I just returned from my, and Gartner’s, final Symposium of the year. Having visited with well over 100 technology providers over the last 6+weeks in Orlando, Barcelona, and Gold Coast; it is easy for me to say that the technology industry has a good future. Whether solving old problems in new ways or creating new business opportunities through innovation, it is clear that the future is bright for firms that focus on customers, address their critical needs or opportunities, and exceed their expectations.
A big theme at the Symposium series this year was Business Moments. Gartner introduced our ideas around Business Moments –transient opportunities that are exploited dynamically- last year, with increased focus and examples this year. Be cautious about your interpretation of “exploited”—this does not mean “take advantage of for the good of you and the detriment of someone else.” By exploited, we really mean an opportunity to use digital technologies to better serve our customers. There is a collection of research (and examples) on Business Moments on gartner.com (clients only).
This year, we linked Business Moments closely to the Digital Humanist Manifesto (see my earlier blog on this topic) as Business Moments are truly human moments. If we “exploit” them for our own good, then customers may revolt. We have to get the balance right.
But what does this mean for technology providers. It means a whole lot. Business Moments are a broad ranging opportunity.
The most interesting thing is that while a Business Moment is transient, the way we handle it often takes time. It some ways, it is like a fast moving car (like the picture below taken from the window of my hotel room in Sydney). The car is only in one spot for an instant—but it still has to get to a destination. Business Moments capture the instant, but require additional activities to get to the destination.
Business Moments will trigger a wide range of activities–things like notifying people, updating systems, kicking off processes, and more. It sounds an awful lot like business process management (BPM), and it certainly poses opportunities for the BPM crowd. It is also a great opportunity for the consulting and services community–as organizations seeking to capitalize on business moments will need helping putting together the systems to get it done. But there are many other opportunities hidden in those moments. Its up to providers to uncover them and help digital businesses. Human factors will be critical as ethnography (detailed observation of behavior)and the related customer experience design will be a critical skill to identify the most important business moments–and the key activities to follow.
Be looking for more on this topic, and how providers can help digital businesses in 2015.