This fourth revolution puts in place new ways of working, new ways of collaborating, new human-machine capabilities, new modes of interactions and new sources of growth. This revolution will touch nearly all aspects of human life : consumption, communication, culture, politics, social and economic life. This revolution will also reshape the future of the digital economy.
A new by-product of Industry 4.0
A new strategic asset.
This one, made up of the flexible digital intellectual capital (digital assets, skills, knowledge and technologies) of individuals and businesses, represents an asset comprised of both intellectual assets (the information and ideas at the heart of innovation) and the physical assets that can be used to support these assets.
Digital assets remain the primary human capital of our economy. They represent the competencies and capabilities that companies, teams and individuals possess. Businesses and individuals obtaining access to all the information, knowledge and skills required to execute on an idea, and not just their own, remain the key to future competitiveness and growth.
The key to this revolution is not only the emergence of new digital technologies, but the development of new digital tools that allow large teams of people to work collectively and collaboratively. These tools are now called ‘digital platforms’.
The development of these new features, made to seamlessly incorporate and manage large numbers of people and their interactions, represent a major change from the social networks (family, friends and colleagues) offered by social networks to those offered by ‘social media’.
What is more, the emergence of these new digital platforms represent the emergence of a new model for the design, development and delivery of business services.
In other words, the balance between these two components — the application of technology and the existence of customised digital platforms — are key to the success of the internet of things.
We thus embark on a journey that will take us into powerful arenas in which we will experience a new development in which many difficult, old and poorly-specified problems will be solved, and many new found possibilities will be revealed. We will, in short, witness the emergence of a new infrastructural layer that will contribute to the success of the Internet of Things.
Which technologies will mark the Fourth Industrial Revolution?
Strategic Archives of the Future
The future cloud is a key to business 4.0. This future cloud represents a series of platforms of cooperative service management and collaboration accessible to all. Such cloud platforms will change the way we manage, protect and make sense of resources and data, and how we interact and transact.
Cloud platforms allow us to build, scale, manage and protect our digital assets. They host our information and our applications. They enable us to retrieve, modify, share, and store our information. For businesses, cloud platforms enable them to use their digital assets (people, processes, infrastructure, data) derived from their activities (the collection, analysis, management, creation, purchasing, transformation, and dissemination of information).
Cloud platforms also enable users (businesses and individuals) to create new assets (experiences, services, and consumer goods) and to use their assets to construct new applications.
Cloud platforms are key to Business 4.0, which is not surprising given our growing dependence on digital technology for virtually all aspects of our daily lives.
What is more, these cloud platforms are a joint asset of all the users located with them.
These cloud platforms would allow all users of them to make use of the computing resources of each host on a mutual need basis, in a cooperative manner, on a non-exclusive basis. This new type of cloud platforms would represent a new type of infrastructure: inter-organisational and inter-personal.
This new development would create a platform that could provide an efficient mechanism for users and companies to be able to share their resources and the knowledge, data and analysis that is generated from them.
The rise of these new platforms would mark the beginning of a new era, the rise of a new form of economic activity where companies offer a service.
What is more, these new cloud platforms would be the only business model able to offer value to all users through the exchange of shared resources ; they would include (in the context of Business 4.0) stock market companies that move aggregated products through shared and sold knowledge about new products or open their shelves to new suppliers.
As a result of all this, there would no longer be a clear distinction between firms, businesses and companies. Each would be in the position of a service provider. The particular characteristics of each firm would be the creation of new types of relationships with its clients.
This new Internet would move toward its inevitable conclusion. It would mark the arrival of either a Third Industrial Revolution, or the arrival of a Second Industrial Revolution synchronized by the Internet of Things.
The arrival of new digital technologies and the deepening of the Internet of Things will create the scarcity of human resources in the workforce (human capital) and in the context of new business models.
Obtaining access to these new resources would be the key to the development of new models of management and organisation.
But we should not forget that the arrival of this new information technology tool would also affect productivity-related indicators.
According to McKinsey & Company, McKinsey Global Institute, as the amount of digital data doubles by 2020, advances in Big Data and analytics will double productivity and GDP growth over the following decade.
This means that many of the challenges that managers now face due to technological variability would be reduced by the adoption of Big Data, Machine Learning, analytics and distributed systems; products and services will become more intelligent to take advantage of these new technologies.
As a result, we would see a change in the way we see technological tools and their values:
Instead of there being an increasing need to change the tool to make it better (e.g., the sewing machine or the car), the new tools would be able to adapt to a constantly evolving scenario, even if this scenario is perceived as unstable and chaotic (due to the rise of the Internet of Things) to a limited extent. This would eliminate the need for constant changes and for unintelligent organizations to adapt to all the changes they address, which is one of the causes of human capital shortages.
