Atmosphere Inspires Edition 014

Sam Colyer

Atmosphere Inspires is our regular curation of news and views from the digital sphere; the lead stories that are affecting you and your business. In this edition we’re looking at how evolving digital trends are changing the landscape of the world as we know it: challenging business transparency, gender equality and ways of working, as well as encouraging growth and supporting new opportunities.

Stories catching our attention

Google to open up new AI business opportunities

Google's self training service Cloud AutoML is automating algorithms which could, in time, give businesses the opportunity to create and afford their own bespoke AI technology. Many businesses quite simply lack the funding to effectively evolve, but initiatives such as this could provide accessibility to previously out of reach technology and serve as a key driver in how quickly businesses can adopt and adapt to new ways of working.

Blockchain to encourage transparency for logistics industry

Quite rightly there's always pressure for companies to be open and honest with their customers. Staring with the logistics industry, Blockchain technology will act as a distruptor by looking to improve transparency and increase accountability. Greater transparency in business is not a new concept, both Trip Advisor and Glassdoor were onto it over a decade ago, but increasing expectations coupled with efficient technology leaves very little excuse for anything but integrity and honesty as we move forward.

What else is happening?

Why the technology sector needs more women

Insightful interview here on breaking down the barriers between women and technology with Pamela Maynard (Area President of Europe at Avanade). An important and relevant topic and there's a lot to say on it, but we like the discussion here about ensuring that processes and tools are in place for women to work flexibly (or men in an age of shared parental leave). It's all about supporting a contemporary culture across the bigger picture: leaders may want to review their infrastructure and governance in order to attract and retain women working in this industry.

The importance of the human function

The internet is awash with scaremongering articles around robots taking our jobs. It's helpful to keep a balanced view: Forbes provides one here by discussing how the human factor is key to business success in the digital age. There's no doubt about it, companies which are fearful and shy away from technology will be left behind. We believe that post digital will be a human movement; AI is seeking to replicate (not replace) human functions and so working alongside evolving technology to utilise everything it has to offer will be key.

Whatsapp reaches out to businesses

According to Whatsapp, over a billion people across 180 countries currently use its messenger platform to stay in touch. So perhaps it's not a surprise they've chosen now to launch an app for business. We're quite excited about this: it supports our belief that digital qualities should be celebrated: by encouraging people to come together and use social media to be.... well... more social(!) will result in an engaged and collaborative culture.

What's the reporting line for robots?

Interesting concept here debating the reporting lines for robots. Suggestion here is for them to report into HR: a department which is already set to be disrupted and repackaged as digital trends continue. We think it's important that businesses ensure their HR strategy is in line with the organisation’s transformation strategy: we're willing to bet that the majority of HR and IT departments are currently working entirely independently from one another and this has to change.

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