is to be seen this year already – namely more advanced and better developed options of visualisation and presentation – is going to grow stronger. Tables with rows of data are going to be replaced by visualisations with impressive graphics. The form in which this trend is going to surface is applications rooted in search engines, and data will also be available on displays of mobile devices.
The Internet of things is going to develop even further in the coming year. More and more will be equipped with sensors transforming information used in a variety of ways. The recent CES exhibition has proved that this is where the future is. From cars to refrigerators: all devices will generate information which may be used and analysed.
We will see Big Data potential growing stronger. As Big Data matures, the availability of compressed intellectual property will be much better, and data analysts will play a lot more serious, key roles. This technology has very good perspectives, and the coming year will be probably crucial for Big Data.
As the BI market develops, it is possible that companies offering this kind of service may become involved in much more aggressive campaigns in order to win new clients. It is quite probable that prices of BI solutions will drop because a larger number of companies will be interested in sharing this attractive cake. This, in turn, will not only increase pressure on possible price changes, but may bring BI fresh, innovative concepts.
If you envisage other trends in IT for 2016, share your ideas in the coments!
- On 27/01/2016