Future Planning

At Shaping Tomorrow, we help individuals, organisations, and businesses develop their future planning through the use of Athena, our AI system, which surveys over 80,000 reputable internet and social media sources for evidence of change. We can then provide companies with insight into how to adapt their future policies, products and services based on the evidence we find.

Future planning is important because it allows you to:

  • Identify opportunities for growth and progression
  • Make and act on your decisions at the right time
  • Plan your organisation’s business strategy
  • Balance objectives
  • Keep ahead of market developments
  • Better prepare for what’s coming

Future planning allows you to take into account all possible outcomes and develop a plan of action accordingly. This is especially important in today's rapidly changing business landscape with new technologies and emerging trends constantly evolving, it's essential to be able to predict what's coming next and adapt your plans accordingly.


Foresight methodology

Foresight methodology is the process used to gather information and make sense of it so that people can structure their future planning. The result can then be used to inform policy, develop strategy, act on opportunities, mitigate threats and transform in a timely manner.

Those companies who spot new issues early and exploit them have a competitive advantage over less-prepared competitors. A recent report by American multinational financial services company Wells Fargo, identified that "international expansion is needed for long-term growth, with emerging markets providing the greatest opportunities".

Being aware of what is about to happen, and getting that time to react is vital for competitive advantage..


Foresight tools and techniques

Access to foresight tools and techniques like the Shaping Tomorrow AI tool is vital for being able to plan for the future, spot future trends and opportunities and identify where the areas for competitive advantage lie.

At Shaping Tomorrow our foresight tools provide future planning trends on a wide-range of topics, including democracy, gender, homes, migration, nature, population, trade and many more. The foresight techniques are either inbuilt or an extension of our work with you.

For businesses and organisations who want more detailed information specific to their industry, you can also search our AI tool for any subject area of interest to your business to see what more than 200,000 experts, influencers, think-tanks and information pundits from around the world have been publishing about this topic. For example, if you are looking for insight into the future of energy companies, then a search for this in our foresight tool returns the following information:

Future Planning - Energy Sector

In addition to the news feed, the results are also made available in a toolkit of presentations and reports, allowing you to easily digest the data generated and consider how best to protect your business or organisation. The presentation of this information, straight out of the system, is suitable for internal or external business presentations.


Below is an example of a report generated from a search for ‘energy companies’:

Future Planning - World Outlook

However, identifying this information is only the first step, businesses then need to apply foresight thinking to capitalise on the competitive advantage this data brings them.


Foresight thinking

Forecasting and future planning tools can give you a competitive edge by providing you with data that can help you make better decisions. Foresight thinking is the process of using this data to anticipate changes in your industry and plan for them. There are several ways of using the data generated by the Shaping Tomorrow AI, including:

Creating scenarios

One way to use foresight thinking is to create scenarios. Scenarios are hypothetical situations that help you think about how different events could play out. This can help you identify possible risks and opportunities. For example, if you are in the manufacturing industry, you might create scenarios about how new technology could affect your business. You can then make decisions on the future of your business, based on the likelihood of these scenarios and the level of impact it would have on your business if they were to come true.

Trend planning

Future planning tools are great for identifying trends, which you can then anticipate how these changes might impact your business and plan for them. For example, if you see that there is a trend towards more environmentally-friendly products, you might decide to launch a new line of eco-friendly products yourself, or switch to environmentally-friendly suppliers so that you can reposition yourself as an eco-friendly business, etc.

Strategy creation

Foresight thinking can also help you develop strategies for dealing with uncertainty. For example, if you know that there is a risk that a major customer could leave your business as a result of a competitor embracing new technologies, you might develop a strategy for diversifying your customer base or adopting the new technology. 

Can the Shaping Tomorrow team add anything else here about practical ways the data generated can be used to make decisions?


What people say about our future planning services

"The ST team has done a wonderful job expanding the utility of foresight in faster and more insightful ways. They have been a trendsetter in developing innovative approaches to trends mining and implications analysis. As impressively, the team shares their insights and findings freely in a display of commitment to the future seldom seen and rarely practiced. Thanks for all you do and achieve, ST team!"
Anonymous client / Education Sector

"OCR commissioned Shaping Tomorrow to conduct a future planning exercise looking at the future of training and assessment in 2030. The project was awarded to Shaping Tomorrow in part because of their automated scanning facility which drove down costs of traditional manual research methodology and considerably shortened turnaround. As a not for profit organisation it was extremely important that we got high-quality strategic insight at the lowest cost possible. The work inspired the team to think more strategically and holistically at the longer-term drivers and influences affecting our strategic plans and the approach used for scenario planning was a masterclass in a systematic strategic analysis. Not only did the project deliver quality outputs on time but the added value of the embedded consultancy and licences produced a lasting legacy beyond the completion of the project."
Emily Almeida-King, Strategy Manager, OCR

"The development of the consulting and management firm, Shaping Tomorrow stands out in the foresight and planning area as a unique opportunity for public and private sector companies, governments and similar organisations to look critically at their current and future directions in a rapidly changing world moved by the increasing access of ICT's globally."
Anonymous client / Government Sector

No one can predict the future with 100% certainty, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't plan for it. If you would like to find out more about our future planning services, then please contact us using the form below: