03 Jul 2018

Improving your SuperOffice CRM system with bespoke development

SuperOffice is a powerful scalable CRM database system designed for organisations that operate in the business to business market sectors. Our professional development team at Synergy Technology provides additional bespoke development work to ensure that SuperOffice users maximise the functionality and effectiveness of their CRM system. Trevor and Richard two of our talented team of developers, outline the features and benefits of bespoke development.

What is the reason for requiring bespoke development?

“Bespoke development for SuperOffice can cover almost any operational enhancement that a business requires to really make the most of their customer relationship management system. We help our clients extend and customise SuperOffice so that they can achieve the maximum efficiency from the system in their daily routine, which then becomes richer with information and delivers better results.

“We can practically program anything necessary into SuperOffice to enhance the sales, marketing and customer service functionalities of a business.”
Trevor, Head of Development, Synergy Technology.

Every industry, every business and every process has different and sometimes very specific requirements. SuperOffice out of the box can not to meet all these complex requirements. If it did, it would be very expensive, difficult to update and deliver across a wide range of platforms, and would end up including modules and functionality that would not be utilised by the majority of SuperOffice users.

SuperOffice consolidates the key contact functionality of a business based on its Sales, Service Delivery, Marketing and Customer Processes. Bespoke development is designed to make SuperOffice a perfect 100% fit to each and every client’s specific needs.

It has been designed to support client specific business functions and can be tailored by developers to suit a wide range of requirements. Development work can cover anything from integration between CRM operations and third party add-ons or modules, as well as developing sophisticated reporting systems that combines data from several systems linked to SuperOffice.”

What sort of development work do you do?

We can create a wide range of processes and functions that enhances the effectiveness of SuperOffice and its application, this includes:

  • Create web pages that can carry out functions connected to SuperOffice.
  • Converting documents within SuperOffice to PDF.
  • Additional telesales processes.
  • Creating sophisticated sales operations.
  • Call scripts, call logging and related reporting.
  • Additional marketing activities.
  • Automating repetitive tasks, consolidating information.
  • Integrating systems or data from other systems to streamline internal processes.
  • Full end to end marketing integration.

 

Synergy Technology can devise a bespoke solution for almost any requirement for additional functionality in SuperOffice.

Development work can eliminate repetitive time consuming manual data processes with automated functions that equally reduces the risk of duplication of data and improves data accuracy. Richard, SuperOffice Developer, Synergy Technology

Examples of SuperOffice development that Synergy Technology has produced for clients include:

  • Package integration with financial packages including SAGE50, Pegasus Opera, Dynamics NAV, Access Dimensions, SAP integration and Xero.
  • Integration with email marketing systems including eMarketeer and CommuniGator.
  • Integration with systems such as INKWRX to convert existing business forms and documents allowing paperwork to be completed using a mobile phone, tablet or digital pen.
  • Tailoring functionality.
  • Developing modules to quickly lookup postcodes and business information online.
  • Tailoring reports and documentation to reflect the company standards.
  • Even something as specific as adopting the system to work with deep sea exploration and offshore windfarms for monitoring profit cost control and access control.

 

What are the real benefits of bespoke work for SuperOffice users?

Basically bespoke development within SuperOffice ensures that it works seamlessly and effectively across financial, sales, marketing and customer service activities and consolidates any system functions that share the same data or reporting.

Other bespoke work is adding functionality to the existing system, or maximising the value of the data within in the system by creating informative, up-to-date reporting. Developing bespoke work usually involves incorporating SuperOffice into existing third party systems or with a new system that the client wants to start using. The key is understanding what the client is looking to achieve from their CRM system.

“Listening to our clients, understanding their needs, and determining the best most cost effective solution is our priority. To find the best solution we always seek to offer the most effective and perfect fit.

We also aim to find the best solution for the client, and focus on ensuring that the development work can also be adapted for future requirements. By considering the client’s long term plans for their CRM system we can make sure that any bespoke work is not isolated but forms part of their future needs.

