IDC Insights: Retail Industry Predictions for 2010

IDC Retail 2010 Predictions IDC held its "IDC Insights Predictions 2010: Retail" web briefing last Wednesday, January 13, 2010.  Leading the call were IDC Retail Insights analysts Leslie Hand, Ivano Ortis, and Group Vice President Bob Parker.

The conference call provided insights into current driving forces impacting retailers (including Sustainability, POS systems and RFID, and customer experience) and important IT investment trends for 2010 in the area of supply chain, demand planning, merchandising, and point-of-sale (POS) business initiatives.

Certainly, the economy had a big impact on retail in 2009 and that trend is expected to continue in 2010.  However, retail will begin emerging in 2010 with new business models and perhaps new industry leaders.

Here’s a summary of the 10 predictions IDC provided on the conference call.

  1. Growth Strategies:  IDC says that in 2010, retailers will seek growth strategies based on “Same Shopper” sales and first time buyers.
  2. New IT Investment Strategies:  IDC predicts retailers will launch aggressive technology investment programs to support new business models while reducing traditional IT costs.
  3. Getting More Value From Supply Chains:  Retailers will extract more value from their supply chains, responding adeptly to customer, supplier, and regulatory influences.
  4. Devil is in the Details:  IDC says that retailers reach nirvana where PLM information informs intelligent automation
  5. Customer Experience:  Retailers will focus on customer experience solutions convergence. CRM, SCM, and BI applications on a single source of demand information.
  6. Mobile Shopping:  IDC expects retailers will drive mobile consumer interaction and this will usher in the open shopping era.
  7. Demand Information To Drive Customer Loyalty:  Retailers will work on building customer intimacy and loyalty while improving brand performance.
  8. Harvesting Intelligence:  IDC says that in 2010, retail investment in demand intelligence and BI will be driven by a need to lower inventory costs and be more customer centric.
  9. Sustainability Initiatives:  IDC predicts retailers will build sustainable lean enterprises
  10. Social Commerce:  IDC cleverly states that traditional retailers are on the Titanic and the approaching iceberg is online social commerce.

The formal part of the call ended with the IDC team reviewing their four pillars of investment for retailers.  Here’s a summary of the four pillars.

  • Drive IT Infrastructure savings
  • Harvest Demand Intelligence
  • Drive Improved Customer Experience
  • Improve The Supply Network

The four pillars seem pretty obvious when I look at them…and you could make the case that those pillars have been important for decades and will still be important for many more decades to come.

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IDC Insights: Healthcare Top 10 Predictions for 2010

IDC Healthcare 2010 Predictions The IDC Healthcare Insights held its annual Healthcare predictions call for 2010 yesterday.   Scott Lundstrom, IDC Vice President of Research, led the call and brought in other analysts to cover the key trends by geography, by Payer/Provider, and sub-industries Life Sciences and Pharma.

Here’s my summary of the top ten predictions reviewed on the call:

  1. Business Intelligence:  IDC says this is the number one technology investment category
  2. Actionable Advice Will Lead Business Intelligence Priorities and Investment:  Demand for real-time and just-in-time information is growing to improve decision making
  3. Legislative and Regulatory Compliance Initiatives: IDC expects this to be among the top 3 tech investment categories in 2010
  4. Days of Following the Hype Will Be Over: Firms will focus on ROI and value in selection criteria
  5. 2010 Will Be the Year of the EMR: IDC says to expect unprecedented levels of activity in the EMR/EHR application market.
  6. Health Information Exchanges:  IDC says that meaningful use requirements will fuel investment in HIE technologies
  7. Medical Home Best Practices Will Emerge:  IDC expects pilots will drive the documentation of best practices for the emerging medical home market.
  8. Cost As A Function Of Delivered Benefit:  Value in the drug access and pricing equation will begin to significantly impact drug makers in the U.S.
  9. Research Moved To The Cloud:   Major Pharmaceutical companies will move significant amounts of their discovery research IT infrastructure to the cloud
  10. Pharmaceutical IT Spending on Aggregate Promotional Spend Compliance Will Surge:  Demand for IT software and services focused on monitoring aggregate spend compliance will continue to grow at a quick pace.

Healthcare IT has been heating up for a number of years.  There are many, many reasons why it has been slow to take off.  The move to electronic medical records is a key trend that will help enable the transformation of all the inefficient systems in the healthcare system.  When that is complete, then the business intelligence initiatives will pay off considerably. 

I can’t wait for a better healthcare IT system to be in place!  Unfortunately the true potential of a better healthcare IT system will not be realized for a number of years.

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Forrester’s Top 15 Technology Trends For Enterprise Architects To Watch

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Last month, Forrester published a report The Top 15 Technology Trends EA Should Watch that listed 15 technologies with the greatest potential for business impact over the next three years.   The report was presented on a November 4 conference call by two Forrester VPs, Alex Cullen and Gene Leganza. 

Forrester opened up the presentation by discussing the reasons why companies need to monitor new and changing technologies.  Simply said, IT organizations need to understand how changes in technology will impact IT and business operations, both short-term and long-term.

To come up with the list of 15 technologies, Forrester used three criteria during the selection process.

  • Impact on the Business and/or IT Operating Model
  • Newness of the Technology, which translates into lack of understanding/experience
  • Complexity of the Technology, which can minimize ability to leverage the technology or can translate into risk of failure

Forrester grouped the list of 15 into five major themes.  Here is the list of 15 below.

Theme No. 1: Social Computing In And Around The Enterprise.  The social computing trend will have a huge impact on business…as it is having in our personal lives

    1. Collaboration platforms become people-centric
    2. Customer community platforms integrate with business apps
    3. Tele-presence gains widespread use

Theme No. 2: Process-Centric Data And Intelligence.  This theme emphasizes the shift from batch analytics to real-time business analytics.

    1. Business Intelligence goes real-time
    2. Master data management matures
    3. Data quality services become real-time

Theme No. 3: Restructured IT Service Platforms.  This theme is about providing greater scalability and flexibility while reducing support costs.

    1. Sass Will be ubiquitous for packaged apps
    2. Cloud-based platforms become standard infrastructure- and platform-as-a-service
    3. Client virtualization is ubiquitous

Theme No. 4: Agile And Fit-To-Purpose Applications.  This theme signals that improving a firm's application flexibility is getting easier for EAs

    1. Business rules processing moves to the mainstream
    2. BPM will be the Web-2.0-enabled
    3. Policy-based SOA becomes predominant
    4. Security will be data-and content-based

Theme No. 5: Mobile As The New Desktop.   During the next three years, mobile computing will expand dramatically as a business platform.

    1. Apps and business processes go mobile
    2. Mobile networks and devices gain more power

The list above (especially the themes) really hit home with me.  I like the list and plan on using this list as input into my 2010 Trends report I'll be delivering in January.

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