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My Predictions for 2017

With the full understanding forecasting or predicting can be fraught with the danger of getting egg on your face, here are a couple of my thoughts on what might happen next year.

  • This is the year business will start to pay more for money. Interest rates will increase. Unless you’re fully cashed up, start to review how you’re deploying your capital. Take steps to reduce debt. It has been more than 25 years since we have had a recession, so many bad habits will have crept into the business. I see so many businesses today that have lost sight of the real cost of inventory. There is a belief that inventory is cheap. This will come back to bite executives unless they address these habits soon.
  • Technology is about to deliver the next big breakthrough with machine learning or predictive analytics capabilities. Effective use of these technologies is predicated on having clean underlying data and stable business processes.  Trouble is, most organisations haven’t fully utilised the capabilities of their system now, let alone been ready to effectively exploit these new capabilities.
  • ERP replacement will be a hot topic in 2017. Many organisations last changed their system prior to the dreaded Y2K bug, which means they are operating on systems around 18 years old. This technology definitely cannot exploit the capabilities I just mentioned. As competition starts to get better at understanding the customer through their data analytics, the underlying business system will have to change.

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