It has been on the cards for some time and the proverbial writing has been on the wall: In 2017, the so-called ‘nexus of forces’ will impact business operations in a major way – and companies will either be ready or go out of business. That is the reality facing all industries today says Ernest Kleynhans, MD of local specialist software and IT services provider Assimilated Information Systems Pty Ltd. (AIS).

Kleynhans acknowledges that 2016 was a challenging and volatile year, and it is really challenging to make any predictions with any level of certainty. However, he does believe 2017 will be the year where connectivity will make all the difference, where undersea fibre cable systems and last mile connectivity will truly count.

“Most businesses have already begun with the migration to digital, transforming their core systems and leveraging technology like the cloud, big data, analytics and the Internet of Things. This transformation will become more and more entrenched in the future,” says Kleynhans.

2017 is likely to be a land-mark year for service providers and solution developers. If they keep ahead of the growth curve, tailor their offerings and engage the market effectively, there is little to stop them from capitalising off digital transformation and the rollout of third platform technologies.

The AIS MD says that spin-off results of this convergence of technology is the advent of M2M (machine-to-machine) connectivity, the widespread integration of sensors and the opportunity to benefit from the multitude of connected ‘things’.

According to Kleynhans, businesses will increasingly adopt the hybrid cloud model to streamline ICT infrastructure management and ensure cost efficiency, as well as take heed of Artificial Intelligence (AI) as influences like robotics, smart technology and platforms grow in significance and are applied at various levels of society.

“Make no mistake, 2017 is going to be a game-changer, to coin a very over-used expression, but it will be… businesses, no matter what focus or direction, or size for that matter, will have the same opportunity and this coming year can be the make or break for most operations, depending on their digital transformation strategy,” he adds.

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