4,000 voices, three shifts, one story

IBMCAI_videostill_cloud_mobile_social_bigdata_as_natural_resource-AVATARWithin information technology, the period between innovation and obsolescence is increasingly shrinking, and a great deal can happen over the course of a single year. To help understand that gap and its impact to business, the IBM Center for Applied Insights engaged with 3,925 people through our 2014 studies.

We’ve come up with an organizing principle from those conversations: 4,000 voices, three shifts, one story. All the interviews, opinions and responses can be channeled into what IBM views as the three major areas constituting our industry’s horizon: data, engagement and cloud. Those three shifts form the backbone of IT in 2015 and beyond. And they’re inspiring one big story of business change, providing organizations with the chance to know more and move faster.

Data is no longer a static set of conventional variables. It’s a living, breathing, constantly changing representation of a company, made up of not just traditional structured data, but also streams of video, audio, tweets, social media posts and more, compiled, analyzed and updated for every tick of the clock. Generation D, our nickname for companies taking advantage of state-of-the art data and analytics capabilities, are speeding ahead of those slow to adapt. And increasingly such organizations are instituting a Chief Data Officer, the role responsible for orchestrating the waves of new and complex information.

Faster, more effective ways to understand and engage customers, partners, employees and other constituents remain an integral part of good business. Thus, companies must use robust social and mobile capabilities to pave the way for better client experiences and establish a means for heightened education and productivity.

The powers of data, mobile and social are incomplete if not available everywhere and in real time, possibilities that are realized on the cloud. Plus, the cloud offers opportunities to innovate and optimize that are unavailable through more traditional computing methods: companies using the cloud for infrastructure-, platform-, and software-as-a-service are outperforming their peers.

These new business tech trends require stronger protection and better risk management, though, which is why the Center also conducted its annual CISO Assessment to discover what issues are troubling today’s security leaders, and what precautions they’re taking in response. Among other trends, security leaders see a need for a higher level of collaboration and better command of the protean regulatory landscape.

But why read about these changes when you could watch a video about them?