What is more, these new analytical tools would also respond clearly to the situation of the consumer. Products would be able to learn from their users and provide them with the appropriate service at the best possible price.
The intelligence of these tools would be totally black and white. They would be intelligent to the point that it would be possible to measure their performance and predict their behaviour.
What has been seen as key to the widespread use of these tools in the new economy is that they would be able to learn, adapt, and learn again depending on the circumstances. The use of analytical software to gain valuable insights would become more and more valuable as a result.
In addition, using these tools would become easy to use for the end-user (the consumer) as an empty shell of a product.
Human, machine and machine
It is obvious that the attestation of these new tools and the emergence of a new information technology tool (the Internet of Things) is not compatible with the idea of a transparent and well-informed society.
This comes from the fact that more and more of our life becomes the activity of the information technology, most of which will have only digital aspects.
People would not perceive that something is not right because, for instance, they would be incapable of accessing the video of what happened or because the company that provided them with a service could not provide any information or help. This is the information technology effect: less public interventions.
This is clearly a problem that needs to be addressed. The aim of the Internet of Things is to produce a voice that is easier to be heard and more accessible to the greater part of the population.
However, this will not be achieved if we allow the same to happen to the digital territory as to the real one. If we want to ensure the security of our personal life, we must be able to guarantee the safety of our digital territory and be able to control all the technologies that we use in our daily life.
If we are transparent in our digital life, if we want all our actions and interactions to be available to everyone, the consequences of that transparency for our society should be clarified and well-received by the whole population of the globe.
The Internet of Things will be transparent to a large extent.
But is has to be the same with our choice to be transparent.
The Internet of Things will force businesses to renew their business model. The arrival of the Internet of Things would give companies a new language of coordination and exchange between systems and processes, which would allow them to optimise market share, production, and sales.
However, there is an area that will lie outside of these new business models. There is an area where we will need more and more skills, and that is in the area of human capital.
This is a sector that will be affected by the arrival of the Internet of Things, a sector where there will be a shortage of trained people, especially in the area of data science, computing and information technology.
This is why it is essential to increase the training of our future human capital, and also to be able to attract them through a management model that will seize the potential of these new technologies through a commitment to care for the significant changes that our human resources face.
These changes should embrace within they advance in the development of new digital technology and digital-human technologies (IDH, see above).
This new innovation policy should place on today’s table a new concept of value, not only from the perspective of the business, but from the perspective of the values of those who work in the company.
This advanced concept of value must take into account that these values, the values of the users, are no longer the same as the business values.
This is the challenge of the Internet of Things: it shows us that those who work within a business do not see the conditions that have changed or those who use the products or services are not interested in the new concepts that are imposed.
The future of the human in the business
Companies will be placed in the position of having to change their management model, because the one that serves them today does not have sufficient new approaches and skills to make use of the new opportunities that the Internet of Things will allow them to take.
This is also an area that must be addressed, in order to avoid the decline in productivity (due to information technology).
Companies will need to re-skill their human capital and create a new way of managing it that is adapted to the circumstances of the new technological developments and the Internet of Things.
This new model will promote flexibility, adaptability and interaction, and it will require that companies (as employers) and employees (as workers) change their roles. The workforce will be able to take advantage of a new software that enables all of their tasks to be more automatic, distributed, and simple to adapt to.
Even though these new tools will have clear benefits as regards productivity and efficiency, this new management approach will not be simple or applicable to all companies.
It will be applicable to those that choose to change the management model and adopt the skills of the future, and those that are ready to invest in the profession of the human.
The human is the resource that remains one of the most important in the business, and it is in charge of not only the quality of a company and the good and cooperative relationships within that company (including its employees), but also of the whole economic and productive process.
The human will be part of each company and it will have to be able to meet this change due to the Internet of Things. The new way of managing human resources, and the way this activity is seen by the company, belongs to the area of information and technology.
Thus we should be able to say that information technology and knowledge of the Internet of Things are key management factors in a company, which demands new skills.
The Internet of Things will have a clear impact on the labor market. It will have an impact on all areas related to the digital transformation of work: employment, employment conditions, co-determination, the participation on working groups, and the employment contract (contracts, salaries, economic measures and norms).
The labor market changes that the Internet of Things will provoke will depend on the size and the type of the company. In times of crisis, however, companies will have to respond to the needs of the labor market via different ways and by adapting themselves to the situation.
