Taking the initiative: 9 tech strategies for the coming year

As technology grows more and more complex, it can be difficult to see exactly how your business will overcome the new challenges.

Top technology concerns

Recent Robert Half research asked executives to express their top business concerns, as well as which initiatives they will invest in to address these issues.

Most expressed concerns about cost control and management (41 per cent of respondents), followed by advancing innovation and supporting business growth, with 29 and 28 per cent, respectively.

Other concerns include compliance, with 23 per cent of technology respondents expressing worry about policy and regulations in the coming year. Twenty-one per cent were concerned they wouldn't be taking full advantage of social media's opportunities, and another 21 per cent were worried about systems administration and maintenance.

So, how can businesses deal with these concerns? The answer is by choosing the right IT strategies to foster sustainable change.

1. Business intelligence and analytics

Almost one-third of respondents (29 per cent) indicated they were planning to invest in business intelligence and analytics in the coming year. Allowing organisations to use data about their businesses to inform decision-making, business intelligence and analytics is an investment that can help inform all other projects. Ten per cent also indicated they planned big data initiatives.

2. Cloud adoption

Cloud services have continued to grow in strength, scale and serviceability, and improvements appear to have quelled the fears of many hesitant businesses. Twenty-seven per cent of respondents said their businesses were planning cloud adoption within the next year. An additional 22 per cent also indicated they would be investing in virtualisation.

3. IT business-strategy enablement

For 27 per cent of businesses questioned, IT business strategy enablement was an important area for investment. To fully implement new technologies, it’s vital to ensure they align with current business strategies. This is an initiative that can help your business move forward in sync.

4. Improvement of business processes

Many great ideas fall at the first hurdle, thanks to out-of-date and unnecessary processes. Twenty-seven per cent of technology professionals said they would be looking to improve business processes within the next year. What's more, 21 per cent indicated a plan for a desktop/infrastructure refresh or upgrade, potentially improving internal processes.

5. Mobile solutions

Mobile is becoming increasingly necessary for all kinds of businesses. From mobile-friendly websites and app development to the growth of remote working, it's a hot topic for many businesses. According to the survey, 26 per cent will be looking at mobile solutions in the next year, and 24 per cent said they would invest in application-development initiatives.

6. Customer and partner collaboration

Allowing businesses to better connect with their customers, partner- and customer-collaboration tools can boost interactions, transparency and innovation. They can also allow businesses to react to changes or complaints in real time, and 25 per cent of businesses are planning on investing.

7. IT vendor management

Almost a quarter of businesses surveyed (24 per cent) said they had an IT-vendor-management initiative on the cards. Offering organisations the ability to mitigate risks and drive service excellence from their vendors, IT vendor management is an incredibly important initiative.

8. Information risk and security

Along with new technology comes the potential for new risks and security flaws, and 23 per cent of businesses are investing in information risk and security initiatives to keep data as safe as possible.

9. Social media internally and externally

Social media remains an area of investment for a number of businesses, with 13 per cent indicating they would be investing in internal social media or intranet solutions. Ten per cent said the coming year would see them looking at new social media initiatives, such as enabling, monitoring and more.

For further insight into the technology sector, take a closer look at the Robert Half Technology Salary Guide.

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