Timing Is Everything

 

Around this time of year predictions of what lies ahead are everywhere.

At CAF we have the privilege of seeing the future - every day.

A lot of great ideas get discussed with clients and potential clients. For some it’s just not their time - and they may re-emerge successfully three or four years later. For others, it is their moment to scale - and we help make them famous. But what is it that drives this distinction?

Just recently I saw a really good Ted Talk about the secret of success. It argued that people often believe it’s the idea, but research shows that the number one factor is in fact…(drum roll)…timing. That moment when the stars align and the idea, the market and the tech can all deliver the promise.

So I thought it would be fun to make some predictions of my own. Where do I believe the timing will be right this year?

Mid-prime finance

There is still a large market for credit, but due to a tougher financial climate, demand within the mid-prime sector is not being met by traditional routes. Hold on…that sounds like a gap in the market, ready for disruption. And it is.

Our work last year with Vanquis bank is a good example of a responsible lender who wanted to put the customer at the heart of their business and make it easy for them to grow their credit rating. We helped them do this by creating an app that put their customers in control of their finances.

Taking a concept from POC to one of the best-rated banking apps (4.9 stars on the App Store) with over 500k customers Vanquis has written the blueprint for this market.  

We’ve already seen a number of new market entrants in all areas of finance (especially motor finance) and there will be more.

The potential for disruption is huge and established players will need to be on top of their game to compete with these challenger brands – who can become fully-fledged and in-market within 9 months of gaining a banking license.

Social media platforms

Those social media platforms that are private, secure and based on specialist interests will become the comms vehicles of choice for brands to message and reward their customers. They’ll also act as the place to promote diversity and CSR, as consumers become much more concerned about the ethics of who they do business with, work for and support.

These platforms are all mobile firsts and we believe we have a big idea in the space that we can’t wait to share. The timing on this one is red hot.

AI, VR, voice and data

The time for talking is over. It’s now time for action. The challenge for providers of this know-how and intelligence is to be ‘doers,’ as well as thinkers.

All the chin-pulling has to stop as large enterprises want to get implementation under way. In fact, we have already built six examples using these technologies to create products or great customer experiences.

We’ve worked hard to make the thinking and delivery around these products and services easy to buy. We want to make it real for businesses beyond the workshops and advise on the best tech to use, that will deliver the benefits it promises.

2018 is the year for the great ‘test and learn’ and the good news is we can get these technologies deployed within weeks for our customers.

Getting your act together…

It’s time for enterprises to focus on getting their tech stack and data easy to use.

In 8 years of doing what we do and having built over 100 applications, I’ve never found anyone who was mobile ready.

Now is that time. Make sure you get yourself able to play and if you’re a big company being attacked by the challengers, getting your tech environment right will see these guys off.

More companies are doing this and the tech suppliers are also making it easier. A blend of the big guys and the smart agile guys like CAF is a very potent competitive advantage.

Putting humans at the heart of digital

Our vision is all about putting humans at the heart of digital. Not tech for tech’s sake. It’s the people stories that are interesting to us, the beating heart of why we do what we do. You’ll see more of these stories on our new website.

We continue to grow all areas of the business and we love meeting people who will work with us to shape the future of CAF through their own unique contributions.

We have a talented leadership team who are enthused about the future and excited about the clients we have, the potential clients we are talking to and the opportunities that new tech will bring to employers, employees and consumers in 2018.

Cup of tea?

Why not drop in and see us for a cup of tea? Our studio is just around the corner in Farringdon and we love hearing about your digital challenges. We might even bring out the biscuits.

Happy New Year!

 
Mike Anderson