In this case, the Internet of Things will help companies to improve their IT and IT security processes, which will benefit the labor market in a way that can establish improvements in labor productivity.
However, the great majority of companies, especially those with a tradition of job security, luxury and luxury benefits, are not ready for a change that enables them to increase their loyalty and the loyalty of their employees to their company, as well as their salaries.
Companies are not ready for losing their traditional management model, for a new and changed approach to employees, one that no longer allows them to do what they want.
Companies are not prepared for these changes, and they are fundamentally opposed to them.
This is one of the most serious challenges that the Internet of Things will bring. The new technologies that will allow information flows to be constant and uninterrupted, and that will put control of a large number of objects that can be associated with it, will be a political challenge for the management stature of companies and the relationship between managers and managers.
The Internet of Things will have a positive impact on the working environment due to the productivity it brings, but the negative impacts that they bring will be due to the non-adaptation of companies to this change.
The negative effect of the Internet of Things will be a reduction in the salary of workers.
This will be the result of companies that do not equip themselves to deal with a change and who fail to respond to the needs and expectations of the labor market.
If companies are not ready for such changes, they could experience a negative impact due to macroeconomic changes, such as a decrease in productivity , an increase in consumer and service demand, and the growth in labor.
The Internet of Things will have an impact on the labor market as a result of different factors, but most of the time it will be due to technological changes within the labor market.
The Internet of Things will also have an impact on the employees. This change will be caused by the technology used, the information flows that will be generated, the opportunities that will be offered, and the employment contracts that will be written and will be used.
The Internet of Things will have an impact on the way employees and managers work, and this will have a negative impact on the relationship that can exist between them.
The Internet of Things is presented as a virtuous change, and this will have a positive impact on the quantitative labor market, provided that the average use of this technology is fairly moderate, especially considering that the Internet of Things has no doubt that the Internet of Things can contribute to the creation of new jobs, be it at the level of the individual, the level of the microenterprise or the level of the company.
Because when someone is unemployed (whether through dismissal, casualization or retirement because of over capacity) it will not be lost to this new technology:
When the Internet of Things becomes useful to companies, it can have a positive impact on the volume of employment, because in an increase in technology there will be a development in the labor market.
When the Internet of Things becomes useful to those who have low productivity in job search (such as the young or the new graduates), it will assume the role of creating new jobs.
In addition to this, since the Internet of Things allows companies to be managed like an individual, the Internet of Things can create new jobs both in companies and in individuals.
It is more likely that within the Internet of Things (the Internet of things for companies and the Internet of things for individuals) the employment of jobs will increase due to this technology.
The Internet of Things will also have an impact on the employment strategies of employers. The most obvious impact will be the increase in the number of employees that are needed, which can lead to a situation of continuing unemployment of the workers who were previously employed in the company.
In addition to this, the Internet of Things will have an impact on the employment strategies of employees, and this will lead to a situation of continuing employment in the company.
The Internet of Things can be seen as a source of stable employment and the expansion of businesses in general. It can also be seen as a source of unemployment, so this has a negative and positive impact on the economic environment of the labor market; whether the Internet of Things will be positive or negative on the labor market depends on the company that employs it.
Through the Internet of Things, companies will be able to increase productivity.
As a result of the Internet of Things, companies will be able to lower costs, to have continuous information flows, to have a better management of assets and the reduction of the number of errors that can be made.
The Internet of Things will also have an impact on companies through the reduction of errors that will be present in the management and the management process.
There will be a lessening of time and costs, due to the automation of the management and its automation. There will be a decrease in the number of errors that can occur in the production process and in the coordination of the production process.
The Internet of Things will also have an impact on companies through the reduction of environmental and material costs, such as the reduction of the energy consumption of production assets.
The Internet of Things will be able to have an impact on the labor market in the sense that it can lead to a reduction in the number of employees.
One of the things that can have a negative impact on the Internet of Things is the non-existence of organizations that are able to understand and apply the Internet of Things, as well as the correct application of the digital content and the use of this content to increase productivity.
Companies will not be able to respond to the effects of the Internet of Things if they fail to adapt to this change, if they do not implement a new management model, if they do not have supple organizational planning that differs from the traditional model, and if they do not have a new concept of employment contracts.
These resources will not provide the Internet of Things with opportunities of success. If companies are not able to develop new resources to manage and use the Internet of Things, companies are not going to benefit from the Internet of Things, either through technology or through efficiency, and in this case the Internet of Things will not provide positive results to the development of the labor market.
To conclude, the Internet of Things will have a negative impact on companies if they do not have the resources that they need for its implementation.