Ascent 2016 - Enterprise without boundaries Atos - Ascent Magazine: promises of a converging world Ascent Look Out: Anticipating the new opportunities and challenges created by the emergence of new technologies Ascent Lookout 2014 Ascent magazine: A magazine into the future of our ever-more connected planet

Robot butler at your service

Atos - Robot butler at your service

Imagine a world where robots help you manage your chores. Not just basic tasks like switching the lights on; but more sophisticated jobs, like monitoring the saucepan on the hob, watering the plants in the garden and carrying heavy objects for the elderly and disabled. With the advent of connected technologies, this isn’t a fantasy anymore: sharing our world with these ‘butlers’ is becoming a reality through the development of sensors.

Organisations around the world are working to drive innovation in robotics – from robots in Japan that can read human emotions to robots in the UK that are teaching children to program. We all know that smartphones are becoming increasingly central to everyday life: from communicating with friends, to checking your bank balance and buying goods. But, with the right skills in place, robots could become the smartphones of … Continue reading ...

Meeting Expectations: Why Businesses Must Find the New ‘Personal Touch

Atos -  Meeting Expectations Why Businesses Must Find the New Personal TouchAlthough many tenets of good customer service are undisputed, there is no doubt that customer expectations have reached a new height thanks to the rise of digital technology. While a demand for high quality and convenient service remains, the relationship between a business and its customers has evolved. The desire for a personal touch is changing; today’s customers want the freedom to do as much as possible for themselves – accessing any service or application, at all times and from any location.

With high quality service becoming a hygiene factor, a smooth experience is no longer a differentiator; technology must simply work. This presents a serious challenge for businesses where their technology and service are becoming increasingly invisible and so businesses need to find a ‘new’ personal touch which can still add value.

Invisible Infrastructure and Losing Customer Touch Points

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Twitch.tv – Mindless entertainment or a glimpse of the future?

Atos - Twitch.tv - Mindless entertainment or a glimpse of the future?A few years ago the online humour site The Onion did an absolutely brilliant parody of online gaming called “World of World of Warcraft” in which they presented a game in which the player takes the character of an online gamer playing “World of Warcraft”, at the time, the biggest multiplayer game. (You can watch the parody here at http://www.theonion.com/video/warcraft-sequel-lets-gamers-play-a-character-playi,14240/). In a case of life imitating art imitating life imitating art, Twitch (or Twitch.tv) is a live streaming video platform featuring playthroughs of video games by users with webcams of the player and ad hoc communities following the games, a sort of “League of League of Legends” if you like.

I have to admit when I first saw my son watching Twitch I couldn’t help thinking it was absolutely silly and mindless. Watch others play games? Who would ever … Continue reading ...

Diversity Drives Innovation

Atos - Diversity Drives InnovationBusinesses are becoming increasingly tech-led and innovation is being hailed as the fuel for Europe’s next growth spurt. The pace of innovation is dictating whether firms win or lose as they transform into digital businesses. Forward-thinking companies are recognising the importance of diversity in driving their creative and operational processes.

It might be tempting to create teams of like-minded employees, with similar ages, education and experiences, but without diversity, the team will be missing out on new ideas and efficiency. Diversity sparks innovation. By bringing together people from different cultural backgrounds, with different expertise and skill sets, age groups and gender, it will unlock different dynamics and viewpoints that are essential for creativity and innovation. While there’s a sense of satisfaction in quickly reaching a mutual consensus on decisions in like-minded teams, you will not always achieve the best outcome. … Continue reading ...

Wellbeing at Work – Beyond Measurement?

Wellbeing at Work – Beyond Measurement?How can we measure wellbeing and happiness at work? Whilst we can all agree that a happy and healthy workforce is invariably more productive, most companies still feel uncomfortable tackling intangible ‘body and mind’ issues, preferring to focus only on tangible facts and performance figures instead.

In my last blog Introducing the Kindness Performance Indicator (KiPI), I questioned whether organizations are measuring the right indicators for business success, as the human side of company operations is often overshadowed by financial and productivity metrics.

From factory thinking to conscious business

Having the right skills and expertise is vital to perform a job well and, for most managers, makes task and man management a straightforward process. If a person has the right skills for the job, the task to be performed can be started immediately and productivity can be translated directly … Continue reading ...