To compete and succeed in a world where digital is everywhere, companies need a new focus on balancing “value” with “values,” aligning their drive to create business value with their customers’ and employees’ values and expectations, according to Accenture Technology Vision 2020. The 20th edition of Accenture’s annual report predicts the key technology trends that will redefine businesses over the next three years.
According to the 2020 report, “We, The Post-Digital People: Can your enterprise survive the ‘tech-clash?,” even though people are embedding technology into their lives more than ever before, organizations’ attempts to meet their needs and expectations can fall short. As companies enter the decade of delivering on their digital promises — and in a world where digital technology is everywhere — a new mindset and approach is required.
While some have referred to today’s environment as a “tech-lash,” or backlash against technology, that term fails to acknowledge the extent to which society is using and benefitting from technology. Rather, it’s a tech-clash — a clash between business and technology models that are incongruous with people’s needs and expectations.
Of the more than 6,000 business and IT executives worldwide that Accenture surveyed for the Technology Vision report, 83% acknowledge that technology has become an inextricable part of the human experience. As part of the research this year, Accenture also surveyed 2,000 consumers — 70% of whom expect their relationship with technology to be more or significantly more prominent over the next three years.
“Dazzled by the promise of technology, many organizations created digital products and services just because they could, without fully considering the human, organizational and societal consequences,” said Paul Daugherty, Accenture’s chief technology & innovation officer. “Today we’re seeing a tech-clash caused by the tension between consumer expectations, the potential of technology, and business ambitions — and are now at an important leadership inflection point. We must shift our mindset from ‘just because’ to ‘trust because’ — reexamining our fundamental business and technology models and creating a new basis for competition and growth.”
According to the report, continuing with existing models doesn’t just risk irritating customers or disengaging employees, but could permanently limit the potential for future innovation and growth. But tech-clash is a challenge that can be solved. The Technology Vision identified five key trends that companies must address over next three years to defuse tech-clash and realize new forms of business value that will be driven in part by stronger, more trusting relationships with stakeholders.