Often development work it is not always as complicated as a client may first think. Often we can resolve a requirement for the client by identifying functionality that already exists within SuperOffice that is not being utilised by their team. Training and technical support may be all that is required to improve the system. Additionally, development work to improve a client’s system to meet their requirements can be resolved by integrating third party add-ons that already exist such as eMarketeer or Business Analyze with SuperOffice.

It is also becoming increasingly popular is to develop functionality using web pages (also called web panels). Basically we create a page you can access using a browser like Internet Explorer or Chrome. The web page is developed and designed completely by us but the functionality is dictated by the client and we also try to keep the look and feel consistent with the look and feel of SuperOffice for ease of use”.

Reducing the work to create a monthly management report down to just 0.12% of the original time!

“A specific example of bespoke work for SuperOffice for a client was some very simple development work to automate a rather time consuming Management Reports that required updating and printing every month.

The original process adopted by our client was a laborious task to prepare the report by reviewing statistics, sales figures and other information from SuperOffice and subsequently updating data within an external report. Our development work took two days to complete using (something about in Sequel etc.) and turned the onerous task into a “click refresh report” button reducing this process to well under a minute, a tiny fraction of the original effort. The invested development time was making a saving for the business within its second month of implementation.

Improving internal telesales procedures and increasing sales, customer and team satisfaction and profit.

“Over our 20 year history we have been approached with many special requirements and market specific requirements. In 2015 we were engaged by a dynamic organisation with a team of 40 internal telesales people making high volume call outs to businesses in the UK.

They were experiencing poor data management, lack of data sharing, the need to remove duplicate tasks and no clear method for follow up, to name but a few of their problems. Our brief was to create a process within SuperOffice to bring together the data management whilst also providing an easy to use telesales tool to allow the business to increase customer touch, manage information via a single data source, clean and manage the data for the business and remove work duplication.

As a result of the bespoke development, the organisation saw an improved performance within the telesales team, an increase in appointments and in turn an increase in business and sales. The SuperOffice functionality that we developed is a module called eTelesales and is now available as a commercial add on for SuperOffice.”

Improve the efficiency and sales and marketing processes in your business

The main benefit of bespoke development work is to streamline processes within the client’s business that also results in increased productivity and offering major time saving benefits. Here are some of the key benefits:

  • Save time – bespoke development creates time saving benefits to the users.
  • Better control of information – by using the same data sources across your business systems.
  • Reduce errors – by automating repetitive processes.
  • Simplify processes – saving time and releasing employees to focus on other tasks.
  • Better monitoring of sales performance – ensuring your team have real time results.
  • More unified sales and marketing processes – immediate alerts to sales leads via campaigns.
  • Improved customer services – providing a consistent, proactive and monitored service.

 

Synergy Technology has the technical resources to develop your SuperOffice system

Synergy Technology is a highly skilled accredited partner of SuperOffice. We have a dedicated technical team with extensive working knowledge of the software who are able to apply practical and customisable business solutions using the application.

Synergy Technology also provides a range of existing development work available to all SuperOffice users. Our eSuite modules including eTelesales, ePostcode, ePDF are designed and developed by technical experts in business programming and are designed to complement SuperOffice functionality. eSuite modules are created using a unique process of analysis and then applying a design and development solution to deliver a timely, cost effective solution that meets the needs of the small to medium business.

Our technical team can also offer your business ongoing guidance, advice and support to ensure SuperOffice is scaleable and adaptable to the changing needs of your business, including the implementation of additional applications such as digital marketing, mobile applications, advanced reporting and quote management. To discuss your development needs for SuperOffice, please contact Synergy Technology on 0345 456 0050 or send us an email today.

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03 Jan 2018

Making Big Data work for an SME

We spoke to Tony Poole, Director at Synergy Technology, for his experience and insight into the movement of Big Data and the analytics that goes along with it.

