It is hard to believe we are more than a month into 2021 already! By now, we are all too familiar with the new normal, and can see how many of our new behaviours are helping to rapidly drive technology and business innovation. We can expect that technology development influenced by COVID-19 will evolve during this year.
By forcing us from our routines, the pandemic has prompted a re-examination of the way we live and work, and how we mix life and work together.
And with the boundary between the physical and virtual worlds rapidly disappearing, we keep learning how we can use technology to reimagine the workplace and create more human experiences.
After reading this local article on 10 trends to watch in 2021, we took a couple minutes to consider how prepared Geek Managed Services is for the opportunities and challenges that may arise this year:
Cloud is King! Cloud computing has become mainstream. Organisations will need to adopt and embrace the cloud for upgrading their infrastructure. Organisations will be building solutions on top of the platforms they have built on cloud and mobile options. The adoption of cloud computing is still growing, as more and more businesses migrate to a cloud solution. Even from our days as Geek Patrol we could see the Cloud Revolution coming. Our new brand and business strategy is proudly cloud-first, and we've been delighted by our clients' reception to cloud services like Microsoft 365.
Cybersecurity Expertise & Initiatives Security initiatives are being shaped and guided by cybersecurity practices and business would need to be redefined around security. New technology is being adapted to enhance security. As long as we have hackers, cybersecurity will remain a trending technology because it will constantly evolve to defend against those hackers. The ongoing news around the world's largest tech companies proves that information is one of the most valuable commodities today. The more empowered we become by internet-based services, the more vulnerable we all are to entities with malicious intent. New technology is constantly being adapted to enhance security and proactively keep businesses and consumers protected.
Data Protection and Privacy We increasingly rely on technologies that collect our data and use it to make decisions about us: newsfeeds, online stores and dating apps. This reliance only increased during the pandemic, as we did more and more things online – like grocery shopping and doctor visits – that we used to do in person. This coming year will see the mass adoption of customer-first, privacy software bundles as more and more people realise that free products come with significant liabilities. And with South Africa set to implement its landmark Protection of Personal Information Act (POPIA), CIOs are under pressure to ensure that their data management systems and processes are ready. Organisations of all sizes are forced to get proactive. Watch out for our upcoming webinar on what you can do to prepare, or feel free to contact us directly.
Expansion of remote working This area has seen rapid growth during the pandemic and will continue growing in 2021. Every business will need to have clarity on your work-from-home model and policy as many of our staff have already become accustomed to this mode of working to manage costs. Before the pandemic, we noticed a clear difference in how people were using home Wi-Fi on weekdays versus weekends. Now many people are working, learning, and keeping everyone entertained from home seven days a week. For us, this means making sure that connectivity is guaranteed along with the required endpoint security.
Online Services & Products This remains as the new normal with an increase in preference for contactless operations and no contact delivery (even my local convenience store is on Uber Eats!). COVID-19 has accelerated the need for new payment methods like mobile wallets, contactless payments, buy now pay later and instalment methods. Online shopping will continue to grow rapidly even post the COVID-19 pandemic. Customer experience and the seamless resolution of queries is already a major differentiator of brand loyalty and business sustainability. This requires investment into the right technology without adding confusion and complexity. To help you keep up with the increase in consumer demand for contactless purchasing and payments, we've expanded our business offerings and team to include website and eCommerce solutions.
Increased availability of internet infrastructure We were excited to hear President Ramaphosa announce in his 2021 State of the Nation address that the Lanseria Smart City, the first new city to be built in a democratic South Africa, is now a reality in the making. And with a demand for high-speed internet within homes, 5G services are expected to revolutionise our lives. Our connectivity solutions & services continue to be sought after amongst business and home clients alike.
2021 will be a year of recovery, and the IT industry is poised to rebuild for a better and brighter future.
How has your industry responded to the new normal? We'd love to know how technology empowers your business strategy for the year.