Business and Technology Trends for 2021 - a Nordic view

Rolf Frydenberg, CEO, Partner, Manag-E Nordic AS | Thursday, January 21, 2021

2020 has been the “year of exceptions”, with the devastation brought by the pandemic and its direct and indirect effects on how we execute our business – what ever industry you’re in. 2021 will start off much the same – or even worse – but we can see a glimmer of light in the end of the tunnel, and it is not an express train heading towards us!

As an actor in the SaaS marketplace, with our solutions for enterprise service management, asset management, cloud management and automation, Manag-E Nordic is well positioned in multiple areas of high growth going forward. And we are less dependent on physical access to facilities (our own or our customers’) than many traditional IT-suppliers. This situation, of course, impacts our view of the future. But anyway, here are the top seven trends as we see them play out in 2021.

#1 The dominance of “as a Service” will keep growing. Even the most conservative of Nordic organizations – the Swedish public sector – will come to understand that you need a good reason to keep running software in your own premises; when the total cost is lower, let somebody else run it for you – in the cloud.

#2 IT will take more responsibility for delivering business services. IT organizations must bring its solutions and competence out of the datacenter and into the hands of the users. The demarcation line between what belongs to IT and what belongs to the business will be gone. Service Management, Asset Management and Cloud Management will not be IT solutions, but important components of the services of the enterprise.

#3 Projects will give way to products. The project with a start date, finish date and predefined expected results will disappear completely. Agile methodologies based on the concept of continuously improving on something that works in order to keep the business ahead of its competitors, will be the norm.

#4 New products will be part of a value chain built on continuous improvement. There will be no projects tasked with creating a product from a hundred-page requirements document, and no project teams that will work in isolation for years until they are “done”. Instead, the product team will bring out a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) within weeks, and continuously innovate and improve on that.

#5 You won’t need to build software; you can configure it instead. Low-code/no-code solutions exist and are becoming more powerful and more flexible. They will give you the ability to develop significant, new functionality without coding. And another major advantage of no-code: You can build an MVP in hours or minutes and then keep enhancing it, while users are active.

#6 Automation will be made a requirement, in all organizations. There is no significant productivity improvement without automation, we learned that in the industrial revolution. And now we’re in the fourth industrial revolution (also called Industry 4.0) and many people still need to learn it.

#7 The cloud is everywhere – welcome it! You may think that clouds are somewhere beyond the horizon, but they will not be much longer. Cloud will be near you, even in your datacenter. You will have to learn to manage it or lose control.

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