The Christmas tree is taken down, the champagne is gone, and the ball dropped. It's 2011, and time to go back to work. If you’ve been getting back into the swing of things by scanning your Twitter feed or visiting your go-to tech sites for the past few days, we’re sure you’ve noticed a repeating story: top IT trends of 2011. It's almost impossible to resist the headlines - after all, who doesn't love a good top ten list?
Cloud computing. Desktop virtualization. Mobilization. Consumerization. Tablet-ization. (Ok, the last word is definitely made-up, but I was running with the theme.)
While these trends may apply to some organizations, chances are, your IT department’s transition to the cloud is slow (or non-existent) and nobody’s handing out iPads to every employee. So while it may seem like everybody else is virtualized and mobilized, it's not necessarily the case.
Most likely, you’re dealing with a “do more with less” approach to IT: a stagnant budget, decreasing staff numbers and an increased demand of services. And if this isn’t the case in your department, congratulations. The rest of us are pretty jealous.
Instead of feeling behind on all the latest and greatest IT trends, focus on your own department’s strengths, shortcomings, and areas for improvement during 2011. Develop a disaster recovery plan. Focus on storage. Get your hardware maintenance plans in order. Work with HR to finalize a social media policy. Transform your helpdesk operation into a well-oiled machine.
Aim high, but consider your resources and be realistic. Come up with specific goals for your IT department and create a plan to get there. The guy who makes a New Year’s resolution to lose 50 pounds this year will be the one scarfing down donuts in the break room come Valentine’s Day. Choosing to drink more water and take walks during lunch with the goal of having a good annual checkup? Much more effective.
Still can’t resist those lists? We’ve collected our favorites here. Some are predictable, some less so, and some are right on the money. Happy 2011!
Computerworld: 5 Significant trends for 2011
SearchITChannel.com: Five IT trends for VARs to watch in 2011
InformationWeek: Wolfe's Den: Top Technologies To Watch In 2011, Part 1
Network World: 2011 tech priorities: Are you ready to shake things up?
HorizonWatching: HorizonWatching: Top IT Technology Trends For 2011