2015 IT Business Trends That Are Here to Stay
2015 turned out to be the harbinger of radical change in how business is done. Almost all of that change radiated outward from IT.
There were several IT and business trends emerging last year, and many will be business staples this year. It’s important to look back on 2015 with an eye toward where your organization now stands with regard to these key business functions.
Business Trends Impact IT Services
Several business trends made their mark in 2015 but will continue to expand in the year ahead. Three of the major concepts are:
Comprehensive Support Services
IT support went from a piecemeal offering to a holistic approach wherein a different set of metrics, deliverables and stakeholders came into play. The point was to connect the dots between disparate IT operations and systems and business lines to improve customer outcomes. Integration of people, systems and data was at the heart of this movement and will remain the very lifeblood of business for years to come.
Continued Growth of the Internet of Things
The Internet of Things (IoT) added a new dimension of business possibilities. These prospects range from gaining more data-driven insights to leveraging the ability to predict and therefore prevent problems. To match this, IT upped its game in remote management, analytics and automation.
This new mode of proactive and predictive behaviors had to be integrated into the larger business picture. Because IoT was the new frontier, IT also had to sharpen its people skills to secure line-of-business support. But this is only the beginning; IoT will pack an increasingly bigger punch in the years ahead.
The Importance of DevOps
DevOps also moved directly to center stage as companies eagerly sought to extract value from IT and speed time to production for software-driven data center management. Data center managers honed their skills in order to manage the software-driven data center. But they must continue to learn in 2016 since new DevOps initiatives will likely need analytics and automation skills to support the effort.
The Data Center Reimagined
For decades, IT’s sole focus was cutting costs and increasing efficiency. Many IT leaders with strong skills in coding and software or hardware development had to set them aside and go with standardized products instead.
But in this new competitive world, business trends such as personalized customer care and real-time data holds sway — and IT skills are once again aimed at innovation. Reimagining the data center rather than simply maintaining the status quo becomes the new goal.
Hybrid infrastructures evolved as the ultimate answer to the cloud versus on-premises debate. The hybrid cloud offers the most flexibility, agility, speed and security of either of the choices. Because of these strong advantages, the hybrid cloud is likely to reign supreme for the foreseeable future.
Trends Improve Enterprise Resiliency
Another trend, digital business, proved the impetus for the cloud and the hybrid cloud. Prebuilt, cloud-based subscription services and readily available APIs speed time to production. They also enable IT to mix, match and integrate technologies at will, at low costs and often on the fly.
In this way, IT can quickly respond to business needs and realign services as needed. This is crucial during a crisis. Fast actions on the part of IT can increase the efficacy of a business continuity plan, reduce downtime and prevent damage from striking the enterprise.
It isn’t enough to realign and respond to business needs alone. Today, IT leaders are charged with spurring innovation both within the IT department and for the business at large. 2015 saw the rebirth of CIOs and IT leaders as a business force in their own right. These professionals will continue to guide businesses forward in 2016.