What IT trends are in store for 2022? While making predictions after two unpredictable years may seem impossible, one thing is certain: technology has played a significant role in the recent shifts in how we live and work. Small and medium-sized businesses’ use of IT has rapidly expanded and evolved, and we can expect that to continue over the coming year. Read on for the top 2022 IT trends to look out for!
Top 6 IT Trends To Look Out for in 2022
1. IT Strengthens Talent Retention
We’ve all heard of “The Great Resignation”. In one survey, carried out in August 2021, 55% of American workers said they were planning to look for a new job in the next 12 months. It’s an employee’s job market, and employers are scrambling to retain the talent they have, while attracting the best and brightest new workers to join their ranks.
In today’s remote and hybrid work environment, IT plays an integral role in overall company culture. Shifting to Slack and Zoom communications may have been sufficient in 2021, but in 2022, employers need to go further with how they leverage their IT. From improving collaboration, to eliminating needless technical challenges for workers, we can expect to see technology play an even greater role in employee satisfaction and, ultimately, talent retention.
Read our full report on this IT trend for 2022 to learn more!
2. Hybrid Work is Here to Stay
With a gradual return to the office in 2021, hybrid work replaced fully remote environments as the most common working arrangement in many organizations. According to Electric’s most recent survey, 59% of respondents were working between both the office and from home. In 2022 IT trends, hybrid work looks set to stay the preferred choice, as employees seek out work-life balance and employers entice workers with a partial return to physical locations.
Of course, this brings its own set of IT considerations. Employees must grapple with transporting devices back and forth to the office, and employers must contend with the associated increased security risks. Additionally, access to systems, apps, and tools may now be required from an even wider range of locations than in the previous year. As with all aspects of the IT experience, the technology used to support hybrid work must help, rather than hinder employees in their day-to-day tasks.
3. Asynchronous Communication Gains Pace
With a wider range of working locations now opening up to employees, organizations may find themselves operating across more time zones than in previous years. Young workers in particular relocated in their droves during the pandemic, with 31% of those aged 18-31 reporting a move.
Even for businesses based in a single city or state, many workers are now opting to work more flexible schedules outside of the traditional 9 -5. With this shift in behaviour, comes another IT trend for 2022: the increased need for asynchronous communication. As Co-Founder & CEO of Panther, Matt Redler put it at Electric’s Elevate event:
“Now that we’ve separated this idea of physical location from economic opportunity, we’ll start to see companies optimize their roles to hire the best person, no matter where they live. We need new processes that eat time zones for breakfast. That boils down to lots of asynchronous communication such as recorded videos and documentation, versus just calling meetings every time a decision needs to be made.”
4. Internet of Behavior
Gartner coined the phrase Internet of Behavior (IoB) to refer to the changes in behavior that can come from how data is used. These changes in behavior don’t come from data posted on social media. These changes come through feedback loops. For example, drivers who are constantly braking are probably speeding. Insurance companies use the data to improve driver performance by rewarding them for watching their speed, The same technology can be applied to truckers. Monitoring a driver’s behavior can highlight driving patterns that result in more wear and tear on a vehicle or add time to a long-haul route.
The IoB technology involves Big Data, matching learning, and predictive analytics. The tools are already being used to track online buying behavior so that targeted promotions or recommendations can appear on a consumer’s social media or shopping sites. The sophistication of the solutions will raise ethical and societal concerns, and experts will need to follow this IT trend so they can answer any questions that arise.
What will the data be used for? Health insurance companies track physical activity and grocery purchases to encourage a healthy lifestyle. If consumers make poor choices, would premiums be increased? It’s becoming harder and harder to separate fact from fiction or a fake video. Privacy laws will impact how data can be collected and used.
5. Artificial Intelligence
Artificial intelligence will raise the same ethical concerns as the IoB. It’s being deployed in hospitals, smartphones, and home appliances. Even now, questions are being raised regarding geo-tracking using cell phones or deploying face recognition software to identify potential bad actors. Although the possibilities seem limitless, more employees and consumers are concerned with the ethical behavior of their employers and the companies they do business with.
Before deploying AI, organizations must consider the data they have or plan to collect. They need to know how the information will be stored and used. Machine learning cannot operate in a vacuum. Companies still need AI to scale and work seamlessly with other solutions. It must be reliable. As the technology is more widely used, reliable and accurate results become critical.
Technology is not going to stand still. AI will expand into all aspects of a business. It could even power customer service, for example, adding a chatbot or conversational ai to help organizations increase customer engagement and reduce operating costs. As this IT trends grows, professionals will need to research and adapt. Before a company gets too far down the AI road, they should develop an AI strategy that defines how data will be used and how it will be protected.
6. Cybersecurity Remains a Priority
Cyber threats did not disappear in 2021. In fact, global cyber attacks increased by 29% in the first half of the year. When addressing this threat, businesses must take the following factors into account::
When everyone worked in the office, IT could send out instructions on how to use a new feature. If employees needed help, they would have IT come to their office. With a remote workforce, that’s not possible. Instead, IT personnel should spend one-on-one time with employees, showing them how to fix a problem. IT also needs to work with employees to secure their home networks or at least raise awareness of the vulnerabilities they may have.
In conjunction with remote access, organizations have to revisit their security model. Company networks no longer have clear boundaries. IT departments should be looking at cybersecurity mesh that provides more flexible cybersecurity control. A mesh defines a security perimeter around the person or thing trying to access the network. It centralizes the policy but distributes enforcement.
Small is Not Safe
It remains a concern that small businesses are not taking cybersecurity seriously. Too many small companies think they are too small to be a target. However, cyber attacks continue to increase across businesses of all sizes. The cost of a cyberattack to a small business averages about $120,000, so it’s worth investing in your security in 2022.
Get ready for 2022 IT Trends
Whether it’s boosting your cybersecurity or enhancing IT support for remote and hybrid employees, Electric is here to support your business throughout 2022. Get in touch to learn how we’re revolutionizing IT to make it simple, effortless, and lightning-fast.