As the new year draws closer, our minds are turning to what is in store for 2019.

Over 2018, we have seen the continued emergence of automation that extends into every aspect of a business — from finances to supply chain to customer service to marketing and more.

Machine learning and digital transformation are the way of the future, but how exactly will that play out? Here are our predictions.

  1. DDMRP will replace business forecasting.

DDMRP, demand driven material requirements planning, has some major advantages over traditional forecasting. It’s shown to be more accurate, cost-effective, and can significantly reduce lead time. We predict in 2019 more businesses will embrace demand planning.

  1. Predictive analytics will become more important.

Similarly, as business data collection becomes automated and analyzed more frequently, more businesses will be turning towards predictive analytics for their decision making.

  1. Supply chain automation.

AI technology is changing the supply chain. For instance, Ocado Group, a grocery delivery service in the U.K., has machines that pack food for delivery. These machines can even go into subzero temperatures to retrieve frozen food. This will allow for quicker production, improved delivery times, and less human vulnerabilities.

  1. On-demand service.

As supply chain management changes, so does the consumer demand. Many customers want products and services delivered as quickly as possible. For instance, many grocers are looking at one-hour delivery service for the year ahead. This will extend to other industries — pushing for more speed and more revenue.

  1. Knowledge bases for resource scaling.

In a shifting economy, many businesses have hard choices to make when it comes to staffing. They don’t want to have too many resources during slow seasons, but they also don’t want to be caught short-staffed when it gets busy.

This is where resource scaling comes in. We predict that in 2019 more businesses will be looking to outsource certain activities, such as customer service, or embrace automation technology that scales it for you.

  1. Increasingly integrated BI systems.

Business intelligence software will become more embedded in established workflows. For instance, application programming interfaces will allow for data analysis within a user’s existing system. Integration abilities will also expand, offering third-party functionality from within.

  1. Mobile analytics.

In the past, many mobile business solutions only replicated the desktop experience, which wasn’t that useful. But for 2019, look for increased ways to deliver analytics on mobile. With business operating remotely, accessing KPIs on-the-go will need to stay relevant and be accessible from anywhere.

  1. Natural language.

Natural language queries (NLQs) have become popular in recent years, but that will increase even more as voice searches become the norm. With items on the market like Google Home, Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri, and Microsoft’s Cortana, voice-based searches are on the horizon for consumers and for businesses.

  1. Multi-cloud strategy.

Data security has been a priority for businesses moving to the cloud. 2018 introduced a multi-cloud strategy where companies have hybrid storage models. For instance, sensitive data might be stored on a private cloud or a local server on the company’s premises, while other data is stored in a shared or public cloud.

Some technology providers are offering the ability to join data from multiple cloud sources together in one dashboard or one process, no matter where it resides.

  1. AI and deep learning will replace machine learning.

Gartner predicts that artificial intelligence and deep learning techniques will replace traditional machine learning as the most common approach for new applications of data science by the year 2023. We’re seeing examples of this already in chatbot technology and other areas, but we predict this will expand even more during the next year.

  1. Need for a human touch.

Paradoxically, as there is more automation everywhere, we predict that the requirement for human interpretation and interaction will start to increase. There is so much technology available now, how do you make sense of it all? And what is the right technology for your business? In high-touch industries, such as services, it is critical that the technology support the humans and not replace them or get in the way of delivering customer service.

What business intelligence trends do you think 2019 will bring? TGO Consulting can help you navigate whatever comes your way. We offer business solutions for cloud management, BI, financial systems, and much more.

Contact us today. Call (905) 470 6830 or visit www.tgo.ca.