In terms of a Big Data project you have implemented, be it either internally in your business or externally with an SME client, what were the key objectives of the project?

“Traditionally in business you have a number of data “silos” – within accounting, ERP, contact management systems etc. as well as other data, like banking data, sales data – and, both could be national and international. The major problem for businesses is that it’s all disparate data.

What we have in real terms in businesses today, worldwide, is multiple silos of data that do not talk to each other. The objectives we aim to achieve with Big Data for clients, is to integrate these silos of data so that they are unified and easily accessible”.

And that was a challenge – to unify these silos?

“About six years ago the biggest challenge we had was that people had contact management data on one side and accounting information on the other side of their business. And when a customer would write to the organisation the accounts department might get the letter and update the accounts, but nobody would update the contact management system.

Now we have CRM, websites, social media and e-commerce platforms, and of course we have even more silos of data that are all disparate. The first hurdle to get over is linking simple internal systems together so if information is changed in any apex it changes throughout the business. For me that was the start of Big Data.

Now the challenge is even greater. Now it’s about taking data that’s internal to the business or purchased data, with data from the cloud, plus statistical data, and bringing it all together to build a better and more informed picture”.

What does that picture look like?

“We have clients who will take point of sale data, and combine it with data on the weather and data on their own customers.

What that allows them to do is to take a holistic view of sales in a particular store on a particular type of day.

A good example is a major homeware stockist in the UK who stocks barbecues when they know it’s coming into warm weather. But how they determine how many to precisely stock is down to data such as the temperature and the average sales at a certain temperature. We’ve seen this with a few clients and the demand for this data is growing; a one degree change in temperature can double sales”.

Is this the real impact of Big Data?

“Well, if I was running a store selling barbecues then Big Data has an impact and this would be: if the weather forecast tells me that next week will be on average 22 degrees, I’m going to have to stock up very quickly on barbeques. Because of the ease of access to data, I can now combine my predictive weather forecast with my historical sales data – which is sliced into specific temperature headings and predict how many barbecues I should have on order from my wholesaler, on their way to me, to satisfy the potential demand.

If this is done properly the impact is: more sales. If badly planned, I could be out of stock and thus not meet demand. By using the data that’s available and by bringing it all together it allows us to predict more accurately”.

How has it changed your clients’ processes?

Unless you have access to the right data – both internally to the business and external subscription data – you can’t bring it together. What we are seeing is that our clients are becoming more aware of this.

The largest area of this is in e-commerce and website purchasing, particularly for FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods) businesses, because people’s trends change based upon the time of year, their requirements, seasonal events etc.

It’s important to remember that what we’re really talking about is just the joining of the silos of data. Whether it’s data you own or that others own and you’re renting, or whether it’s just you keeping all your silos in sync, this end result is consolidating and joining to create Big Data.

If you would like to find how to consolidate your business data and utilise it more effectively for your buiness then contact Synergy Technology on 0345 345 0050 or send us an enquiry today.

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24 Nov 2017
23 Jun 2017

Work on your business and your suntan with pocket CRM!

As summer warms up and everyone wants to be outdoors, why not consider the benefits of working on the move and not having to rely on updating your contact data and business reports from the confines of your office?

Mobile CRM or mobile customer relationship management is a CRM tool designed for mobile devices including smartphones and tablets.
By connecting through mobile CRM, you, your sales team and employees on the move, have access to customer data through the CRM mobile app or through a web-based browser with cloud CRM.

Why mobile CRM really matters

Traffic from mobile devices continues to grow and in fact, mobile traffic is growing so fast that in some places, it has already surpassed desktop traffic. More than a quarter of all internet traffic is now from mobile devices.

As mobile adoption continues to grow and organisations become more flexible about working arrangements for their employees, traditional desktop applications such as CRM are moving into the mobile space.

Users and customers both expect information to be updated in real-time, not “when you get back to the office.” And, on average, sales teams spend more than 50% of their work day selling remotely. This means that your sales force needs access to real-time information.

