Firms will accelerate investments in technology to enable their workforce and provide differentiated experiences

LONDONOct. 15, 2020 – Forrester (FORR: NASDAQ) predicts that 2021 will be the year that every company will double down on technology-fueled experiences, operations, products, and ecosystems. According to Forrester’s 2021 Predictions released today, the success of European organisations will depend on how quickly and well they harness technology to enable their workforce in the new normal and build platforms that differentiate them.

Forrester’s Predictions reports analyse the dynamics impacting different industries and disciplines, including changing consumer behaviours, customer experience, employee experience, marketing, privacy, and technology. Key highlights from Forrester’s European 2021 Predictions include:

  • More than one-third of European white-collar workers will remain remote full-time. In 2021, 49% of European managers anticipate a permanently higher rate of full-time remote employees. As a result, remote cross-border work will grow.

  • Chief marketing officers will assert full control over the customer lifecycle. CMOs will put the customer at the centre of everything they do: leadership, strategy, and operations. As a result, spend on loyalty and retention marketing will increase by 30% in 2021.

  • Chief information officers will embrace cloud-first and platform strategies for speed and adaptiveness. In 2021, 30% of firms will continue to accelerate their spend on cloud, security and risk, networks, and mobility — including struggling firms looking to gain advantage coming out of the pandemic.

  • The European Parliament will draft new AI rules and abandon e-privacy reformThe European Parliament will not only fail to adopt the e-privacy regulation proposal in 2021 but will shelve it altogether. The European Parliament will also finalise a draft of a new AI regulation that will be the world’s first.

  • Fraud and data breaches in banking will reach an all-time high. In 2021, there will be a high number of fraudulent COVID-19 loans. Banks will also face breaches and fines because of naive businesses that digitised with little regard for the EU’s GDPR and the PCI DSS, exposing data and compromising millions of accounts.

“During the pandemic, European firms accomplished tasks that once seemed impossible — sometimes overnight,” said Laura Koetzle, VP and group director at Forrester. “Indeed, with volatility comes opportunity. The shift to remote work, standing up e-commerce platforms to sell online, and organising events virtually to stay connected are just some examples of pivots that European organisations had to make quickly. In 2021, firms will need to be adaptive, creative, and resilient, with our Predictions indicating a trend toward technology acceleration.”


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