Looking ahead to Cloud IT in 2021
2020 was an unusual year and presented challenges for many, both on an individual and business level. At Extech Cloud, it was a year where we reaffirmed our sense of purpose, helping to connect people and support business through innovative use of the cloud. But what may lie ahead in 2021?
This year, we certainly considered ourselves among the fortunate. Cloud IT services were in demand. Many businesses previously resistant to flexible working or working from home, now had to implement these measures out of necessity due to Covid-19 restrictions, taking the fast track to the Modern Workplace.
Meanwhile, those already undergoing digital transformation were able to continue the process of moving their applications into the cloud, finding more secure, connected, and efficient ways of working.
As a result, we helped many businesses to keep going during 2020, not only surviving, but thriving. Many with employees that are happier than ever.
Moving into 2021, we find that Covid-19 is not yet behind us and continues to present challenges for traditional IT infrastructures in many businesses. So, supporting our customers with their continuing needs for working from home, as well as the evolving requirements of their business, and customers, will continue to be a focus.
Michael Frisby, Managing Director for Vuzion, recently published an article that we felt captured some important learnings to bear in mind in 2021. So, we’ve compiled the highlights below.
There are 10 key areas he believes will provide big opportunities.
- Secure, flexible remote working solutions through modern cloud-based services will be key to helping businesses adapt and be able to continue to provide services to their own customers. Central to this is Microsoft 365.
- IT Security remains top of the buying agenda for most businesses and providing security solutions for users working outside the office is a major opportunity for IT providers.
- End-user education is about advising on how to use and be productive with the new tools that enable flexible remote working, as well as security. This will help customers gain value more quickly from their new IT systems.
- Microsoft Teams has seen explosive growth, with the number of active daily users having increased from 20m to over 115m in the space of a year. Teams is not only a platform for communication and remote collaboration, but a platform for streamlining business processes and to reduce cost and create new experiences for customers.
- Enabling employees to speak with customers was one of the biggest challenges facing businesses during lockdown. We will continue to see the demand for cloud telephony take centre stage in the next few years.
- Modern IT infrastructure – The ability to access internal systems whilst away from the office has become critical, and on-premises servers and applications are now lagging compared to the move to cloud productivity
- Cost optimisation for new cloud services is central to the successful move of customers to the public cloud and continuing to monitor and manage the optimisation of these solutions critical to helping customers keep services as efficient and costs as low as possible.
- Supporting users in multiple locations is something we have been doing effectively for years. As the workforce disperses to their homes and other remote locations, more businesses will need help in supporting those users effectively through new outsourced managed services.
- The traditional IT managed service is turned on its head. Looking after end-users and on-premises servers can no longer be delivered by going ‘on-site’. Modern cloud-based solutions that support users and services wherever they are, need to become the norm.
- Keeping the culture of the business strong when teams are not all together in the office will continue to be a significant challenge. A lot of innovation and experimentation is expected as businesses seek to keep their teams engaged.
As Michael Frisby summarised Perhaps one of the key lessons to take from the events of 2020 when looking forward, is to recognise that life – and the world of business – can change overnight, and that IT providers need to be supporting customers to be able to face challenges with as little disruption as possible, whatever happens.
Contact us now to talk to one of our experts about how we can best support you during 2021. Call 01444 443200 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
With thanks to Michael Frisby at Vuzion for permitting us to re-publish part of the original article: Predictions for success in 2021. Learn more about Vuzion.
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