Exploring the possibilities of the fourth industrial revolution

We are in a time of dizzying change. It’s estimated that nearly half of all jobs could be at risk over the next two decades because of Artificial Intelligence, automation, cloud and IoT.


Humankind has entered uncharted territory in terms of the pace of technological change. The Fourth Industrial Revolution will confront us all - so what does the unknown world of possibility look like? Sam Williams, CMO of Certus, explores what’s on the horizon.





4th Industrial Revolution by Sam Williams from Certus Solutions



Key takeaways


Humanity will change more in the next 20 years than in the past 300 years.


We are entering the Fourth Industrial Revolution

  • A technological revolution that will fundamentally alter the way we live, work, and relate to one another. It is a fusion of technologies that is blurring the lines between the physical, digital, and biological spheres
  • The complexity of this change will be unlike anything humankind has experienced in previous industrial revolutions.

Disruption is now widespread across:

  • Business Models Uber, YouTube, Spotify,, Autonomous Cars, 3D Parts Printing, Amazon Prime.
  • Operating Models Mobile Banking, Amazon, e-Bay, Self-Service, Google Nest, Drone Deliveries.
  • Infrastructure Models Raspberry Pi, Cloud, SaaS, BYOD, Virtualisation, Containerisation, Micro-services.

The horizon model is an outdated approach to innovation

  • Horizon 1 - managing the current fiscal-reporting period, with all its short-term concerns (0-12 months)
  • Horizon 2 - onboarding the next generation of high-growth opportunities in the pipeline (12-36 months)
  • Horizon 3 - incubating the germs of new businesses that will sustain the franchise far into the future (36 – 72 months)

Implementing a zone-based approach to Innovation is more effective

According to Geoffrey Moore, author of Zone to Win, this is how the zone-based approach should work:

  • During periods of stability, the Performance Zone is funding the entire operation, with help from the Productivity Zone, paying the way for the Incubation Zone, building up whatever reserves it can for the next transformation.
  • During periods of disruption, the Transformation Zone rules the roost, its priorities trumping all others. All the other zones wake up every morning asking themselves, what can we do today to accelerate the transformation initiative?

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