Couldn’t make it to Future Decoded 2016 at Excel London? Not to worry, Di Mabe (Client Services Director) has a round-up of the opening and closing keynote speeches. It’s all about digital transformation and security.
Business Day Opening Keynote
1) The keynote was led by Ryan Asdourian (Windows & Devices Group Lead, Microsoft) with the main thread of the keynote presentations relating to digital transformation and how organisations are embracing this change.
2) Toni Townes-Whitley (CVP Worldwide Public Sector, Microsoft) talked about Microsoft’s vision for digital transformation within Public Sector; from enabling and transforming smart cities of the future, to helping government officials deliver higher quality citizen services at lower cost.
3) Chris Bishop (Scientist and Lab Director, Microsoft Research) followed with research on AI and presented an example of how it is being developed to help Radiographers. It can cut the time to identify and treat Cancer tumours, a very real example of where AI is transforming the treatment of Cancer.
Several organisations (including Just Giving, RAC and Centrica) talked through how they used the latest digital technologies to transform their business – interesting to hear about these as members of the Curo ‘talent community’ have been involved in two of these projects.
4) The opening keynote concluded with Philip Hammond, Chancellor of the Exchequer, launching the new National Cyber Security Strategy 2016 – 2021. The strategy’s vision is ‘we are secure and resilient to cyber threats, prosperous and confident in the digital world’. It’s supported by £1.9bn of transformative investment over 5 years and built on three pillars:
• Defend against cyber threats
• Deter our adversaries
• Develop our skills & capabilities
Overall I came away from the opening keynote excited by the opportunities digital transformation offers, but also thoughtful about the effect this will have on the skills needed for this future economy and how different these are from when I entered the world of IT in the 70’s!!!
Business Day Closing Keynote
5) Brian McBridge (Chairman, ASOS PLC and Wiggle.com) talked about how ASOS had used digital technology to transform the business and the way they engage with customers.
Many interesting examples of the way they used social media, tracking when famous people wore their dresses and jumping on it instantly. Taylor Swift wearing a yellow dress, Princess Kate wearing a spotty maternity dress – both were sold out within minutes using digital technology!!
6) The mood shifted from digital technology to an awe-inspiring talk from Martine Wright, Paralympic Athlete and 7/7 Survivor. She took the stage to a standing ovation. Her story brought tears to a few people I was sitting near – including myself.
She gave a real-world example of what it is like to fully embrace change in your life whether that has been driven from a positive or negative start. The astounding thing was that despite what happened on 7 July 2005, her lucky number was 7. She had fully embraced changes 7 had brought into her life, including the power of 7 values she lives her life by now.
One of these 7 is Opportunity. Nothing is impossible if you set out to achieve it, and she has certainly done that. Martine ended her session by announcing she has just been told she will be awarded an MBE. Very well deserved!
7) The final interview was with Bill Bryson, Author. He spoke about how humans adapt to changes in science and technology, and how the UK is uniquely positioned. “We have 1% of the world’s population, but 10% of the world’s science papers.”
Future Decoded certainly helped me understand what is behind Microsoft’s new mission ‘empowering every person and organisation on the planet to achieve more’. I had many thoughts on how we could achieve more through digital transformation – both as an organisation and in my own life on the journey home!
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