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Digital Technology and Cognitive Systems Transforming Workplace

October 2016


NEW YORK (September 29, 2016)—According to a new report by Forbes Insights, in association with IBM, “The Digital Workplace in the Cognitive Era—Positioning for the Future: Intelligent IT for the Anytime, Anywhere Workforce,” there is a tectonic shift under way in how we work. We expect the same kind of intuitive, tactile experience with our workplace technology that we now take for granted with our smartphones, tablets and gaming systems. Perhaps the most dramatic change comes from the potential for cognitive support to combine intelligence and sentiment for a true sense-and-respond experience. Cognitive systems will change the workplace in ways we haven’t yet imagined. The workplace may soon incorporate virtual reality tools and wearable devices, all connected to a cognitive platform.

There is no question that technology gives us more choices and better tools. Yet what most of us want is less complexity and, if we are paying for it, lower costs. Planning for the workplace of the future means striking the right balance between finding the right tools for each user today and accessing an infrastructure that can expand with the intelligence and the power of the technology of the future.

“The digital workplace presents an opportunity to enhance the work experience for employees and promote data-driven decision making across a company,” said Bruce Rogers, Chief Insights Officer at Forbes Media. “It also allows you to leverage an organization’s talent through cognitive technology.”

Key points include:

  • The digital workplace merges work and life—a virtual space with applications, services and information on demand. For users, this means access to the technology they need, when they need it, on whichever device they prefer to use.
  • Employees expect their enterprise systems to be as engaging, exciting and intuitive as consumer devices. Technology research company Gartner calls this a shift from technology-literate people to people-literate technology.
  • Companies now have more exquisitely detailed data about how their products and services are used than they ever had before, thanks to a vast network of sensors and advanced analytic tools.
  • Cognitive systems can parse all that data and learn what employees need to do their job better—even if they don’t yet know it themselves. Cognitive systems will deliver the ability to visualize vast amounts of data, curated and analyzed, for a unique task and a unique user.
  • The workplace of the future will embrace emerging new cognitive and analytic capabilities. These tools can provide insights into how employees engage most effectively, what the best technologies are for each task and each individual, and help provide a seamless work environment—an environment that will help to attract and retain the best talent.
  • Success in the growing mobile, digital world requires a deliberate business and IT strategy that allows you to provide cognitive capabilities that set your digital experience apart every time in the context of the moment. When businesses design around this revolution, instead of simply accommodating it, whole industries can shift.

About this research

For this report, Forbes Insights interviewed a number of senior executives and experts to explore the promise and possibilities of the digital workplace.



This article was written by Forbes Corporate Communications from Forbes and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

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