Synergy Technology offers mobile CRM solutions

With over 12 years’ history in the CRM market, Synergy Technology are now one of the largest SuperOffice partners in the UK. Driven by a passion for customer relationship management, Synergy Technology is dedicated to providing software that supports the individual user to achieve stronger sales, marketing and customer service productivity. We can help you set up a mobile CRM system that fits the needs of your business and workforce on the go.

Here are Five reasons why mobile CRM system is good for business

If you’re looking to address sales productivity, sales effectiveness and to gain a competitive edge then mobile CRM is something for you to consider.

1. Access to up-to-date contact information

By having this information available, it will help your sales teams for call planning and preparation and is one of the key use cases for having a mobile CRM app.
Sales teams have access to any information about a client or potential client before they meet in person. This data could include recent email conversations, products recently purchased and current sales status.
Your sales teams get to become more personal than ever before.

2. Direct information update

A mobile CRM is a great tool for adding new leads directly into your CRM from anywhere. The sooner you get a potential lead logged, the better the chance you have of following it up and taking action. Mobile CRM makes all this possible, by allowing employees to instantly add new information and update client profiles.

3. Always updated

If your Account Manager visits a prospect and the visit subsequently requires changes regarding an in-progress deal or quote,  this can be updated on the mobile CRM without the need to wait until the Account Manager arrives back at the office, keeping your entire CRM always up to date – for everyone.

Sales teams often uncover key information about a client during or after a meeting. In order to provide the best service possible, this information needs to be spread quickly throughout the organisation, just in case the client decides to contact you or a member of your customer service team. Things change quickly in today’s world and you never know when something critical may happen to one of your accounts.

4. Real time reporting and faster decision making

Management teams can access real time sales reports to track business results while on the move and set alerts to be informed instantly for quicker and better decision making when a new deal is closed or sales decline. Instead of quarterly reports, management now has access to up to the minute data that can result in strategies being implemented sooner, rather than later.

5. Increased sales productivity

Another benefit of implementing a mobile CRM is providing sales teams with access to real time customer information while out in the field improves productivity.  A recent study by Nucleus Research* found that mobile access to a CRM increases sales force productivity by an average of 14.6% with a further 3 in 10 mobile CRM users reporting productivity improvement by more than 20%.

Information source and *statistics from: SuperOffice CRM

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23 Jun 2017

GDPR Compliance – Navigating a steep learning curve

Ensuring your business remains inline with the GDPR compliance will likely require you to implement more measures to protect and secure your data than most organisations are taking at present.

Companies must re-think how they engage with customers; information regarding what you will do with an individual’s data must now be made entirely transparent.
Regulators will have new enforcement powers and sanctions to shape how an organisation conducts its operations, and you will have to notify customers and agencies of a breach in security or confidentiality within a timeframe of 72 hours. You may also need to employ an independent data security officer too. Failure to comply will result in hefty fines.

Costly mistakes

The 2015 Information Security Breaches Survey by analysts PwC found that 90% of large UK organisations and 74% of UK SMEs reported a security breach in 2015.
This resulted in roughly £1.4 billion in regulatory fines.

If the frequency of data breaches remains at a similar level to 2015, under the GDPR, accumulative fines could reach £122 billion in 2018/19 – an increase of over 870%.

Besides the fines themselves, breaches also result in severe reputational damage and loss of revenue. When combined with these eye-watering fines, organisations that do not comply with the GDPR could find themselves in serious financial trouble.

The technological solution

There is no single ‘fix-all’ in terms of software that will guarantee complete security of your business. Instead, you should employ a set of tools and services to secure content holistically. These will need to be maintained, but can help substantially when it comes to remaining compliant with data security laws. Let’s explore what this security toolbox includes:

1. Firewalls and internet gateways

A firewall acts as a barrier between an organisation’s network of computers and the internet, allowing only inbound and outbound network traffic via authorised connections. Without this barrier, skilled cyber attackers can gain access to the sensitive information in your business.

