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The year of digital disruption: Looking ahead to 2016

Ang Thiam Guan, Managing Director, Singapore & Brunei, Cisco | Jan. 11, 2016
In 2015, we saw Singapore loudly affirm its commitment to become a Smart Nation, as well as the Internet of Things growing from a proof-of-concept to a business reality. 2016 is shaping up to be a year of digital disruption, and organisations must not only adopt a new outlook on business and technology, as well as the impending wave of business digitisation.

This vendor-written piece has been edited by Executive Networks Media to eliminate product promotion, but readers should note it will likely favour the submitter's approach.

A new year represents a time of change - fresh challenges in the year ahead and lessons learned from the past year. 2016 will be a year of digital disruption for Singaporean businesses as the Internet of Things (IoT) and digitisation come to the forefront, and we saw the first ripples of this sea change in 2015.

Success in the new year will depend on organisations understanding the technological developments happening in 2015, embracing a new way of digital thinking, and addressing the challenges of disruption ahead.

New developments in 2015 herald the wave of digitisation

2015 was a year when the Internet of Everything (IoE) and Smart Cities became realistic and achievable, instead of proofs of concepts. While the Internet enabled the exchange of digital information, connected devices now allow for practical, real-world applications for the data and to make informed decisions.

There is much excitement about the way people will live and work in the near future, from Smart Homes where temperature, lighting, security and power use can be monitored and controlled, to the vision of a Smart Nation where public services like transportation, education and tax services will be easily accessible and available online.

A new digital mind set for organisations in 2016

An organisation's most important asset is its people. Technology enables collaboration and engagement with employees, but what is critical to stand the test of time is an innovative mind-set and skills that make the workforce adaptable and motivated to try new things.

Offices today comprise a quad-generational workforce spanning Baby Boomers, Generation X, Millennials and Generation Z, each with their own unique motivation, values and working styles. One size will never fit all. Catering to both the new and old ways of working and motivation is important to ensure employee engagement, which will lead to higher productivity and profitability, as well as lower turnover and fewer safety incidents.

The culture of work needs to evolve from where you GO to what you DO. Building trust, flexibility to work from anywhere and at any time, while being diverse and inclusive brings tangible benefits in productivity, efficiency and cost savings. Having an engaged and committed team is priceless.

A digital vortex of disruption in 2016

2015 was the inflection point for the Internet of Things (IoT) and digitisation. Leaders from around the world convened in Dubai for the Internet of Things World Forum recently and witnessed real solutions that are now fundamentally changing the way we will live and do business. It's a dramatic change that will touch everyone.


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