C. P. Gurnani is MD and CEO, Tech Mahindra.
We are at the crossroads of a major technology revolution, which should be leveraged responsibly to create a truly connected and inclusive world. For this, we must smoothen out the vivid creases existing in societies, and the world at large—especially the ones about economic growth and the glaring climate crisis. As we march forward, a collaborative approach is needed to get going on climate action, sustainability, and economic welfare. The World Economic Forum (WEF) 2022, set the stage for translating these thoughts into action. Let us take a look at a few key insights from this global forum that can drive the next decade of disruptive growth.
If you want to reach the consumer today, the medium is digital. Ecommerce has been one of the fastest-growing businesses in the last decade and reports are projecting it to be a rising market in the next decade. As of 2021, the global ecommerce industry market value stood at $13 trillion and is expected to grow with an estimated value of $55.6 trillion by 2027, showing a CAGR of 27 percent during the 2022-2027 period. All other B2B and B2C organisations are adopting a digital presence for engaging with stakeholders in a two-way communication format. Payment transactions have shifted smoothly to digital thanks to the newly emerged fin-tech sector. The potential of technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) in driving customer experience is tremendous. By 2024, AI's ability to identify emotions will influence more than half of the online advertisements we see. Studying consumer behaviour across offline and digital platforms through augmented analytics and AI will help in turning the data collected into more consumable forms. Technology can thus play a pivotal role in decision-making and curating meaningful customer experiences.
The global information security market is estimated to reach $170 billion by 2022. As businesses and consumers shift to online mode, cyber-attacks are a giant threat to the technology infrastructure. In the past decade, we have seen instances of cyber crimes worth millions and billions, and the next decade needs to be prepared with cyber resilience. The cyber risks will rise with the advancements in emerging technologies such as metaverse, cryptocurrency, NFTs, and blockchain. Organisations need to proactively secure their business operations and digital systems. With the economic unrest and rising ransomware attacks, collective action is the need of the hour. Most organisations are concerned only with the scope of their servers and networks, whereas they should be planning for threats to the external ecosystem too. Cyber vulnerabilities could have a detrimental impact not only on a brand or organisation but also on national security. It is estimated that collective global spending on cybersecurity has now reached $145 billion a year and is predicted to exceed $1 trillion by 2035.
All-round development of people, quality education, and upskilling are inter-connected necessities that are non-negotiables to survive and thrive in today’s world. Indeed, investing in a growth agenda will involve cost, but the lack of it costs even more. Empowering people with quality education will enable them to upgrade their skills, which will increase productivity levels and output. Be it our personal or professional lives, today, everything is driven by technology, which is why familiarity with technology should be built purposefully. To keep pace with the dynamically changing world, we should not only learn continuously but also be ready to unlearn some aspects and also re-learn the new way. There is also the need for greater integration of higher education with vocational training. As technology is rapidly evolving, organisations are looking for full-stack professionals who can understand and implement solutions end-to-end, which requires gaining mastery in multiple disciplines within an organisation.
5G is ‘the’ next-generation technology designed to meet future wireless connectivity requirements. Whether it’s the education sector, gaming, healthcare, retail, or telecom operators, to mention a few, each sector is now an adopter of this technology which is generating waves of positive change. Now with automation enabled by Artificial Intelligence (AI), along with the Internet of Things (IoT) and edge computing in manufacturing, 5G is equal to connected solutions. 5G connectivity is undeniably going to be a great value adder. It's fascinating that by the end of 2025, 5G will account for just over a fifth of total mobile connections, and more than two in five people worldwide will live within reach of a 5G network
There is no Planet B. If there’s any legacy worth passing down to future generations, then it has to be a safe haven for all—with equitable and inclusive growth opportunities and resources for each of its inhabitants. Innovative use of emerging technologies can be a game-changer in protecting the environment. Organisations can deliver intelligent solutions using 5G, which can enable remote monitoring of energy sites, distribution of energy within a smart-grid, automation of distribution, and so on. In addition to the game-changing use of emerging technologies in building a sustainable world of tomorrow, we should leverage the power of the 4R mantra - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Recover in restoring the world of yesterday. It is time that we understand that earth is only a bigger version of our own home that needs our care.
The writer is MD & CEO of Tech Mahindra.
The thoughts and opinions shared here are of the author.
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