Top Five IT Trends Heading Up Technology Enablement in 2018

November 10, 2017   //   Managed Services Optimize IT, ,

As 2018 approaches, IT decision-makers are busy planning their initiatives for the coming year. Advancements in digital technology have brought about considerable business opportunities, while at the same time putting greater pressure on IT leaders to stay ahead of existing and emerging trends.

What digital changes are you prioritizing in 2018? Here are our predictions for the top 5 IT trends that are heading up technology enablement in the coming year.

Prioritizing Innovation

Given the importance of technology today, businesses will need to reorganize the limitations of traditional IT to innovate and improve their business models, products, services and customer experiences. Besides having a very effective IT organization that can speak the same language as the business, IT leaders will need to empower the entire company to think differently, learn new technologies faster, and work more collaboratively together. To maintain a competitive footing, we’re seeing a shift where IT is embracing a leadership approach that embodies a continuous cycle of innovation.

Rapid Implementation

For years, we’ve been talking about strategies for “migrating to the cloud.” As 2018 approaches, the conversation is no longer about getting to the cloud, it’s about leveraging business opportunities by virtue of already being in the cloud. This will require IT leaders to develop strategies around how to continuously integrate new sources of growth as new solutions and capabilities are regularly released in the cloud, all the while preventing any delays or misstep in implementing evolving technologies along the way.

Security in the Cloud

The debate is over – the cloud is secure. In fact, many organizations have discovered the cloud is more secure than what they can provide internally. While the cloud can reduce the overall security scope of traditional IT, it doesn’t eliminate the responsibility altogether – it changes it. New advancements in technology will continue to open new methods to exploit weakness. Attackers are looking for the path of least resistance and most often their opportunity comes when your users mistakenly facilitate an infiltration through a phishing email. This makes empowering users to recognize threats and educating them on security protocols one of the most important initiatives moving into 2018.

ROI Justification

Today’s evolving digital landscape comes with agile possibilities to change course, making it difficult to justify the value of any given technology investment – particularly when traditional budgeting practices don’t have the flexibility to accommodate bursts of innovation that occur more frequently in the cloud. In order justify IT spend that aligns with the business, companies will need to shift their budgeting mindset. ROI is no longer just about dollars; it’s about time-saving labor and closing security gaps. Organizations need to shift their mindset from viewing IT as a cost center to considering IT an investment in the organization’s future.

Acquiring and Retaining Talent

In the past, IT professionals had the capacity to learn and stay up to date with the systems that are critical to running the business. However, the diversity of skills required, the need for real-time expertise, and the acceleration in the deployment of new solutions in the cloud has made the traditional “jack-of-all-trades, master of none” model unsustainable for today’s businesses. To further complicate the issue, it is increasingly difficult for mid-market businesses to vet specialized skills without a background in technologies that have only recently matured. For many organizations, seeking external IT partnerships to help provide coverage for the depth and breadth of responsibilities and skillsets will become an essential component of modern IT management 2018.

While keeping pace in a cloud-first world can feel like an uphill battle, the good news is you don’t have to go at it alone. SWC’s award-winning Managed Services team can help organization develop cost-effective, flexible, cloud-first solutions that meet the growing demands of the business today. Contact us to learn more.

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