The enterprise technology and software development industry is by its very nature always in a state of constant flux. Perpetually adapting to new trends is why some of us love it so much; it’s a profession that never gets old or stale. I’m a big believer in knowing what the next big, hot issues are coming my way, so here’s my list for what we can expect in 2019.
1. Security. Security. Security.
Everyone in every organization will need to up their security awareness and preparedness. We hear almost weekly about massive corporate breaches and the compromising of customer names. Do you want your business to suffer because of poor security practices?
Data is a critical game changer for most companies, particularly now that more are preparing for greater use of artificial intelligence in their operations and business processes. Not only is data an excellent internal tool to help measure the effectiveness of your operations and business, but it is also a great tool to use as the basis of regulating supply/inventory, customer preferences, product performance and eventually predictive selling of an organizations products and services.
We will continue to see DevOps function as a critical component in helping companies become more agile, lean and possess a built-in timeless relevance. DevOps has ushered in the era of continually integrating and delivering software and systems to your customers making automated testing and performance metrics paramount to any company attempting to provide modern software, systems and solutions. DevOps concepts are also spilling over into the business side of an organization with some of the practices getting adopted throughout the enterprise.
4. Natural Language Processing (NLP)
NLP is a hidden gem in helping companies figure out their voice, localization, and accessibility options. Being able to have voice options available to your staff and customers is not an option anymore. Understanding how to process the human voice, do a translation on the fly, and make your software, systems and services available to all is table-stakes today. Moreover, with the rise of home devices from Google, Amazon, Facebook and others this area is going to explode even more.
Overall, we will find more uses for blockchain in enterprises. I’m talking about supply chain management, digital voting, title transfers, data sharing and perhaps even more payment capabilities. We are all watching the assent of cryptocurrencies with bitcoin, but remember the technology behind this phenomena can propel lots of other distributed tasks, functions and activities.
6. Robotic Process Automation (RPA)
As the use of automation accelerates, organizations will struggle with both the inherent lack of “people” in the workplace and a way to find alternative jobs for those displaced by automation. One step towards the use of more robots is RPA that promises to automate more of the mundane, repetitive work that can use the precision of machines. RPA will move quickly in the industrial setting in the next couple of years.
7. Machine Learning and Deep Learning
These two disciplines will move into mainstream enterprises at a phenomenal rate. As a result, we will have an increased supply of data, and a higher demand for workers with the skills to process it. But with all the data at our disposal, how do you make sense out of it? How do you train your data to discover more insights or know when your data is learning about its learning and improving? These issues we will need to resolve these issues in the next couple of years.
8. Digital Twins
As we prescribe and simulate predictive situations that blend the physical and virtual worlds, what does this mean for businesses? Currently, this mixed reality blend is making the experience an immersive one. However, as this heats up, you will see more virtual replicas of our physical world. Internet of Things (IoT) is certainly pushing this forward, but so are efforts in the healthcare and automotive industries.
Microservices are primarily here to stay because it is not easy to break up huge, monolithic systems. For years now we have cobbled together software into larger systems that controlled whole enterprises, and now we want them to become more agile and adaptive. While microservices can go a long way in achieving this, it brings a new set of challenges like orchestration, service-level agreement (SLAs) for each service, security decentralized and a host of other issues.
5G will become a reality which begs the question, what will the impact be on the bazillions of mobile phones, cell providers, and business opportunities? As we hurl our planet forward with all of our sensors and IoT devices we are facing an explosion of data and 5G with its nearly zero-latency will help make this near real-time. This near zero-latency is very important for health devices, autonomous vehicles and industrial equipment needing to react quickly along with other high- performance scenarios.
Is there anything else that you think belongs on this list? Post a comment below to get the conversation started.
Mike Hendrickson is the VP, Technology & Developer Products at Skillsoft.