Firewalls protect you against the threat of unauthorised access. Employing experts to manage your firewall security remotely or on-site can provide you with peace of mind that your content is safe and save you money in the long run.

2. Secure configuration

Upon their default installation, it’s unlikely your computer systems are fully secure.
Much of your hardware and software will require an additional level of configuration for maximum protection. Similarly, removing old and outdated software will reduce your software vulnerabilities – weaknesses found in a piece of software or operating system are an easy target for cyber attackers.

Managed security services take much of the IT security burden off your shoulders. Experienced consultants can work alongside you to build a solution that fits the compliance needs of your company – from securing employee emails to document access.

3. Access control

Permissions add an extra layer of security over the files your employees are accessing.
By giving out the correct permissions to accounts, workers can only access the content appropriate to their current role.
Avoid giving out administrator accounts to users just because they need access to a certain file or folder. This is important to meet GDPR compliance.

As a business grows, the need for controlling access becomes increasingly important, as does the task of managing it. A managed service provider can align your employees with the right permissions to ensure they’re only accessing the content they should be.

Download the Data Security Infograph
The Numbers driving GDPR Compliance

4. Malware Protection

Anti-virus and anti-malware products can scan your network regularly to detect and prevent potential threats. But it is your responsibility to ensure anti-malware tools are kept up to date and scanning the right files. You and your users will also need to know what to do if you are alerted to a threat in the system.

Remote monitoring services can also automate many key software updates on your systems. Managed network services ensure your system is consistently as powerful, secure and up to date as possible.

5. Software updates

Regular updates are necessary now more than ever as the pace of technology change continues to increase, meaning your software and hardware require regular maintenance to keep the system running smoothly – keeping workers productive and avoiding security vulnerabilities.

Remote monitoring services can also automate many key software updates on your systems. Managed network services ensure your system is consistently as powerful, secure and up to date as possible.

Learn more about GDPR compliance

What to expect from GDPR? Read our recent blog for more details.

Take a look at our online Business Talk Magazine for further information on GDPR. Synergy Technology is planning to hold workshops to help guide SMEs regarding GDPR. Register for our GDPR workshops today.

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15 Apr 2016

Top 10 Technology and IT Trends predicted for 2016

It’s 2016 – a year to celebrate some of our favourite quadrennial events: we get to welcome back the leap year, and cheer on Team GB at the Summer Olympics in Rio. There will be great rejoicing among bean-counters everywhere, as the UN has designated 2016 the International Year of the Pulses. Where we will see the greatest impact and innovation will be at the intersection of the current major waves of technology. 2016 will be all about confluence. Here are Jonathan Woodward’s, (Business Lead – BI & Analytics) top ten technology trends for 2016:

1. We’ll have more networked devices

We, as consumers and business people, continue to accumulate more devices. Ironically enough, a decade ago, the vision was to combine everything (e.g., Blackberry, Palm Pilot, mobile phone & pager) into a single device. And for the most part we did. But now there are multiple “single devices” – many mobile options for how we communicate and work. More than half of information workers report using three or more devices for work, and that number continues to grow. In 2016 this will take the form of cross-category devices: laptops that act like tablets; phones that work like desktops; wearables perform like smart phones, and so on. It’s no wonder that by 2020 the average person can expect to have seven networked devices.

Because of the cloud, our phones, tablets and wearables have access to a vast amount of processing power and information. This raises the questions of how we, as individuals, integrate and work best across all of our devices, and how our organisations manage and integrate these devices to maintain security (a different trend discussed later) and maximise productivity.

2. These networked devices will “see” and do more

It’s not just that we’ll have more things. As computing power gets faster, cheaper and smaller, the existing features in your things will continue to improve, new features will continue to be added. For instance, think about how much better the photos you take with your mobile device today are than the photos you took just three years ago. The capability already exists for immersive 3D holographic experiences with your phone. In 2016 developers will make more devices within this medium, and apps that explore this medium.

