By Lee Wrall, Director, Managed Services Provider, Everything Tech
As businesses look ahead to 2022, I.T. will become even more centric their needs.
When the pandemic hit and the world was forced to go even more online, businesses learned that having a robust I.T. infrastructure was key as it helped them become nimble and adapt in ways that many hadn’t comprehended. Whether you were an SME or a big corporate giant, I.T. suddenly became the focus and we all had to lean on technology to carry out the day to day. Now we have all settled into the ‘new’ way of working and become more used to ‘The Cloud’ and Teams calls, I outline some key trends that will impact companies in 2022.
- Cyber Security
Cyber attacks are expected to double by 2025* so this is a topic that isn’t going to go away.
Whether you are a business or an individual, everyone understands that the number of cyber-threats is increasing. But, also, the nature of these threats are becoming more elaborate and sophisticated. As I mentioned in the intro, as everyone is online more, so are the criminals.
The basics really need to be in place to secure your business against attacks. Rights Management is an effective way to control access to files and documents that could have sensitive information on them. Two-Factor Authentication should also be applied to certain files within your server, which will ensure that if someone does try to access a particular sensitive file, the system will send a text or email instantly to the person who is supposed to be accessing the file to ensure it is them.
These practices are simple to apply but present a strong level of defence against any cyber-attacks. One of the most effective ways to combat cyber-attacks is by implementing continual learning and training for all staff. As the nature of attacks are constantly changing, employees need to be made aware of these techniques and stay up to date in order to keep your business safe.
- Business Continuity
Leading on from the above point on Cyber-attacks, every business should have in place a business continuity plan (BCP). This is a document that outlines the processes on how a business will operate should it experience some disruption, such as a cyber-attack. Plans will outline disaster recovery procedures as well detailed strategies on now the business will operate in the short and long term.
- Work Portal Integration
Working from home, hybrid working and flexible working has meant a rise in the workforce accessing and sharing documents remotely. Because of the nature of lockdown, staff turned to whatever system they were familiar with to carry on doing their job. Teams, Zoom, Google Docs, Dropbox, Wetransfer and more, all of a sudden employees were using a mix of these to do their job.
Going forward into 2022, there needs to be standardisation and integration to ensure businesses are secure from cyber-attacks. Microsoft Teams, for example, is developing its platform to become a hub to conduct all business through, with Teams, Sharepoint and now Viva, which acts like an internal intranet to allow employees to share company information. Choosing one secure portal and ensuring staff use it as the place to communicate will ensure your business is more secure in 2022.
- Office Culture
Office culture has massively suffered over the past two years, with a large proportion of teams working remotely some, or even all of the time. And many believe a hybrid approach to work will grow, with recent statistics revealing that 61.5% of people would like to work in a hybrid fashion and over a quarter would like to work remotely all of the time.
As such, in 2022, business leaders will need to consider how to embed their culture amongst teams that are not necessarily working side-by-side on a daily basis. Importantly, with recruitment of talent becoming a major challenge for many industries, culture will play a critical role in attracting and retaining employees, so businesses will need to ensure new hires can ‘feel’ the culture of the company they have joined.
- Staff Engagement
Collaboration and communication will become more important than ever, and alongside culture, businesses will need to find a way to replace those water cooler chats we have all taken for granted over the years. With flexibility in working staying, I.T will play a crucial part in helping bring employees together, so they feel incorporated into a team and work culture is developed on and offline.