Press release

The Rise of Virtual Offices, New Technology Hubs & Automated Recruitment Tools Lead Nucleus Research’s Top 10 Technology Predictions for 2021

Sponsored by Businesswire

Nearing the close of a year that has been anything but normal, Nucleus Research today looked ahead to 2021, unveilings its analysts’ Top 10 Technology Predictions for the coming year. In this, the 17th edition of the firm’s countdown of tech’s projected winners and losers for the coming year, Nucleus looks into the pandemic’s long-term impact on in-person office spaces and traditional technology hubs as well as the prospects for low-code development platforms and planning solutions and calls for the rebranding of CRM to CX.

“Our 2021 predictions reflect the latest trends that we expect will impact our clients in the coming year,” said Ian Campbell, CEO of Nucleus Research. “After a tumultuous year filled with a series of unexpected events, we expect that 2021 will see many of the long-term technology and business implications of the pandemic come to fruition. Based on our analysis of market forces and end user experiences, our Top 10 predictions have an accuracy record of over 94 percent and help our clients make better decisions each year.”

Nucleus Research’s top 10 predictions for 2021 look at opportunities and pitfalls based on the numbers that drive business. Publishing more ROI case studies than any other research firm in the industry, Nucleus works closely with thousands of end-user customers to provide an accurate picture of tomorrow’s trends through a numbers-driven approach.

For the past 17 years, Nucleus’ annual technology predictions have been 94 % accurate — unmatched by any other leading technology prognosticator — based on the firm’s analysis and application of historical data.

Nucleus’ predictions for 2021 include:

  • The Best Laid Plans: The transition to work from home, delayed deals and business closures have fractured the budgets, plans, and forecasts of supply chain, finance, and HR teams. Nucleus predicts that FP&A, HCM, and SCM solution providers that recognize the importance for greater scenario planning functionality will benefit from the uptick in demand.
  • Business-Level Users Can Do It All: Both iPaaS solutions and low-code development platforms will see increased growth rates as organizations begin to realize that less skilled workers can achieve the same business and application development success as developers, given the correct tools.
  • The Rise of the Virtual Office: The rise of remote work and better ways to measure employee productivity mean the office is no longer a container for employees, but rather a gathering place for innovation and inspiration. We expect to see fewer spaces dedicated to specific employees with more shared team spaces used only a few days a week to augment remote work.
  • The Fall of the “Old” Tech Hubs: When an employee can work remotely, why would anyone subject themselves to the terrible commutes of Boston or the congestion of New York City? Workforce management and talent management are two technology areas poised to benefit from this mass exodus of tech workers to new technology hubs like Raleigh and Miami.
  • CRM will Morph into CX Industry-Wide: In recent years, vendors have looked to integrate sales, marketing and service solutions more tightly so as to capture and track the full spectrum of engagements with a customer or prospect. As vendors realize the necessity of differentiating the experiences offered to customers, creating more seamless and tightly integrated solutions that capture all relevant touchpoints is critical.
  • Manage with Managed Services: Managed services are expected to grow considerably in 2021 as outsourcing administrative tasks through managed services not only reduces strain on staff, but allows organizations to cut labor costs by avoiding hires amidst an unpredictable labor market.
  • Payroll Goes Global: Nucleus expects that HCM vendors will begin touting the “frictionless” integrations of their ever-expanding global payroll solutions. As the outlook for the global economy remains uncertain, international organizations of all sizes will face an increased need for greater payroll visibility across global locations and lead more organizations to adopt global pay solutions.
  • Robot Recruiting: The increased prevalence of automated sourcing tools, chatbots and asynchronous interviews have significantly reduced recruiter time spent completing menial tasks, allowing them to rededicate effort to bottom-of-the-funnel activities and find best-fit candidates for given positions. This will remain critical in 2021 as candidate engagement becomes a top concern.
  • I Want It and I Want It Now: Shoppers around the world were forced indoors as pandemic regulations shuttered brick-and-mortar locations. We expect a continued push across B2B and B2C segments to modernize their e-commerce sales channels and seek out CPQ solutions to manage their product mixes and pricing.
  • Adventure by Numbers: COVID-19 lends credence to Robert Burn’s famous line, “the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” So, with the uncertainty continuing into 2021, we’ve decided to leave this one blank – because sometimes reality is too crazy for words.

For the full 2021 Technology Predictions report, visit:

About Nucleus Research

Nucleus Research is a global provider of investigative, case-based technology research and advisory services. The company’s ROI-focused research approach provides unique insight into the actual results technology solutions deliver, allowing organizations to cut through marketing hype to understand real operational value and select or renew the best technology solution for their environment. For more information, visit