IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Small and Medium-Sized Business 2021 Predictions

IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Small and Medium-Sized Business 2021 Predictions

This IDC study looks at what IDC believes is next for SMBs as they continue to navigate uncertainty and volatility in the coming months spanning digitalization, technology spending, commerce, automation, and workforce changes and even what the next wave of SMBs will look like. The critical drivers of accelerated disruption, finding the next normal, leveraging intelligence, and digital platforms, while transforming working models and customer engagement approaches, are also driving increased connectivity needs — in short, SMBs literally need to reinvent large portions of their business.According to Shari Lava, research director, Small and Medium Business, "Digital transformation, which was a competitive edge last year, is a business imperative this year. SMBs need to continue digitizing the operations that underpin the customer journey in order to stabilize and recover through this crisis."

Please Note: Extended description available upon request.


IDC FutureScape Figure
Executive Summary
IDC FutureScape Predictions
Summary of External Drivers
Predictions: Impact on Technology Buyers
Prediction 1: By 2024, 60% of SMBs Will Have Accelerated Their Digitalization by Making Significant Investments into Software As a Service, Improving Their Customer Experience Mechanisms, and Becoming More Data Driven
Associated Drivers
IT Impact
Guidance
Prediction 2: By 2022, 70% of SMBs of All Sizes Will Have Digitized the Essential Components of the Customer Buying Journey, Using Digital Commerce to Survive and Transform
Associated Drivers
IT Impact
Guidance
Prediction 3: By 2022, at Least 30% of Lagging SMBs Will Accelerate Digitalization Focusing on Internal Processes and Operations, While Digital Leaders Will Commit to Delivering Dynamic Experiences to Differentiate
Associated Drivers
IT Impact
Guidance
Prediction 4: By 2023, 40% of All SMBs Will Tap into Digital Labor to Augment and Complement Their Resources, Addressing Major Gaps in Skills
Associated Drivers
IT Impact
Guidance
Prediction 5: By 2023, 40% of SMBs Will Upgrade Their Connectivity to Better Meet the Changing Business Needs of Connectivity, Communication, and Mobility While Enabling Business Continuity and Resiliency
Associated Drivers
IT Impact
Guidance
Prediction 6: Driven by the Need to Become Resilient, by 2023, 60% of Digitally Determined SMBs Will Increase Their AI/Analytics and RPA Investments with the Aim of Reducing Human Intervention Through Agile Processes
Associated Drivers
IT Impact
Guidance
Prediction 7: By 2021, at Least 70% of Digitally Enabled SMBs Will Operate Under a Hybrid Model of Working, with Remote Work Emerging As a Norm
Associated Drivers
IT Impact
Guidance
Prediction 8: By 2024, 60% of SMBs Will Take Proactive Measures to Ensure Cyber-Resiliency Fostering Customer and Community Trust, Leaving Behind Reactive Approaches to Cybersecurity
Associated Drivers
IT Impact
Guidance
Prediction 9: By 2024, 60% of SMBs Will Have Adopted Public Cloud Platforms for Some Aspect of Their Technology Architecture, with the Digitally Determined Deepening Their Public Cloud Platform Adoption Most
Associated Drivers
IT Impact
Guidance
Prediction 10: By 2024, 30% of Start-Ups Will Have a Purpose-Driven Element as Part of Their Company Ethos, with Sustainability, Inclusion, and Responsible Production Becoming Increasingly Important
Associated Drivers
IT Impact
Guidance
Advice for Technology Buyers
External Drivers: Detail
Accelerated Disruption — Crisis, Resilience, and Opportunity
Description
Context
The Next Normal — Resilient Business and Operating Models
Description
Context
Intelligence Everywhere — Data Drives Action
Description
Context
Digital Platform — Ecosystems at Scale
Description
Context
Customer Engagement Redefined — Safe, Secure, and Sustainable Digital Experience
Description
Context
Digital Divide — The Imperative of Connectivity
Description
Context
Work Transformation — Redefining Teams, Skills, and Leadership
Description
Context
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