Designed to highlight discussions on megatrends such as metaverse, mixed reality, applied AI, industrial IoT, robotics, zero trust and more, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella talked about the four key trends that will help organisations navigate the change and emerge stronger in this new normal. He was speaking at the first day of the Microsoft’s Future Ready conference.
Hybrid Work: Flexibility will be the key
Starting with the trend that is transforming every company, Nadella argued that the new notion of hybrid work is altering the very idea of work and workforce.
“It starts with a new world of hybrid work. We are seeing a change in how we work when we work and where our work gets done. More and more people are also asking that very fundamental question, why we work. This leads to two challenges that what we call the hybrid paradox and the great reshuffle,” he said.
According to Microsoft, 70 per cent of the employees want more flexible remote work options, and about the same number also say that they want more in-person connections. 58 per cent of the people, who expect to spend most and the least time in the office, say they plan to do so for the very same reason -- the need for more focused work. And more people are changing jobs than ever before.
“When it comes to hybrid work, there is no standard and flexibility will be key. Productivity and flexibility though are not mutually exclusive. Every organisation needs a new digital fabric for collaboration that brings together both digital and physical spaces. They need to strengthen connections between employees and their company's mission, between employees and their managers and empower employees to ensure their wellbeing and exercise their flexibility without sacrificing any career advancement,” said Nadella.
Building hyper-connected business
The second trend Nadella highlighted is building a hyper-connected business. “A sweeping business process transformation is underway. Over the past year and a half, we talked about how we had to pivot sales, customer service, manufacturing to be remote ready. Going forward, this will just be built-in by design. We need that next level of real-time hyperconnectivity between businesses and between consumers and businesses, where data and intelligence flow freely to tackle the challenges of supply and demand,” argued Nadella.
He further added that by 2025, it is projected that sales and marketing processes will involve more proactive engagements than reactive ones, all the way from customer marketing to supply chain. Going forward, every business process will be collaborative powered by data and AI and will bridge the digital and physical worlds.
Building digital capabilities
The third trend Nadella talked about is how businesses are becoming digital and building digital capability will be of paramount importance. This requires having the best multi-cloud, multi-edge infrastructure, and tooling to support fusion teams across the organisation while working together to build new solutions.
“Computing is becoming distributed and embedded in the real world. And the application models are transforming rapidly to run on the edge with new ambient intelligent capabilities. The percentage of industrial control systems that will include analytics and AI inference capabilities at the edge will increase by six-fold in the next four years,” he said.
Going forward, every organisation will need a more distributed, more intelligent, more autonomous computing fabric, one that they can use to rapidly build, manage, and deploy applications anywhere. And they will need new tools that bring together both pro developers and domain experts.
Nadella also highlighted the need to protect everything with end-to-end security. And as cybersecurity is the biggest threat to digital transformation, it's the number one risk facing every business going forward.
“Cybercrime is also costing economies more than $6 trillion each year. And that's expected to increase to $10 trillion by 2025. Every organisation needs comprehensive tools across identity, security, compliance, privacy, as well as management. And they need a cross-platform multi-cloud zero-trust architecture," Nadella pointed out.
As India is stepping into the digital-first world, individuals, communities, organisations, and governments are partnering with the tech ecosystem. Microsoft too is working closely with the government, industry, and civil society partners on several initiatives to empower Indians to achieve more.
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