As we enter 2021, I’ve been reflecting on the important role that technology has played in mapping out new territory to help people and organizations solve challenges on their own terms. And I believe that understanding the latest tech trends and how to respond to them is doubly important to do this in the year ahead.

Fjord Trends

Each year Accenture Interactive crowdsources trends in business, technology and design from our global design network of more than 2,000 creatives in around 40 locations. In Fjord Trends 2021, we delve into seven trends that we believe will be most important for organizations, employees, and customers over the next year and beyond—and I’d like to share a quick snapshot of them here for you now.

  1. Collective displacement: Organizations must find new ways to reach and communicate with people, and to deliver brand experiences at a distance, in a different spatial and social context. Tony Leraris, Managing Director – Global IT, recently talked about our detailed resiliency plans during the pandemic and how we were able to equip and support our people to work from home.
  2. Do it yourself innovation: Organizations must offer tools rather than prescribe solutions to enable people to get more creative with how they live. You might find it useful to listen to our CIO Penelope Prett talking to two of our tech leaders in a recent podcast about how Accenture has been tackling innovation.
  3. Sweet teams are made of this: Organizations need to rethink not only the employee experience, but also the reciprocal employer/employee contract. For example, the early weeks of the pandemic saw 44 million daily users of Microsoft Teams—and our own usage increased massively, too—we saw a 257% increase in Microsoft Teams audio usage and a 642% increase in video usage immediately following the pandemic.
  4. Interaction wanderlust: Organizations should reconsider design, content, audience and the interaction between them to inject greater excitement, joy and serendipity into screen experiences. Accenture Global IT has seen how the acceleration of social media has meant video has become a medium of choice—and our broadcast production facilities and video platform mean we can equip our modern, agile workforce with the right tools to engage, inform and collaborate with each other and our clients.
  5. Liquid infrastructure: Organizations should rethink their physical assets and refocus on points of delight in the last few feet before purchase. It’s not easy to stay one step ahead of business needs, but even before the pandemic our Global IT team had put a cloud, platform-based business in place with the security and standards we needed to be resilient for the future.
  6. Empathy challenge: Organizations may need a new approach that blends pragmatism with empathy that ensures they are seen to follow through on their intentions to do good. In a podcast with my colleague Margaret Smith, responsible for Accenture’s Geographic Services, we found out how personal connection and engagement matters—we need the right tools to collaborate to be agile in the workplace.
  7. Rituals lost and found: Organizations must identify where they sit within the new, everyday coping strategies and how they can help build new ways for people to cope and reconnect. In Accenture Global IT, we’ve been focused on keeping our people safe while accelerating equality in the workplace and we’ve demonstrated that by enabling every employee to interact with accessible technology.

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Fjord trends 2021 Manifesto

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With trends like these, I think this year will be about creating new maps to help us uncover what’s yet to come—so that we can plan a better route to the world we want to live and work in. Interested? Take a closer look at these Fjord 2021 Trends to learn more.

Jason Warnke

Senior Managing Director – Global IT, Digital Experiences Lead

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