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  • Inflection Point MSP Ltd
    7 Unity Street,
    Bristol
    BS1 5HH

    New Technology Trends for 2023 That You Must be Ready For

    As we enter the new year, businesses are looking for ways to stay ahead of the curve and stay competitive in an ever-evolving market. As an IT managed service provider, we have a unique perspective on the trends that are shaping the industry and what to do to help small businesses accelerate in the coming year. The rise of Digital Transformation has been steadily growing over the past few years, and it shows no sign of slowing down. For SMEs in particular, being prepared for the new technology trends of 2023 is essential for success and growth. In this article, I will discuss the most important tech trends that you should be ready for in 2023.

    2022 has seen many technology trends become household terms; cryptocurrencies, blockchain, virtual reality and the metaverse are regularly heard being talked about outside of technical circles. Many business leaders are embracing new technology and leveraging automation as well as cloud computing for their small businesses, and this is going to increase into 2023. The increased costs of running a business will mean a push to drive more efficiencies by using emerging technologies to create new ways of working. Connectivity will play an ever increasing role in the way we all do business, remote working relies upon ever increasing internet speeds, so 5G will be crucial for hybrid working and maintaining access to our digital world.

    Inflection Point has been at the cutting edge of digital technologies for a long time, and we are always testing the latest technology trends as part of our digital transformation initiatives. Whether it is deploying StarLink internet for a rural customer site, or working with Gartner to review which trends in 2023 to focus upon, we are at the forefront of technology innovation.

    Remote Working

    Remote working has been here for a while now, but many small businesses are yet to fully embrace it. More and more companies are making the switch to remote working, so it’s no surprise that this new way of doing business has become a major topic of conversation. Remote working is becoming increasingly popular as businesses strive to keep their employees happy and from looking at jumping ship. "The Great Resignation" still strikes fear in the heart of many small and medium sized business owners, so providing more flexible working is one way to help employees get more from staying where they are.

    Once a business embraces this change the benefits of remote working are numerous, with its supporters pointing out that people can work from any location with an internet connection. It also opens up opportunities for hybrid-working models which allow different departments and teams to collaborate in real-time from different locations. This can be enabled through Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) and cloud computing services, both of which provide secure access to corporate networks or documents stored in the cloud.

    This does open up some potential negatives though, Hybrid Working does tend to shift the hours in which some people work. Remote workers do tend to change from the typical 9 to 5 and instead some begin to start work earlier, or opt to work later into the evening, freeing up blocks of time in their day to be their for their family.

    We have seen this accelerate a need for us to move to a 247 model for our support services, so that we can be their when our customers need us. Out of hours support used to be in emergencies only, but they have now become the norm. At Inflection Point I have taken the decision to move our support desk to a full 247, 365 operation so that we are there when our customers need us.

    Sustainable Technology

    As the tech world continues to advance, it's no surprise that sustainability will become more prevalent in 2023. Sustainable technology is all about creating and using products that are as eco-friendly as possible. This includes everything from energy efficient appliances and lightbulbs to renewable solar energy sources. It's all part of the growing movement to reduce our environmental impact, and we're seeing more companies make sustainability a priority in their business plans as they move to new energy solutions.

    Renewable energy sources like solar panels or wind turbines can provide an alternative source of electricity, while water conservation systems help reduce water waste. Even small lifestyle changes, such as switching to LED light bulbs or buying recycled materials for home improvement projects can have a big impact on reducing our carbon footprint. Our manufacturing customers are looking for ways to reduce their energy costs and become less reliant on the grid, so solar is an easy choice.

    At Inflection Point we do our bit by planting a tree every time a customer gives us a Customer Satisfaction score. Every time a customer closes a ticket they receive an opportunity to give us a score, by using process automation this automatically plants a tree using our sustainability partner, Ecologi.

    We are also installing solar panels to offset the electricity we use.

    Artificial Intelligence

    Artificial Intelligence (AI) is transforming the way businesses operate and interact with their customers. It's no surprise that AI has become a powerful tool for streamlining business processes, enhancing customer engagement and driving innovation. With its ability to automate mundane tasks (such as planting a tree for every CSAT score we receive), AI can help companies take advantage of new opportunities and increase efficiency. Artificial Intelligence will become far more integrated into our lives, and AI technology like ChatGPT will revolutionise Customer Services by automating business processes such as interpreting applications and providing customer support.

     

    What is ChatGPT, and why does it matter?

    ChatGPT is the latest in artificial intelligence (AI) technology, and it's shaking up the customer service industry. Developed by OpenAI, ChatGPT is a natural language processing (NLP) tool that can respond to customer queries in an efficient and engaging manner. Using AI-powered algorithms, ChatGPT mimics real conversations with customers to provide them with accurate information quickly. 
     

