Technology Trends In 2020
2020 will undoubtedly be the most memorable year for many of us. Pandemic, social movements, Presidential Election, and it capped off with one of the largest technology acquisitions in history when Salesforce paid $27.7 billion for Slack. 2020 has been a loaded year whose impact will be studied for years to come. So, what are the big trends in technology from 2020 that you should be aware of?
You’re Still On Mute
Zoom became part of everyone’s vocabulary. And so did Zoom fatigue. The mass introduction of video conferencing shows the possibilities to connect with anyone around the world. This trend opens the door for more dynamic calls with capabilities like screen sharing, chat, surveys, and more. There are a lot of benefits to video calls. If you’ve got a question for a colleague or client, having a quick video call can resolve the issue faster than trading emails and cut down on commuting time. But again, the human factor can’t be ignored. Most people who work for small businesses choose to because they feel more personal than larger companies. On one hand, video calls opened up possibilities; they also highlighted the importance of personal connections in business.
Work From Anywhere
The true impact of Work From Anywhere on small businesses is yet to be seen. The impact for large, office-based companies was immediate and drastic. Active buildings became vacant almost overnight. Most companies adopted and made work from anywhere, well, work. A survey by the international consulting firm, PWC, shows that the interest in remote work when COVID-19 is no longer a concern is mixed. There was early speculation that remote-first workforces would become the norm. However, the PWC survey shows that only 32% of employees want to be completely remote; while “72% say they’d like to work away from the office for at least two days a week.” The survey also showed that people who only worked remotely one day or less a week before COVID intend to return to that pattern when it’s deemed safe.
Interest in working from anywhere may be high, but it also opens interesting challenges to employers. Many companies are turning to cloud solutions to help.
Cloud Computing Technology
Moving to the cloud was a growing trend before 2020. This year has brought greater attention and interest to cloud computing. In a survey of IT professionals by IDG, 59% said their organization would be 100% cloud-based in 18 months. What’s driving the trend towards the cloud? Eric Knorr of InfoWorld says, “Not necessarily cost savings… The real benefits of cloud computing are in agility, scalability, and future potential.” To meet these goals and capture the benefits of the cloud, companies are looking to specialists to design and manage their cloud environments.
So what is cloud computing? An easy way to think of it is like a safety deposit box at a bank vs. a home safe. Rather than investing in a home safe, you pay a service fee for a safety deposit box at a bank. You choose the size and quantity box to suit your needs. You set guidelines for who can access it. As your needs change you can add or remove space and access with ease. Cloud computing works similarly. Rather than have an on-premise server for computing and storage, you partner with a cloud provider to manage your computing and data needs. While this simplified analogy provides an understanding of cloud computing, it only scratches the surface of what cloud computing offers.
For most organizations, cloud computing is about data storage and access. However, when we start to get more involved with the cloud it opens up countless opportunities for seamless integrations. Virtually all subscription-based software uses cloud computing. If you’ve connected any of those services to another, you’re beginning to see the possibilities of cloud computing. You can quickly integrate services and create virtual networks that are managed by a designated cloud provider.
Collaboration matters if you work with other people, and software makes it easier to collaborate than ever before. Microsoft’s collaboration software, Teams, took some huge leaps forward this year. Teams brings together document sharing, chat, video, and endless integration options. Salesforces’ $27.7 billion acquisition of workplace collaboration tool, Slack, indicates the rising importance of collaboration software.
Using collaboration software like Teams or Slack creates a hub for your team to work from. You can also create groups with people outside your organization. One of the immediate benefits of collaboration software is cleaning your inbox of internal discussion; however, it offers much more than that. The ability to integrate other applications offers the opportunity to track projects, share documents, and display dashboards all in the same place. You can integrate different applications to create workflows and send notifications all in a central location.
Getting started with any collaboration software can be daunting. It will take time to get it set up so you’re comfortable with it, and be something that can grow and evolve with your organization as needed.
What Technology Trends In 2020 Stood Out To You?
As you know, 2020 was packed and there’s a lot we could have hit on. These are four technology trends in 2020 that stood out to us. What tech trends did you notice this year?