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The Evolution of enterprise IT

Jack Loo | April 25, 2011
Accenture picks out eight trends that can help reshape information technology.

Dr Kishore Swaminathan, chief scientist, Accenture

SINGAPORE, 21 APRIL 2011—In the near future, CIOs are likely to move away from applications and onto data platforms, according to an Accenture study conducted late last year.

“IT decisions are going to be made around questions like ‘What data am I managing, what are the applications data is supporting, how and where is the data stored?’” said Dr Kishore Swaminathan, chief scientist, Accenture. Instead of supporting applications, platform architectures will be used to cope with soaring volumes of data and the growing complexity of data management.

The shift towards data platforms will also see the emergence of a variety of databases types, such as streaming databases serving as alternatives to the tried and trusted relational database.

This change is one of eight trends picked out by Accenture that will help drive evolution in enterprise IT in its annual Accenture Technology Vision 2011 report.

“IT has been in a support role, and these trends are conspiring to gather at this moment to actually create significant value differentiation,” said Swaminathan.

Another trend is the change of mentality behind information security. IT has built everything around the idea of “100 percent” security. This will be replaced by a cascaded, reflex-like security architecture that responds proportionately to threats when and where they happen.

Swaminathan pointed out that this will create a more automated approach cutting down human intervention. Also, managing security  will  become so complex and specialised that IT departments could end up outsourcing to third-parties.

The social network

The Accenture report predicts that due to the emergence of social media, company websites may no longer be the first port of call for customers.

Swaminathan added that the long standing belief that there should be no third party handling the online interaction between a company and its users will fade away.

For instance, instead of asking customers to register their personal details at a company’s website, Swaminathan said companies want people to log in with their Facebook IDs. “When you use a social identity, they can know who your friends are and what kind of topics that you are interested in,” he said.

Swaminathan forecasts that analytics  will  evolve from being a set of niche applications and become part of a broader set of software.

With more organisations keen to apply analytics over unstructured data, “social CRM” could experience rapid adoption. “It is doing CRM by doing data mining of what the customer is saying about your product that can be gathered online,” he said.

Other trends identified in the Technology Vision 2011 report:

*Cloud Computing: Through hybrid cloud-based application and platform services, Software-as-a-Service and Platform-as-a-Service  will  provide IT departments with increased functionality and flexibility.


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