With myriad applications and technologies available to modern businesses, choosing the best one for your organisation and its needs can be a challenge.
A key trend to be aware of is the rise of 'smart' business applications - programs that help link the various systems deployed by a company together.
At the Outperform conference in Berlin, TechRadar Pro spoke exclusively to Patrick Schneidau, VP at price optimisation software specialist PROS, to learn more about this recent development.
Schneidau said that competitive organisations need more than just an automation platform - with "so much data out there", they now require the tools to turn all that data into actionable business insights.
"What we've seen over the years is tech focussed on the automation of processes - Salesforce automation, procurement automation and marketing automation. [But] great technologies provide efficiencies for the business. A lot of people ask us: "How can we do more with the data we have?" [So] there's a growing trend towards data science - big data applications that drive business value from the insights that those automation systems produce. There's access to so much data out there, and being able to connect all that and drive business insights is [the key].
This new wave of 'smart' business applications, Schneidau posited, could be the answer to a great many enterprise pain points. It's certainly something that organisations looking to provision new tools will want to consider.
"Smart applications [are] applications that don't just automate the process, but combine automation, intelligence and analytics in one piece of software to drive better decision-making. For example: you may have a new sales rep who comes into a big company, selling thousands of products, they've got a couple hundred customers, and they have no idea what to sell. [It's about] helping that person figure out what's the right product to sell to this customer, and what that customer is willing to pay for it. It helps drive productivity and efficiency and additional revenue and profitability.