The boundaries between technology and society are fading.
The concept of Next Economy is related to a post-industrial stage, build on top of various emerging digital technologies, AI in particular. It will require important changes in the way we measure workforce and business success, and Tim O´Really -who defined and named it – is claiming that we should evolve from the actual short-term business-success thinking towards a sustainable long-term thinking supported by deep data-driven decisions.
Besides O´Really, thought-leaders as Tesla’s Elon Musk, are exhibiting a similar compromise on their business plans with the long-term goal of a more sustainable society. Success in this every-changing landscape requires from each of us – individuals and businesses – the will to create a better world for our children with the support offered by the new technology.
FUTURE OF WORK IN THE NEXT ECONOMY
Denying the impact of AI on work reduction will be naive. The future of work is here, and there is a growing alarm over the impact that most recent advances in the Internet of Things, Robotics and Artificial Intelligence are having on the possible loss of jobs as we know them today.Perhaps our children will not become the skillful always-steady-hand accurate surgeonsthat we dreamed of but will be specialists to control the robot that not only perform the surgery, but decide when, where, and how to make it instead. Perhaps those who today work in call-centers will keep longer and warmer conversations that strengthen a truly-personal new relationship with the customer with prior support of intelligent bots having solved the most routine and urgent incidents and demands, speaking and understanding all the subtleties of the human voice in-context, and so making the service easier, faster and cheaper.
The need for change is clear but coping with the changes of the Next Economy will be neither immediate nor easy. The business leaders who will drive progress need to be self-aware analysing their current organizational and business operation models, without fear to change
In such upcoming new scenario, a responsible and committed company understands and supports the employee and helps him/her reinvent himself/herself at the equivalent speed at which new technologies emerge, so the new professionals become able to grow to previously unattainable goals. New powers like hybrid skills, flexibility and employee adaptability are the most sought active. Talent management and adaptive network organization are key to success.
Such new company also supports the disappearance of rigid corporate hierarchies helping modern post-industrial network organizations to be prepared to deal with the complexity of the new economy in the age of global markets. Brilliantly explained by Niels Plaeging in Organizing for Complexity
But, in my opinion, the next economy will imply additional changes than those on the workforce.
THE NEW BUSINESS PARADIGM OF EVERYTHING-AS-A-SERVICE
A company that aspires to innovate trusts and openly collaborates with big companies and digital unicorns of different colours. The Next Economy also pushes us to redefine the borders and cooperation with former competitors and suppliers and the society as a whole to discover new blue oceans of opportunity making the old business models obsolete.
The entire concept of “ownership” has been redefined by the subscription and the sharing economy, especially for the youngest generation, creating new limits among “what we want to own” and “what we want to “consume”. Ownership is becoming more emotional and personal and we expect to consume on-demand a vast majority of things including houses, cars, entertainment and many others.
As a consequence of digital consumer pressure, most of the old products are or will be mutated to be consumed “as-services”. Thus resulting in a greater disintegration, fragmentation and specialization of digital services consumable on-demand and re-ensambables that redefine the entire value chain and create a replacement of the culture of competition for inter-enterprise integration.
Among the most successful new paradigms today we found: “Insurance as a Service“, “Logistics as a Service“, “Connectivity as a Service” and even “The Car and Smart Home as a Service“. Cloud computing has already become the great enabler of the new as-a-service business models and Microservices Architectures the most efficient form of integration.
FRICTION-LESS DIGITAL EXPERIENCE
Changes in consumption habits of young, and not so young generations, have redesigned the experience and none of us can draw the line between our professional life and our personal life.Old boundaries between business hierarchies of the past, and old boundaries between businesses, are followed by the complete disappearance within the limits of the Customer Experience.
The new map that redefines all interaction has no edges and reduces any friction increasing the traceability of experience from marketing to conversion in the eyes of the departments of marketing, sales and customer service.
The mobile-first has given way to mobile-only, and the culture of mobile apps succumbs to the unstoppable success of messaging. New chatsbots accelerate, simplify and amplify the interaction. The human voice becomes the first communication channel client-company-employee and Siri and Alexa are among our best friends, and finally the intelligent devices are part of the equation of the customer experience
MEANINGFUL INTERACTIONS DRIVEN-BY-DATA
Data is no longer mere marketing materials. Companies and public institutions are testing completely new experiments based on data that reflect the reality in which we live today.
The question to ask before launching a new business model is: can I take it out without data?…and if the answer is no, probably worth rethinking. Data gives meaning to all interactions with customers, employees, and other companies in our ecosystem.
The more digitally mature companies evolve their business models to powerful data-driven business and use the data as the mainstay of their new business models as a service, management talent and culture and collaboration with third parties and marketing.
- Large companies owning relevant data such as Telcos and Banks continue to make progress in marketing customer data to retailers, media companies or others
- Government agencies combat fraud rates using data from the Sharing Economy and mining new transactional cannels as the Bitcoin network
- Retailers adjust stock forecasting and set dynamic product prices in real time by analysing data
- Energy resources planning and greater respect for the planet is achieved with data from smart-devices
Data is not a per se value but the interactions derived from it. Small and relevant data extracted from the mass with predictive technologies used to identify such new data-pearls and to support the best decisions in real-time mixing data we own, data we share and data we conquer from our key partners. Data is not only the main form of capital but a new invisible interface among machines, business and people.
BUILDING A BETTER WORLD FOR OUR CHILDREN
Machines learning faster than we learn, business models in which everything mutates into service, customer interaction without any friction and data as the most important capital asset of the company. Achieving these goals requires a new generation of cloud enterprise technology to support and agile management of human and financial resources, as well as fully automates business processes at the speed of light “all-in-one place”. But as a conclusion:
“In the Next Economy new technology platforms become the infrastructure of prosperity”. Tim O’Reilly
While entering into the Next Economy the new technology is what can allow us to address some of our most urgent goals:
- Solving the energy and environmental sustainability challenge in the wave began with the commitment of the electric car and energy storage initiated by companies like Tesla and Solar City
- Ensuring network security in the interest of greater security and surveillance of us and of our families and an early detection of social threats.
- Creating a health-care provisioning sustainable model that allows greater independence and quality of life of older people.
- Reducing the digital and gender divide
All of us, each and every one of us, we are obliged to strive to create a better world for our children in the digital economy of today and the next economy of the future.