While 2015 was the year that smart wearables became mainstream consumer devices, 2016 will be the year that developers fight it out to become dominant players for “share of wrist”. Because more and more of these devices will make their way into the workplace, it’ll also be there year that developers seek to turn wearables into productivity devices. This competition means our wearables will be more powerful with better sensors, monitors, accelerometers and GPS tracking tools to help make our experiences while wearing them more personal and more productive. For instance, your wearable will be able to interpret your heartrate and breathing to let your colleagues know if you’re feeling fatigued or productive, stressed or creative. The challenge will be finding ways, across our things, to utilise even a fraction of the capabilities in our things.

3. Our things will have more things

As it becomes easier (i.e. cheaper, faster, smaller) to add more features to our networked devices, it also becomes easier to add more features to previously unconnected things. It is now economically viable, for instance, for laundry services to add sensors to bedsheets to reduce loss and better anticipate when they need to be replaced. Farmers can now monitor livestock with sensors similar to those in our smartwatches that can diagnose disease or help optimise feed, growth and yield. Assisted living facilities can monitor residents based on a number of sensors in their rooms to determine, for instance, if a resident has had a fall or is a risk of causing a fire. The real value in connecting these things to a network comes from how these things then communicate and coordinate with each other without human intervention.

4. All these things will create a lot of data

Of course, the natural bi-product of a) having more networked devices that do more, and b) creating networked devices from previously unconnected things is data. Loads and loads of data. Expect to see the trend of exponential data growth continue in 2016. Mobile data traffic will continue to keep pace with the 57% CAGR predicted through 2019. And should pass the that’s zettabyte (that’s 1,000,000 terabytes) threshold for global IP traffic by year’s end. For perspective, that’s over 80 times the data created by the sum of all human-created information before the year 2000. By 2020, that’s expected to reach 44 zettabytes – roughly the data storage required to record every word ever spoken by humans throughout history.

But it’s not just about the amount of data we produce, but also in the types we produce as well (new sensors, new or newly-networked devices, new social platforms, etc). We’ll also have to manage the speed with which new data is being produced (and therefore processed) and the speed (some say voracity) with which business decision-makers want to turn that data into insight. And we’re not doing a particularly good job of it. Depending on whom you ask, we’re only able to analyse about 0.5% the data we produce. That percentage goes up a bit if we look at the ability for companies to analyse the data they have – but only up to about 12%. Which brings us to the next prediction for 2016.

5. The skill gap for turning that data into insight and business process will separate winners from losers

The gap between our demand for data (or for insight from data) and the supply of talent that can interpret it isn’t new for 2016. It’s been a high priority among CIOs for at least the past five years, and it’s the reason that Data Scientist has been dubbed the Sexiest Job of the 21st century. It’s also the reason why companies have been willing to shell out loads to find top talent. What’s new for 2016, though, is the impact that early investments in analytics will start to pay off as the use of data becomes a competitive differentiator.

This isn’t just due to the creation of the data scientist role within an organisation, but rather because these individuals have had an opportunity to impact other parts of an organisation helping to turn data sceptics into data evangelists. As data scientists (or power BI users, business analysts or whatever other term you call them) have helped to familiarise other business decision-makers with the benefits of data-driven decision-making, the tools used to interpret data have become easier for non-data scientists to use. These factors, among others, help to create data winners and losers. At the worldwide level, those winners (i.e. leaders) will capture £1.1 trillion more in value from their data and analytics investments over the next few years than the losers (“others”).

6. The winners will be the ones who create the algorithms that turn that data into insight and process

It isn’t enough, though, for this data to drive business decisions. Even the most sophisticated predictive analytics rely on users within an organisation turning that insight into action. The next logical step (and the next big thing for 2016) is to develop proprietary algorithms that allow companies to turn data into autonomous action. Or as senior Gartner researchers describe it “how you do something with data, not just what you do with it.” Don’t worry, it’s not as scary as it sounds. The machines aren’t rising up.

