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Smart companies that fully leverage a highly skilled “liquid” workforce and create custom-built platforms will win in today’s digital economy, according to the Technology Vision 2016 Report from Accenture.

In the report, Accenture identifies five technology trends:

  1. Continuing rise of the liquid workforce – Of the IT and business executives surveyed for the report, a “deep expertise for the specialised task at hand” was one of the most important characteristics they looked for. Couple this with the results from an Intuit report in August of 2015 predicted 43% of the US workforce will be freelancers in 2020.

  2. Intelligent automation – True visionaries use intelligent automation to create a new digital world where they are masters of their own competitive advantage. According to the report 70% of executives are making significantly more investments in AI than in 2013.

  1. Platform economy – The report suggests that the successful business leaders are unleashing the power of technology by developing platform-based product that have been customised to support the specific needs of the business. 81% of the executives surveyed say platform-based business models will be core to their growth strategy within the next three years.

  1. Predictable disruption – Previous technology disruptions were often unpredictable but now enterprises have the line of sight to track the growing ecosystems and anticipate their impacts. 82% say industry boundaries are being erased and new paradigms are emerging for every industry.

  1. Digital trust – To gain the trust of individuals, ecosystems and regulators in the digital economy, businesses must possess strong security and ethics at each stage of the customer journey. New products and services must be ethical and secure by design. Digital and data ethics are now becoming more frequent  topics of boardroom conversations.

For the report, Accenture surveyed more than 3,000 business and IT executives across 11 countries and 12 industries to capture insights into the adoption of emerging technologies.

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