As we noted in our last post, organizations have relied heavily on technology in order to adapt and respond to the myriad operational challenges of the past two years. In the process, they’ve often exposed some long-simmering difficulties.
In part two of our post, we identify more of the challenges that will drive IT’s agenda in the coming year.
- Legacy applications have limits. Many companies rely on decades-old applications that support critical business processes, but the inflexibility of those apps make it difficult to adapt to sudden changes. Legacy apps designed for a specific operating system or network setup often are not compatible with newer systems and they typically can’t handle multiple simultaneous remote connections due to limited processing capacity. Driven by the need to support remote and hybrid workforces, companies are working to modernize and cloud-enable legacy apps or replace them entirely if necessary.
- Cloud security remains widely misunderstood. Organizations are shifting more workloads to the cloud without a clear understanding of the security measures they must take. Surveys indicate there is still widespread confusion about the cloud’s shared responsibility security model. In general, cloud providers are responsible for securing the cloud infrastructure while customers must protect their data and applications within the cloud. To minimize risk, companies must implement solid backup and data protection capabilities for their cloud portfolios.
- Disaster planning requires new focus. The pandemic has provided a stark reminder of the need for well-conceived and frequently tested business continuity/disaster recovery (BC/DR) plans. Conventional plans that focused on restoring functions following a short-term disruption proved highly inadequate for a long-term health crisis. The experience has forced organizations to rethink plans with a focus on remote network access, cloud management and supply chain resilience.
- Cyber insurance is becoming a necessity. Analysts say there were more than 700 million ransomware attacks in 2021, a 130 percent increase over 2020, and the average recovery costs ballooned to $1.85 million. Seventy percent of these attacks target small and midsize enterprises that simply don’t have the resources to absorb that kind of financial loss. Cyber insurance policies provide a hedge against direct ransomware losses, as well as any legal liability, regulatory fines or lost income that result from an attack.
- Remote workers need faster IT support. Remote workers often have to operate as their own IT support staff, but they frequently encounter problems they can’t resolve themselves. Recent surveys show that the average remote worker experienced hundreds of technology problems last year but often had to wait more than three hours to get help. More organizations report they plan to work with managed services providers to ensure more timely support and help remote workers remain productive and efficient.
In truth, many of these challenges have existed for years — they’ve actually been driving digital transformation initiatives for the better part of the past decade. It’s just that pandemic-driven changes to operations have forced companies to accelerate their timeline for making improvements and enhancements. If your organization will be addressing some of these issues in 2022, give us a call. We’d welcome the opportunity to describe how our portfolio of tested solutions can help you achieve your goals.
January 7, 2022