Top Strategic Technology Trends for 2022

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    The technology trends that will drive growth, scale digitalization and act as force multipliers over the next three to five years 

    In 2022, CEOs have three priorities: growth, digitalization and efficiency. The past 18 months have accelerated the need for digital technologies, and organizations need to adapt more quickly to ever-changing conditions. 

    The Gartner top strategic technology trends are key to delivering on your CEO’s priorities. Each trend provides a competitive edge, and they build on and reinforce one another. 

    These are not simply technologies, they are a strategic roadmap to differentiating your organization from your peers over the next three to five years. These technology trends fulfill business objectives and position CIOs and IT executives as strategic partners in the organization. 

    “CEOs know they must accelerate the adoption of digital business in the new world and are seeking more direct digital routes to connect with their customers,” says David Groombridge, VP Analyst, Gartner. “But with an eye on future economic risks, they also want to be efficient and protect margins and cash flow.”

    The twelve technology trends fall under three main themes

    Engineering Trust: Technologies in this segment create a more resilient and efficient IT foundation by ensuring data is integrated and processed more securely across cloud and non-cloud environments, to deliver cost-efficient scaling of the IT foundation.

    Sculpting Change: By releasing the creative new-technology solutions in this area, you can scale and accelerate your organization’s digitalization. These technology trends allow you to respond to the increasing pace of change by creating applications more rapidly to automate business activities, optimize artificial intelligence (AI) and enable quicker, smarter decisions.

    Accelerating Growth: By capitalizing on strategic technology trends in this segment, you’re unleashing IT force multipliers that will win business and market share. Together, these trends enable you to maximize value creation and enhance digital capabilities.

    Top Strategic Technology Trends for 2022: data fabric, cybersecurity mesh, privacy-enhancing computation, cloud-native platforms, composable applications, decision intelligence, hyperautomation, AI engineering, distributed enterprise, total experience, autonomic systems, and generative AI

    This year’s list features twelve top technology trends

    Trend 1: Data Fabric

    Data fabric provides a flexible, resilient integration of data sources across platforms and business users, making data available everywhere it’s needed regardless where the data lives.

    The true business value of data fabric exists in its ability to use analytics to learn and actively recommend where data should be used and changed. This can reduce data management efforts by up to 70%.

    Trend 2: Cybersecurity Mesh

    Cybersecurity mesh is a flexible, composable architecture that integrates widely distributed and disparate security services. Cybersecurity mesh enables best-of-breed, stand-alone security solutions to work together to improve overall security while moving control points closer to the assets they’re designed to protect. It can quickly and reliably verify identity, context and policy adherence across cloud and noncloud environments.

    Trend 3: Privacy-Enhancing Computation 

    Privacy-enhancing computation secures the processing of personal data in untrusted environments. Evolving privacy and data protection laws as well as growing consumer concerns are driving this trend, which utilizes a variety of privacy-protection techniques to allow value to be extracted from data while meeting compliance requirements.  

    Trend 4: Cloud-Native Platforms 

    Cloud-native platforms are technologies that allow you to build new application architectures that are resilient, elastic and agile — enabling you to respond to rapid digital change. This improves on the traditional lift-and-shift approach to cloud, which fails to take advantage of the benefits of cloud and adds complexity to maintenance. 

    Trend 5: Composable Applications

    Composable applications are built from business-centric modular components, making it easier to use and reuse code, accelerating the time to market for new software solutions and releasing enterprise value.

    Trend 6: Decision Intelligence 

    Decision intelligence is a practical approach to improve organizational decision making. It models each decision as a set of processes, using intelligence and analytics to inform, learn from and refine decisions. Decision intelligence can support and augment human decision making and, potentially, automate it through the use of augmented analytics, simulations and AI.

    Trend 7: Hyperautomation 

    Hyperautomation is a disciplined, business-driven approach to rapidly identify, vet and automate as many business and IT processes as possible — enabling scalability, remote operation and business model disruption.

    Trend 8: AI Engineering 

    AI engineering aims to optimize the value of production AI solutions by automating updates to data, models and applications to streamline AI delivery. Combined with strong AI governance, it will operationalize the delivery of AI to ensure its ongoing business value. 

    Trend 9: Distributed Enterprises

    Distributed enterprises reflect a digital-first, remote-first business model to improve remote employee experiences, digitalize consumer and partner touchpoints, and build out product experiences. An increase in remotely located employees and consumers is growing demand for virtual services and hybrid workplaces. 

    Trend 10: Total Experience 

    Total experience is a business strategy that integrates employee experience, customer experience, user experience and multiexperience across multiple touchpoints to accelerate growth. The goal of total experience is to drive greater customer and employee confidence, satisfaction, loyalty and advocacy, through holistic management of stakeholder experiences.

    Trend 11: Autonomic Systems 

    Autonomic systems are self-managed physical or software systems that learn from their environments and dynamically modify their own algorithms in real time to optimize their behavior in complex ecosystems. This creates an agile set of technology capabilities, able to support new requirements and situations, optimize performance and defend against attacks without human intervention.

    Trend 12: Generative AI

    Generative AI learns about artifacts from data, and generates innovative new creations that are similar to the original but don’t repeat it. This technology has the potential to create new forms of creative content like videos or writing and accelerate R&D cycles in fields ranging from medicine to product creation.

    How to use the trends to drive digital business

    The top strategic technology trends will accelerate digital capabilities and drive growth. These trends solve common business challenges for CIOs and technology executives to help provide better security, more insightful data and analytics, and even create entirely new innovations. 

    As an example, we show how Generative AI, cybersecurity mesh and decision intelligence will drive strategic changes for CIOs:

    Commonly asked questions about strategic technology trends

    How are the Gartner top strategic technology trends selected? 

    The top technology trends are selected on the basis of CEOs’ priorities for their organizations and the resulting technology demands that flow down to CIOs and IT leaders.

    How can organizations use the list of top technologies?

    CIOs and IT executives should use these trends to analyze how their organizations need to evolve their implementation and technology adoptions over the next three to five years.

    How will the technology trends impact the business?

    Organizations that adopt and plan for these trends will create long-term roadmaps for reliant and sustainable business growth.

    How will these innovations affect organizations in the long term?

    Some of these innovations represent underpinning technical capabilities required to compete in a digital world, while others provide business-oriented capabilities to step ahead of the competition.

    How can we best identify candidate technologies and trends in support of operational resilience and business model change?

    IT leaders are ideally placed to determine whether trends and disruptions are a threat or an opportunity. They can realize enterprise change by leveraging their knowledge of business and technology to understand the impact of trends on their organizations.

    How can we fuse the assessment of emerging technologies within the broader context of nontechnology trends and consider the wider political, economic, social, legal and environmental trends?

    The Gartner TAPESTRE analysis provides a framework for assessing all types of trends, allowing IT leaders to integrate an understanding of wider impacts into their technology planning.

    What are the most impactful strategic and emerging technology trends?

    For different organizations, different trends will impact in different ways. With a tight integration between most of the trends, varying combinations of technologies are likely to be required to compete at various times in the business growth cycle. Selecting the priority trends will revolve around CIOs and IT leaders understanding their organizations’ short-term and strategic business objectives.

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