Authors: Jim Lundy, David Mario Smith Date: February 11, 2014
Topic: Workplace Research Note Number: 2014-04
Issue: What are the technologies and architectures that enterprises should leverage in the workplace?
Issue: What are the macro trends impacting the evolution of work?
Aragon Research introduces its 2014 Technology Arc for the Workplace. This second annual edition features 8 new technology profiles and updates to 28 others.
This is our second edition of the Aragon Research Technology Arc™ for the Workplace. It helps you identify important technologies, choose the ones to monitor, and determine their potential benefits. It also adds extra dimensions that help you decide when, why and how you should adopt them.
The technology landscape in the workplace is picking up steam. Rapid change is occurring, and new categories of applications are emerging that reflect a shift from pure technology to business applications that embody business logic and enable specific business processes.
The 2014 Technology Arcs feature new classes of application that either extend or replace an existing category due to enterprise needs, or focus on specific tasks in the business. We refer to these as business applications. An example is predictive lead scoring, which uses analytics to score inbound sales leads automatically.
Technology is changing and in 2014, technology is shifting to focus on both IT and business user needs. As such it’s important to understand the significance and probable impact of emerging technologies. This means assessing the maturity and suitability of the entire technical domain in question before making decisions about specific products or services.
The Technology Arc for the Workplace reviews the key technologies and products that most people use in the workplace. It encompasses three sequential maturity arcs: emerge, adopt and mature.
The Emerge Arc starts when the technology first appears outside of a pure research environment. Commercial pilots and first-generation products appear in the early part of this cycle, followed by the growth of the market that includes the technology. Generally, this phase lasts 1-3 years.
In the Adopt Arc a technology starts to be accepted as a product category and included in a general marketplace of similar products. The first 30 to 50 percent of this arc is considered an early adoption phase.
Many enterprises wait to see what others are doing with a technology before they try it. Social networks are a good example. While many companies have not adopted social networks enterprise-wide, enough have tried them to give the technology a track record and a reputation. As market activity increases, more users start pilots so they can learn to leverage the technology as their peers have. The demand attracts multiple vendors with a variety of approaches, price points and feature sets, which in turn drives further adoption. As a result of this activity, social networks advanced from about 50% to about 75% on the Adopt Arc between the 2013 and 2014 Workplace Technology Arcs.
As technologies mature, the pace of change generally slows and progress becomes incremental. Often, the most significant opportunity in this phase is to gain efficiency through lower cost, while the dramatic functional gains of the Emerge phase become infrequent.
Some enterprises wait for maturation before attempting to deploy. These late adopters are often holding back for cost reasons. The trade-off is that by waiting, transformative opportunities that could have been captured sooner are delayed, along with the potential ROI. However, enterprises with a conservative adoption culture often wait for the technology to mature before implementing, which can save costs. Another trade-off in using this late adopter approach is that some competitors may not wait.
This Technology Arc is part of our archived research. Read our latest digital workplace coverage to get the most up to date insights.