2023 is coming to an end. This year we have worked closely with our customers, supporting them in their digital transformation projects, while keeping a finger on the pulse of the most important topics for their business and top technological trends.
In this blog, we’ll take a look at the tech trends of 2024, from sustainability to generative AI and the centrality of data in internal corporate decision-making processes. We’ll see how companies can leverage technology to sharpen their competitive edge on the market, adjust to increasingly stringent regulations, and fulfil their customers’ requests.
So, what digitalisation trends and strategies are companies set to pursue in 2024? Let us look at them together.
Trend #1: Technology that supports sustainability will make the difference
In 2024, sustainability will remain a top priority for companies of all sizes, in all sectors. In particular, enterprises must set their sights on spearheading sustainability targets set by national governments and supranational institutions, the European Union first and foremost.
As of 2024 the sustainability report will be mandatory for all big companies and listed SMEs. This revolution will directly impact small and medium unlisted businesses too, as large companies will be required to ensure all suppliers comply with certain parameters in order to develop a sustainable supply chain.
Compliance with sustainability regulations is more than just a means to an end. According to Salesforce (State of the Connected Customer, fifth edition), 78% of clients believe the environmental practices of enterprises influence their purchasing decisions. In light of this, companies can use technology to ensure sustainability data are: verifiable, used to predict and reduce risks, improve their reputation and generate a positive impact on the environment. So it comes as no surprise that Gartner* estimates that in 2027, a portion of remuneration of a quarter of all Chief Information Officers will be linked to the environmental impact of technological solutions and choices implemented at the company.
The link between ecological transition and digital transformation has also been reiterated by the European Commission in its Communication released on 29 June 2022, containing the Strategic Foresight Report for the year, in which it confirms digitalisation as the key to spearheading the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
In seeking technologies congenial to a sustainability-based approach, CRM is emerging as crucial in the pursuit of an integrated and modern approach to green issues, thanks to the tools provided by platforms. The advantage lies in the real-time acquisition of carbon emissions data and in the daily monitoring of company consumptions, for the prompt definition of actions to be undertaken and reporting in compliance with regulations.
An innovative Analytics tool provides a full picture of generated emissions and enables the development of a sustainability plan grounded in data.
The implementation of a modern ERP solution maximises supply chain efficiency, improving productivity and reducing environmental impact.
The food sector for one is certainly reaping the benefits of all this technology, as it plays a key role in the achievement of sustainability goals. Infor has created a specific solution for this industry, Infor Cloudsuite for Food & Beverage, which significantly improves supply chain efficiency, while also reducing waste produced by companies.
Trend #2: Generative AI is transforming the experience of customers and employees
Much like sustainability, generative AI is profoundly influencing companies, especially in how they interact and build customer relations. 2023 was the year in which generative artificial technology emerged and 2024 will confirm its front-line role as it continues to dominate the technological scene.
Gartner* is the first to confirm this loud and clear, predicting that by 2026, generative artificial intelligence will automate 60% of all design and development efforts for new web and mobile applications. According to IDC* estimates, company investments in artificial intelligence will grow to 143 billion in 2027.
This trend has also been confirmed in a recent Salesforce report* on generative AI, which predicts that in the next 18 months, 67% of IT seniors will consider this technology a priority and an impressive 33% define it as a top-priority business challenge. Generative AI is seen as something highly positive, indeed over 60% of sales and support professionals interviewed by Salesforce believe that generative AI will help them satisfy the requests and requirements of customers more effectively. There is a shortage of skills however, as 63% of sales and 58% of support professionals report not having the necessary skills for the effective and safe use of this technology.
Based on this data, Salesforce launched Einstein GPT in March, the first CRM solution based on generative AI, which provides contents that support different company departments (sales, customer service, marketing, e-commerce and IT), leveraging artificial intelligence.
Generative artificial intelligence is already widely used in different sectors to create quality contents based on existing data, with the leveraging of Machine Learning and Deep Learning. Generative AI is revolutionising sales communications, marketing campaigns, documentation on products and the creation of other materials for the end customer. More specifically:
• In the customer service area, generative AI enables prompt and accurate responses, combining information collected from different sources. This makes concentrating on the customer possible, by identifying the problem they have and ensuring its rapid resolution.
• This technology enables the provision of a personalised service for customers, with individually tailored contents, advice and communications.
• In the sales area, generative AI enables sales team to automate certain activities and spend less time on repetitive and time consuming tasks, like general communications for customers, thus simplifying sales process activities.
• In the marketing field, thanks to generative AI companies can optimise campaigns, generate custom communication for each segment and improve brand awareness.
However, only companies that use this technology in a structured way will be able to boost employee involvement and make customers feel more appreciated and understood.
Trend #3: Data-driven approach and data democratisation
From recent research we at Atlantic conducted with Vanson Bourne on companies of the B&PS sector, it emerges that 91% of CIOs say it will be important for their business to be data-driven in
the next 12-months. This is an unmissable opportunity for companies to make their business grow. These companies are all too aware of the immense advantages of implementing this kind of approach: referring to a single source of truth, grounded in data, improved decision-making processes, a greater capacity to keep up with a continuously evolving market, and more streamlined customer support.
A truly data-driven company could never do without another crucial aspect: data democratisation. Everyone must be able to make informed decisions, which must be backed by data. In this sense data democratisation is set to become a major tech trend in 2024. With the development of self-service analysis for users, data accessibility will permeate all levels of company organisation. This will enable the autonomous exploration and analysis of data and information, knocking down information silos in companies. Thus employees will be able to intercept trends and new business opportunities, sharpening the company’s competitive edge.
Data democratisation is far from something that can be improvised: it requires a strategic approach. Bayer Pharmaceuticals, the Bayer division that develops and commercialises prescription drugs, decided to place its trust in the expertise of Atlantic Technologies in order to implement its very own data democratisation pathway.
Trend #4 – Data integration for competitive growth
From our study on CPG companies it also emerged that 71% of CIOs believe data integration is a strategic asset for the future. Most IT managers in companies recognise the importance of a data integration system in improving company agility and efficiency.
Two companies, Bucci Industries and Ceccato Automobili, are all too aware of this. Both turned to Atlantic Technologies in order to optimise their processes with MuleSoft, the number one global integration platform.
It is clear that data integration is no longer the sole concern of IT departments and industry professionals: it is becoming an increasingly central issue across all company business units. This will be even more the case in 2024, when it will become a top technological trend for companies.
This is because pooling available company data ensures they are used to their full potential and generates benefits, both in terms of business and ROI.
Trend #5: Loyalty programs in B2B and B2C
Loyalty programs for B2B and B2C are another topic of interest. Promoting relationships and creating a solid rapport of loyalty with customers is increasingly important for both company and consumer customers.
Thanks to certain technological functionalities, the ongoing loyalty of clients is achievable, for example by providing specific contents, participation in targeted events, or by running a customised awards campaign, fed by behavioural consumer data. In particular, with a cutting edge solution for managing loyalty programs, the following can be achieved:
• Improved performance and profitability through AI
• The transformation of customers into brand supporters with Referral Marketing actions
• The generation of constant customer engagement through linked promotion systems
We hope that these insights can help your company define the best digital strategy for the year to come! Atlantic can help you develop a roadmap for your company’s digital transition, providing you with the comprehensive expertise of our consultants and top technological solutions in the fields of CRM, ERP and BI.