20 December 2022

This time last year, we asked 10 Opencast people to share their predictions for the year that lay ahead. As 2022 comes to a close we asked them to tell us if they think their forecasts came to pass.

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"Hybrid was certainly a wrestle! We gently encourage our people to make use of our spaces without compulsion. It's a tricky balance!"
Prediction 1: ongoing turbulence from Covid, Brexit and climate change – Tom Lawson, chief executive

Tom's verdict: “It has certainly remained turbulent times! Global geo-politics came to a head with the war in Ukraine, which has caused significant disturbance to the world economy and international relations. The impact was felt strongly in the tech sector given the volume of technology capability located in that region which meant organisations had to respond quickly to relocate people and/or services reinforcing the points raised about composable business and technology architecture.”

Prediction 2: AWS to force Azure or Google Cloud to fold – David Sarginson, head of software development

Sarg's verdict: “So Azure and Google Cloud are still going strong and seem to be sharing the market quite well with AWS. Total miss!”

Prediction 3: Simpler, more agile solutions to augment existing systems – Lee Foster, chief technology officer

Lee's verdict: “I think my prediction turned out okay - I've definitely seen technology leaders incorporating investment in low code, no-code and automation technologies to augment (rather than replace) their core systems and services.”

Prediction 4: connectivity to define device success – Paul Crisp, enterprise architect

Paul's verdict: “My prediction was that we'd be looking at an internet of everything and I would stand by that. The distinction between device types and their physical location and the disparate role of the infrastructure that links them all up just seems to be vanishing.”

Prediction 5: DevSecOps (development, security, and operations) to rise in prominence – Adam Coles, head of engineering

Adam's verdict: “No doubt that DevSecOps continues to be as important, with security and compliance being vital areas to address in order to enable the full impact of DevOps and continuous delivery.”

Prediction 6: designers challenged more on ethical impact – Emily Allinson, head of user-centred design

Emily's verdict: “I think this has proven to be true, with more designers than ever turning their attention to the wider ethical context of users' experiences - in their communities, society, and the planet. We've seen more people bring interest and expertise in these areas, more training created around these topics, and more clients asking about this.”

Prediction 7: hybrid debate to find the best work balance – Charlie Hoult, co-founder

Charlie's verdict: “Hybrid was certainly a wrestle in 2022! We opened a new HQ and three city hubs, without requiring anyone to be in an office at certain hours or days. But one of the reasons we've invested in these spaces is that we want a return to more human collaboration, so we gently encourage our people to make use of our spaces when it benefits them and their work. It is a tricky balance! That's why we say hybrid is all about being in 'the right place, at the right time' to deliver work - and keep our company culture alive and human. We've animated our spaces with different activities, whether it's guest expert speakers, lunch and learns, mental health first aid, sushi-making or pumpkin carving on halloween!"

Prediction 8: tech job candidates in the driving seat – Lorna Madden, head of talent engagement

Lorna's verdict: “Since 2020, the world of recruitment has vastly changed, so much so that a bit of normality is required and a few iterative changes to make further advances and ultimately life better for everyone. Thinking about 2023, it turns out my views for the year ahead aren't hugely different!”

Prediction 9: push on innovation and collaboration on skills – Cate Kalson, chief people officer

Cate's verdict: “We have seen strong innovation and collaboration between employers to tackle skills shortages. In 2022 we worked as a consortium of technology consultancies with Bright Network to bring early-career professionals into one of the UK government's biggest digital delivery centres. We developed a partnership with Ten10 to bring early-career software developers into Opencast and learn from their experience. We've worked with North of Tyne Combined Authority and Dynamo North East to develop and launch the talent engine project, aimed at raising the profile of digital careers within our HQ region. These collaborative initiatives are all gathering pace.”

Prediction 10: firms that greenwash will be found out – Mike O’Brien, co-founder

Mike's verdict: “I talked about greenwashing and firms claiming to care about diversity. There’s been a groundswell of public and media questioning the claims that industry and governments make. There’s certainly been a significant amount of attention paid to the World Cup in Qatar which claims to be ‘net zero’.”

Read our team's 2022 predictions – and look out for our 2023 predictions to come!

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