Kiwi businesses are due to be faced with a range of exciting digital opportunities and Spark Digital CEO, Jolie Hodson is encouraging Kiwi businesses to think about how their business can gain edge both locally and globally in 2018.
Internet of Things (IoT) to deliver meaningful outcomes for business
IoT will transition from hype to reality. Spark will deploy first-to-market improved nationwide high-quality IoT networks - LTE Cat-M1 (M1) and LoRa. M1 will run on Spark’s core 4G network and is ideal when sensors and devices are transferring large amounts of data regularly. For example, telematics or smart cities applications such as lighting and environmental monitoring. LoRa will allow businesses and local councils to gather real-time insight into the infrastructure New Zealand cities operate on, including waterways, traffic lights and machinery. In addition to improved networks, 2018 will pave the way for a mature ecosystem of devices and platforms – enabling IoT to be utilised as a commercial product for businesses across New Zealand.
Security strategy crucial year on year
Security is an area that is constantly on the move; the attacks used against corporations are always shifting, therefore the way in which we defend and respond is constantly evolving too. Whilst defences are continuously being created to identify and remediate attacks, new attack vectors are evolving which make an overarching security strategy as well as a defence in depth posture critical for all organisations.
Each year attacks like the Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) and ransomware continues to become more prevalent. A DDoS attack is where a hacker overloads the server and prevents someone from accessing its machine or network by sending an overwhelming amount of unwanted traffic. Ransomware works similar to a kidnapping crime, except instead of a person it’s your organisation’s sensitive data kept hostage. Both have been around for years however we will see these attacks becoming more common year on year as they perfect their delivery techniques and organisations become more dependent on digital technologies to operate.
The best thing organisations should do is rethink security as a service; it shouldn’t be treated as an afterthought once your data has been compromised, but rather work to have an active security strategy that keeps your organisation and your client’s information safe.
Resiliency and diversity in cloud
Cloud is now centrepiece to the digital era as its capability set deepens and broadens. Multi-cloud strategies will continue to emerge as businesses seek to get the best and broadest value possible from their respective cloud assets and utilisation. The cost of cloud will become less of a focus as businesses have started to realise that cloud deployment offers multifaceted returns on investment when used cleverly. New technology-sets like Blockchain will continue to demonstrate applicability to business in 2018 and begin to materialise as part of day-to-day cloud services. More integration combinations and combined innovation efforts with Data Insights, AI, IoT and security will see cloud continue to invigorate the New Zealand economy.
More customer automation and self service
Customer support is crucial, but it can also be time constraining and costly. As we head into 2018 tasks that are manual and repetitive will be increasingly automated so that support experiences that do require human contact can be delivered efficiently and effectively. For example, Spark will be offering automated, portal-based information for customers in 2018, so rather than waiting for written reports that are out of date by the time they are written and delivered, customers will be able to log in to access real-time data on dashboards. Another element of self-service Spark will be offering is the ability to buy and consume products without having to go through a human-based sales representative. Simply by logging in, a customer will be able to purchase and use a range of new services with a few simple clicks.