What will 2021 bring us . Part 3

In the previous blog we discussed Hybrid Cloud and Cyber security as trends in 2021. In this blog we will discuss. 

  • Citizen Development 
  • Automation 
  • Artificial Intelligence 
  • Other technologies and trends

Citizen Development 

The last few years has seen a growing investment in Low-Code and No Code platforms to speed up development and to improve business alignment when creating applications. The impacts of 2020 created an even higher demand on IT departments to adjust and create new processes to support this new way of working. Before 2020, efficiency was the main driver to improve processes  however remote working now plays a correlating role.   

Customers were keen to switch to new models and extend their business with Self Service and Commercial Portals,  despite the already high demand and backlog within their IT departments. External resources are also scarce due to continued growth in demand. Adding Citizen Development in the mix is a way to reduce the pressure on IT Departments and alleviate backlogs.   

In 2021 we expect customers to further invest in Low Code / No Code platforms and embrace Citizen Development tools available in their current applications. We anticipate seeing our Oracle JD Edwards customers embracing Orchestrator and UDO frameworks to easily improve processes. At Quistor, we will invest time and resources in empowering our customers in utilising these technologies. We recently announced a new Orchestration training course and we will  continue  investing in Low Code / No Code offerings to extend your application landscape.   

Our support will be focused on giving you a head start by delivering training, coaching and (remote) support in better utilising the tools in your organisation. This future proof approach is designed to upskill your organisation internally so that we act as an advisor, instead of outsourcing the complete development to us.   

 

Automation 

Automation is something we have seen on the agenda for years now. Simple task automation  and  workflows  have  been  present  for  years in many systems such as JD Edwards. Processes like Automated matching of invoices is broadly implemented.

 

More recently we have seen further automation of tasks;  Orchestrator  within  JD  Edwards to automate ERP tasks,  Microsoft Flow to automate office related tasks are just a couple of examples. Looking  at  the  discussions  we’ve  had  with some of our customers in the past year, we expect a growing demand for more RPA tools in 2021.  Customers  are  starting  to  delve  deeper into the benefits to establish a positive business case for an RPA platform. We continue to see a growing number of customers leveraging Orchestrator  as the automation tool within JD Edwards.

As a whole, we expect to see a continued shift in our customers from Task Automation with one tool to  Process  Automation,  and will further develop onto platforms and ecosystems  in the  future.   

 

Artificial Intelligence 

A big driver for Automation will be AI. With AI it will be possible to have better results and less exceptions in  the  process.  Of course, a system’s ability to learn will only be as good as the quality and quantity off the underlying data.  This is of course where quality supersedes quantity.   

We  see  the  first  AI  usage  in  chatbots  and  we  expect  AI  will  be  used  in the ERP domain for  processes  such  as  demand  forecasting  in Warehousing,  automating month-end  processes, customer service planning based on skills and resource evaluations.   

Besides Digital Assistants (Chatbots) we don’t expect big AI implementations in 2021 just yet, but companies  should  begin to  consider  the  use of AI as they start planning their strategic AI roadmaps.   

Other technologies/trends 

Besides the aforementioned topics; we have not forgotten those that remain:  

  • Blockchain 
    We still see companies looking at Blockchain and indeed it is very powerful in some cases.  However, it is not considered essential within business, therefore we are not expecting a big  uptake in  customers starting  proof  of concepts or real-life implementation in the near future.  
  • Augmented Reality 
    We see the AR market developing fast. Smart glasses and  tablet/phone applications  have  cemented  their  place  in   the consumer markets and will soon find their way to business areas  like Field Service (remote worker support) or Warehouse (AR order picking). Although technology is maturing, it is still in the early stages, so we don’t expect to see it broadly implemented just yet.  

 

With this series of blogs, we hope to have provided some insights on what to expect in 2021. Of course, nothing remains certain. Who could have envisioned themselves in the midst of a pandemic? Who  would  have  thought  that  the  inevitable shift to a more remote working set-up would have been so drastic and instantaneous?  

Perhaps the ‘new normal’ is here to stay, perhaps not, regardless Quistor is looking forward to another year of success, strategic adaptations, and continued customer progress.   

Jack van de Brink

Do you have any questions or doubts? Please let us know.

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