The coming together of Social, Mobility, Analytics, and Cloud (SMAC) has changed the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry and opened up greater opportunities for development and innovation.
Individually, we have seen how these technologies contributed to cost savings and process efficiencies, but combining them presented even more possibilities of improved flexibility and better customer experience. Outsourcing companies are treating them as an integrated whole, hence the “SMAC stack”. The integration of the four technologies requires clear policies and guidelines as well as management tools that can automate business processes.
According to Ed Anderson, research vice president at Gartner, “We see a lot companies focusing on one or more of these trends. But it’s when they converge that it becomes really interesting.”
What is SMAC?
SMAC is the combination of four trends in the Information Technology (IT) field namely Social Media, Mobile Technologies, Analytics, and Cloud Computing. This concept began in 2010 and sparked a new era in the industrial revolution. Here’s how each of the components transformed the way business is done:
- Social media has provided business with new ways to reach and interact with customers. Users of social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are constantly increasing and data are harnessed from these sites to uncover the persona of a customer.
- Mobile technologies have changed the way people communicate, shop and work. This technology allows users to update their profile, stay informed of deals and promotions, and track locations and buying habits, even when they are on-the-go.
- Analytics allows businesses to understand how, when and where people consume certain goods and services by analysing trends. It helps make intelligent predictions and meaningful insights about consumer behaviour based on the knowledge a system has about a customer.
- Cloud computing enables delivery of information and functionality to users and systems. This element provides a new way to access technology and the data a business needs to quickly respond to changing markets and solve problems.
SMAC creates an ecosystem that allows a business to improve its operations and get closer to the customer with minimal overhead and maximum reach.
The Fifth Wave
During the last fifty years, there have been four master corporate technology architectures: the mainframe, the minicomputer, client/server and the Internet that drove business productivity higher during those periods. In 2012, the fifth wave begun as the SMAC dominated the customer experience.
According to American IT consulting company Cognizant, SMAC will have a multiplying effect on businesses and increase productivity across the organisation. It believes that as many as 100 billion computing devices will be connected to the web by 2020. With this, corporations will be managing 50 times the data they do currently.
The Game Changer for the Outsourcing Industry
The outsourcing sector is one of the many industries being reformed by the SMAC stack. Aligning these technologies with process improvement efforts will help your company attain new levels of speed, responsiveness, quality and agility.
“SMAC is unleashing innovation at a rapid pace. It is transcending the digital space and revolutionizing the IT-BPM value chain,” says Jose Mari Mercado, president and chief executive of the Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines (IBPAP). “Access to credible, rich and compelling data and channels allows companies to compete better as well as manage risk. In many cases, it liberates organizations from incorrect assumptions that define their strategies or goals,” he added.
The convergence of SMAC can impact the future of both the business and its clients. It engages customers and improve the quality of their experience. In the same manner, it offers businesses a way to make sense and create meaningful interpretation of information from the data acquired. By embracing the convergence of these technologies, your company could recognise these excellent benefits.
The Outsourced Accountant supports Australian and New Zealand accounting firms by helping them understand and implement outsourcing solutions to help them become more proactive and truly add value to their clients. If you want to know more about outsourcing, call us at 1300 896 522, and download our e-book.