Next industry facing a turnaround - how technology trends affect three industries

Panelists  Björn Rydberg, Kevin Quincey and Pia Hardy (from left to right)

On Tuesday 20 February, Niklas Körling, Partner at Wistrand Advokatbyrå, hosted a TMA Sweden event at his office. The topic for the evening was Next industry for a turnaround – Digital disruptors. The panelists starting by giving a short perspective each: Kevin Quincey, Strategy Director with InfoPlanIT, started off with pointing out some digital disruptions happening around us right now. Kevin specifically highlighted that it is not just businesses digitizing and “bricks-and- mortar” companies being challenged in existing industries, the industry landscape is also changing and morphing: Amazon is growing from a shopping website into delivery and could services and Uber is not only challenging taxi companies around the globe, but moving into autonomous driving. Other trends, like Internet of Things is opening up for a lot more data security threats among other things hacking intelligent devices and Artificial Intelligence is transforming traditional white collar tasks into automated ones, e.g. legal work. Kevin highlighted that all industries will be affected and all companies need to form an opinion on where
the opportunities and threats will be.

Pia Hardy, Associate Partner McKinsey & Company, talked specifically about healthcare. There are 3 major trends that will materialize in the next 10 years:
1. Healthcare will become increasingly unaffordable. Today it accounts for 10% of GDP in Sweden
and in 15 years it will be 13% of GDP. This may not look like a large number, but the difference is
equal to the total spend on education in Sweden today.
2. Healthcare will become increasingly possible – technology will push the limits on what is
possible and technology will also become more affordable.
3. There will be increased demands from patients – wanting healthcare “here” and “now”.

Through the research that McKinsey & Company has done, Pia emphasized that there is a SEK 180 billion potential in digital opportunities for healthcare in Sweden to be captured until 2025. The short time horizon, means that the technology is available today and can be captured. Reinvesting this potential in healthcare itself could have a profound impact in ensuring that increased quality of healthcare could also become affordable. The largest barriers to making this change happen are the legal environment (e.g. GDPR) as well as financial incentives and breaking through traditional healthcare budgets.

Björn Rydberg Executive Director at EY and authorized Public Accountant, works in the interface
between Financial processes and IT processes. He sees a lot happening right now in how these processes are being automated. This leads to automated accounting and robots doing a lot of the routine tasks. This will have profound impact on accountants and auditors – skills will be different as advanced analytics will gain ground, the need for junior staff will be different and the varying demand for auditing staff leads to more use of temporary staff. At the same time, the quality of the output increases; where samples were being used, robots and advanced analytics can today analyze complete data sets. Björn sees this leading to more value-added discussions and to improvements in business practices.

The panelists then took a number of questions from the audience. Asked about what industries to really look out for in terms of need of transformation the conclusion was Retail (Kevin), Healthcare (Pia) and Auditing (Björn). The panelists were thanked with a large applause before Niklas invited us all to enjoy the hospitality of Wistrand with some drinks and bites. Judging from the discussion over wine and beer, the panel debate had opened up for further interesting conversations.