Posted by Eric O. Schueler, Senior V.P. of Information Technology
Technology trends for 2016 are all over the news thanks to the annual Consumer Electronic Show (CES) and the fact we’re in a new year. From Virtual Reality to Internet of Things (IoT), tech buzzwords are flying around and everyone has an opinion, so to make it easier, I’ve put together a list of the top tech trends for 2016 for business IT and computers technology.
Top Tech Trends for 2016
- Internet of Things (IoT): Mobile phones, wearables including smart watches and other items transmitting data to each other will only increase in 2016, the year of the Internet of Things. Business implications for this hot trend include being able to anticipate customers’ needs due to the mass of data transmitted that will provide real-time analytics. This change will lead to a more productive workforce and greater connectivity between companies and customers.
- Wearables: Although usage is expected to rise, not a lot of companies are embracing wearables for their employees. That could change in 2016 for employees not tethered to a desk. DHL said its productivity increased by 25% when handlers in the shipping department of a pilot program wore smart glasses. Juniper’s Holden says smart glasses are likely the first wearables adopted by companies but others may follow such as a hands-free device attached to the arm that would allow medical professionals to converse while working in a sterile environment.
- Mobile is essential: Mobile and responsive design websites are more important today than ever before since a large number of people use their mobile phones for everything. If fact, more than half of searches on Google occurred on a mobile device in 2015. Mobile payments are becoming the norm and location-based services will increase in 2016 with more customers receiving targeted offers based on where they are currently. Mobile and responsive design have become vital to search engine optimization rankings.
- BYOD: Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) will increase by 20% worldwide in 2016 and is now becoming more mainstream. Having a BYOD policy in place will help protect your company and your data. It is believed that CFOs and CIOs will become the primary decision makers in developing a BYOD program. Due to increased BYOD employees, there will also be increased class action lawsuits regarding mobile reimbursements.
- Cloud Computing: Due to the Internet of Things increasing to over 6 billion connected things in 2016, the cloud will become more important than ever because without it, there would be no connection. Cloud computing will go beyond a means of saving money and allowing employees to work remotely to enabling the workforce to do things previously undoable. Cloud Computing will allow businesses to quickly and efficiently adapt their business model to suit customer needs more rapidly than ever before.
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Document Management more mobile: Making CRM and Document Management more mobile and in the cloud will allow employees to work remotely. Ultimately, being able to access remotely will make employees more efficient and more readily available to meet customer needs. In 2016, both CRM and Document Management will be further enhanced and allow more collaboration between coworkers and between in the field workforce and the company.
- User experience: Companies that want to get and retain customers will look at their user experience via mobile or applications in 2016. Regardless of how much work your company puts into the mobile site or application, it should still be easy and quick for customers to get the information they need. Likewise, companies need to think about or ask their customers what they need in order to have the best user experience possible.
- Cybercrime and Cyber Security: With the Internet of Things (IoT), Wi-Fi everywhere and everyone using a mobile device, the likely occurrence of a cybercrime is increased. Analysts believe that in 2016, ransomware will be the main threat. Ransomware is when a hacker gets into your system to perform data encryption and then will demand a ransom to decrypt the data. This threat is especially worrisome for enterprises because their data is critical for their company’s day-to-day operations and can be ransomed for more money. Network and VoIP Security will be essential to protect your and your customers’ data for 2016.
- Real-time data analytics: With all the connectivity from the Internet of Things, company decisions may be based more on analytics in 2016 than ever before. With the availability of real-time analytics, companies that once relied upon intuition will be able to access customer information in the blink of an eye and more accurately determine what the customer will need in the future.
- Virtual Reality for businesses: Virtual Reality has been a buzzword since the 90s, but if CES is anything to go by, it might be more of a reality in 2016. Virtual Reality has uses beyond gaming and could be beneficial to businesses. Human Resources could eventually interview potential employees “face to face” without actually being in the same room. Right now, many companies already use Skype for Business or FaceTime to interview. Employees could attend conferences without leaving town, or your company could have a meeting with everyone regardless of where they are located. Other uses could involve touring a business, training new employees, detailed views of a product and testing products.
2016 should be an exciting year for technology in IT and computers for businesses. How your company implements new technology is up to you, but staying up to date on the latest trends is a good way to know how these trends may impact your business.
If you don’t have the time, training or desire, let HRCT take care of your technology with our Managed Services program. Call today to speak with a technology specialist.
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Posted by Eric O. Schueler, A+, MCP, MCSE, MCTS, CSSA, ACSP – Senior V.P. of Information Technology at HRCT. Eric has been in the business of providing IT and consulting for small and medium business for more than 15 years.
Hampton Roads Communication Technologies (HRCT) provides quality business telecommunications solutions, like Microsoft Lync and Office 365, computer and IT support and managed service agreements to companies and organizations throughout the United States, Mid-Atlantic and the Hampton Roads Virginia cities of Virginia Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Newport News and Hampton, north into Williamsburg and south into the Outer Banks of North Carolina. HRCT keeps your company connected with 24/7 emergency service.
Call today. (757) 399-3350
Sources:business2community.com, bbc.com, entrepreneur.com, computerworld.com, syntonic.com, bizreport.com, forbes.com
Images courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net by Hywards (network), Adamr (cell phone), and Anusorn Pnachol (computer security)