‘Technology is the key driver’

Technology companies are in the vanguard of economic revival, says Julian David, chief executive of techUK


In a tough economic environment, businesses will always be seeking to improve, adapt and be flexible to the changing environment. Technology, as always, is a key driver of innovation, and is at the heart of enabling business to evolve and maintain a commercial advantage.

The rise of technologies, such as cloud, mobile and social, has had a significant impact on the way companies operate with a clear focus on improved business outcomes. This shift has seen the role of technology within a business change from a support service to an integral player at the heart of operations, with the potential to be used to influence new commercial strategies and affect the shape of a business.

As chief executive of techUK, I am in a great position to hear from companies across the breadth of the tech sector that are focusing on delivering new solutions for businesses to help them become more agile and flexible to the market needs. I believe that tech is the lifeblood of the UK economy.

Craig Wilson, regional vice president at HP Enterprise Services, UK & Ireland, comments: “Customers are demanding more from businesses than ever before and, with competition even fiercer, it has never been more crucial to be able to act quickly, and to be able to introduce new services and innovations to differentiate your offer from the competition. Customer experience is critical for both public and private-sector organisations.

“Technology and information are the key enablers here and digital channels, such as mobile apps, online and social, are becoming the face of your organisation, but they have to link to the back-end systems quickly and securely.

The key ingredients for agility and a differentiated customer experience are digital marketing, engaging design, innovative technology, seamless integration, scale, security and great analytics

“It is time marketing, sales and IT teams work together and stop creating apps, and instead start building user experience. The key ingredients for agility and a differentiated customer experience are a combination of digital marketing, engaging design, innovative technology, seamless integration, scale, security and great analytics.”

This is a growing market for UK tech companies. McKinsey released statistics demonstrating how widespread the adoption of these new technologies has become. The report, A Rising Role for IT, highlights that nearly 75 per cent of businesses are using social technologies to collaborate with colleagues, partners and clients, and nearly 90 per cent have developed new services delivered through the cloud.

This rapid adoption of technology as an enabler of greater business agility demonstrates not only the market opportunity for UK tech firms, but also cements technology’s role as a driver of growth across the whole economy. The UK has long been a hotbed of innovation, and has a long heritage of developing business solutions with new technologies being brought to market by established corporates and exciting start-ups.

Our economy depends on businesses across all sectors being able to be sleek and flexible to changing market pressures and opportunities. Our tech companies are, once more, rising to the challenge and preparing UK plc for the future.

Julian David heads the UK technology industry’s trade association, techUK.