    Chatbots for Customer Service Support

    This advanced technology brings many benefits to customers and businesses alike. For customers, they no longer need to wait for human agents to answer their questions; ChatGPT's AI-driven responses are available 24/7 at lightning speed. Businesses also benefit from using this technology as they can decrease their customer service costs while still providing quality support services. 
     
    ChatGPT is revolutionising the way businesses interact with their customers—and it'll only continue getting better from here!
     

    What is Machine Learning, and how does it work?

    Machine learning is an exciting field of artificial intelligence that allows computers to learn and improve over time. It's a type of technology that processes huge amounts of data, then uses what it has learned to make decisions or predictions. 
     
    Machine learning works by using algorithms. Algorithms are a set of instructions for the computer to follow in order to solve a problem or complete a task. The algorithm looks at the data, makes a prediction and then checks its accuracy against known results from the input data. If it’s correct, the computer continues on with its predictions; if not, it adjusts its parameters and tries again. This process repeats until the algorithm finds an acceptable level of accuracy for its predictions.

     

    Machine learning technology is the backbone of AI applications, allowing for more sophisticated decision-making capabilities than ever before. From recognising faces and objects to natural language processing, machine learning helps to create a smart environment that can respond quickly and accurately to various user input. Additionally, Robotic Process Automation (RPA) allows businesses to automate repetitive tasks such as data entry or customer service interactions. By automating many tedious processes, RPA frees up employees’ time for more important work like developing strategies or engaging with customers.

    This is an area we are invested heavily in and our Digital Innovation workshops can help you find new ways to leverage this technology within your own business.

    When it comes to the our manufacturing and construction customers, digital twins are a key focal point. A digital twin is a virtual model of an object or system that uses data from its physical counterpart to create a hyper-realistic representation of itself in real time. This allows for a better understanding of how modifying certain components or parameters affects the overall performance and behavior of the system.
     
    Digital twins have been around for some time now and their popularity has been increasing rapidly in recent years as businesses look for ways to increase efficiency and reduce costs associated with production. By using data collected from traditional systems such as sensors, IoT devices, 3D models, etc., digital twins can give companies an unprecedented level of insight into their operations so they can make more informed decisions quickly and accurately. By using augmented reality businesses will be able to simulate business operations without the huge costs of building something in the physical world.
     
    As more and more data flows from the real world into the virtual world we will see manufacturing become more efficient and innovative. 2023 will be the year we start to see the construction industry fully embrace these emerging technology trends and new jobs will be created.
     
    Some of these emerging tech trends are yet to reach all sectors, but we are seeing more and more of our construction clients focus upon innovation. As more data is collected I believe we will see the internet of things reach the building site in a big way. IOT technology could really drive a business model change, especially as consumers expect better sustainability and transparency.
     

    Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies

    Blockchain technology is one of the most revolutionary software developments of our time. It is a digital ledger that contains records of transactions, and those records are distributed among computers on a decentralised network. This means that all data is stored in multiple locations, making it virtually impossible to hack and tamper with.
     
    Blockchain has been used to develop cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin and Ethereum; however, now governments are looking into using blockchain for Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDC). This is unlikely to become widespread until 2030.
     
    These digital versions of traditional currencies offer many advantages such as faster transactions, more secure payments, and greater transparency and they could also open up exciting new opportunities for people around the world who struggle with access to banking services. 
     
    We don't expect to see much change in this space until at least 2025, but it is definitely a trend to watch. Technologies like the Metaverse are where we are likely to see supply chains adopt digital currencies first. New technological business opportunities are likely to present themselves to consumers first coming from the big tech companies where they are already using this. But smaller businesses will need to to think of software solutions to enable business innovation in this space to entice customers who are already used to paying for things digitally and spending on the internet.
     

    Cyber Security

    The world of cybersecurity is ever-changing and increasingly important. February 2022 saw the invasion of Ukraine and a huge spike of malware and automated hacking bots. One of the biggest challenges for small businesses will be how to continue to stay secure online.
     
    As connected devices become more commonplace, it’s essential that we all understand the basics of information security. After all, with all the incredible benefits that come with our technology, there are also risks. Companies are already using Next Generation AV (NGAV) but we need to look at security much more holistically. AI and machine learning will play an increasing role in keeping our customers secure online - we are implementing new email and endpoint security across all our customers.
     
    2023 will see more small businesses embrace Security Awareness Training, and help staff protect against social engineering exploits. Hardware and Software is probably easier to secure than the people we have working with us. It is important that we educate and up-skill the entire workforce so that we can improve security across the board.
     
    Holistic Cybersecurity is one way to help protect yourself against hackers and malicious activities online. It involves taking measures such as encrypting data, installing firewalls, and regularly patching vulnerabilities in order to make sure your information is secure. Keeping up with the latest trends in cybersecurity is a good way to stay ahead of potential risks and ensure that your devices remain safe from attack, we will be running monthly workshops to help our customers throughout 2023 and beyond.