Rather than Terminator, think of algorithms from Netflix used to serve up movie recommendations, or from The Associated Press used to curate information into articles and reports. But the algorithm economy isn’t just about serving up digital content. The algorithm for Google’s driverless car incorporates data from the physical (internal sensors and systems, readings of physical surroundings, GPS data, etc…) for an incredibly complex autonomous action – driving. Norway’s eSmart system collects a huge volume of data from previously non-networked meters, building sensors and a variety of other sources (a true example of big data). But it’s what it does with that data that sets it apart. Their algorithms enable their automated demand response solution to automatically control power load to buildings or other infrastructure to prevent outages.

7. Machines will understand how we work more

These algorithms aren’t static things, though. As they make their way into more systems, and are programmed to learn more about the data they process, the smarter they become. The better they become at anticipating our needs, as individuals or as organisations. Take Clutter, for instance. This feature in Office 365 utilises machine learning to understand your organisational relationships and prioritise your inbox by importance to you. Microsoft has made the underlying machine learning that enables features like Clutter available to the developer community to create their own machine learning applications to everything from rating one’s Movember moustache to predicting customer churn.

Because of this availability, machine learning applications will take off in 2016 – both in terms of volume and sophistication. Nowhere will that growth be more evident than with the increased importance of virtual personal assistant technology such as Cortana, which will help to curate the many disparate productivity apps we currently use. For instance, machine learning will allow the product marketing manager of a consumer packaged goods company to ask “Why is there a spike for laundry soap in Leeds?” The right machine learning app would be able to understand contextually who within the organisation would be likely to have the answer and help her find the territory manager for West Yorkshire. The app would also be able to evaluate known sales influence models using the context of Leeds, against relevant data sources to try to identify the reason for the spike.

8. Machines will understand our businesses more

The same technology that will enable virtual personal assistants to curate information for individuals’ productivity in 2016, will also power smarter interactions between organisations. As more data is managed in the cloud, it becomes easier for companies to securely share information with each other, and turn that information into action/business processes.

Expect 2016 to be the year we begin to see machine learning applied to massive datasets across organisations. This could be from sectors (e.g. pharmaceuticals and medical research sharing information on human genomic data) or complementary supply chains (e.g., an aeroplane manufacturer applying machine learning in partnership with airlines and parts manufacturers).

9. Each new networked node creates new vulnerabilities

While we’ll see increased data sharing and automation of the way we make sense of our data across industries, we’ll also see increased vulnerabilities. For each new node we add to the cloud – for each previously non-networked device that gets “smart” or for each bit of shared data across organisations, we exponentially increase the risk to the overall network. In 2016, expect to see successful companies refining their data security strategy to account for these threats. Interestingly enough, a few of the previously mentioned trends – machine learning and advanced algorithms – will be key to maintain security.

10. I will be wrong:

Granted, the above is a fairly predictable set of predictions. The four big mega-trends of the past few years (IoT, Big Data, Machine Learning and Cyber Security) will continue to drive the majority of the technology discussion, I’m almost certain that there will be a breakthrough trend in 2016 that isn’t discussed above. Adoption of a nascent technology will be faster or the big strides expected within the above trends won’t materialise as expected. For instance, interactive headsets such as HoloLens or Oculus Rift might gain widespread adoption through a major commercial breakthrough. Conversely, the dearth of data scientists may limit the degree to which the algorithm economy takes hold.

Are you ready for 2016?

However these big trends shake out in 2016, though, the one strand that runs through all of them is data. How prepared are you make the most of your data? Have you thought through all the sources of data your organisation will come in contact with? Do you have the right people and systems in place to take advantage of the algorithm economy and machine learning? Have you thought through the security and vulnerabilities around your data? Synergy Technology can help you determine the ideal complete business solution for your company, call us today on 0845 456 0050.

Article from Microsoft: Authored by Jonathan Woodward,
Business Lead – BI & Analytics on January, 2016
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