10 Enterprise IT Trends to Drive Buying Decisions in 2014

1 - 10 Enterprise IT Trends to Drive Buying Decisions in 2014
2 - Improvements to Big Data
3 - Sail Into the Clouds
4 - BYOD Will Only Continue to Grow
5 - Mobile and Web-Based Applications Will Rule
6 - 3D Printing to Take Shape
7 - A Keen Focus on Identity Management
8 - A Strong Desire for Software Developers
9 - The Security Hybrid
10 - Finally--The Marriage of IT and Business
11 - The Internet of Things
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10 Enterprise IT Trends to Drive Buying Decisions in 2014

by Don Reisinger

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Improvements to Big Data

There's no denying the importance of big data. More and more companies are finding they're being overloaded with unstructured data, leaving many to wonder if Hadoop and other services are as important as some studies say. Here's a hint: They are. And it's time to invest in better management of big data.

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Sail Into the Clouds

The cloud is guaranteed to be a major concern in 2014. A recent study from security firm SailPoint found that 84 percent of companies with at least 5,000 employees employ cloud services. Those companies that aren't invested in the cloud are planning to do just that. In fact, 63 percent of companies told SailPoint that they're now requiring IT decision-makers to consider cloud services when adding new software.

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BYOD Will Only Continue to Grow

The bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend will continue its rise in 2014. According to SailPoint, 82 percent of companies allow employees to bring their personal devices into the office. What's more, the vast majority of companies that aren't investing in BYOD plan to do so soon. Expect 2014 to be yet another major year for BYOD.

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Mobile and Web-Based Applications Will Rule

Earlier this year, Gartner released a study identifying some trends that it believes could play a crucial role in the enterprise in 2014. One of Gartner's chief findings was that companies will want to invest heavily in mobile and Web applications in 2014. With more employees going mobile and working from home, companies see little value in having software in place that requires employees to be stuck in an office.

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3D Printing to Take Shape

Here's an odd one: 3D printing could be a major trend in the enterprise in 2014. According to Gartner, 3D printer shipments will grow 75 percent in 2014 and double that tally in 2015. Gartner believes that companies around the globe will use 3D printers to test out their concepts, reduce costs through the design process and ultimately "streamline prototyping." Get ready.

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A Keen Focus on Identity Management

With the move to the cloud expected to drive much of the decision-making in the enterprise in 2014, companies need to be keenly aware of identity management. According to SailPoint, a surprisingly large number of people share their passwords with others when accessing cloud applications, making it impossible for IT to identify who is actually doing what with a system. Add that to the personal devices entering the office, and one thing becomes abundantly clear: The IT side is having trouble figuring out who is doing what.

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A Strong Desire for Software Developers

With the advent of mobile applications, job boards, like Dice, have shown an increase in desire for software developers. However, because cloud applications are expected to rise again in 2014, folks who can develop in HTML5 and JavaScript will be highly sought-after. Don't underestimate the desire for proprietary software—and the developers who go with it.

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The Security Hybrid

As noted, securing networks and handling identity management are becoming major issues. That is expected to prompt an important shift in the way companies handle security. In 2014, an increasing number of companies will invest in a hybrid-security model, combining skilled security experts who work for the company with third-party services that plug holes humans can't keep an eye on. In some respects, that's been happening for years. But 2014, given the sheer breadth of possible security issues, is shaping up to be a year where that implementation is far more sophisticated.

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Finally--The Marriage of IT and Business

Seemingly since the dawn of the computer age, IT management and business management were in separate silos. The IT department existed to deliver the computing technology companies needed to be successful. But business managers made all the strategic decisions. However, in 2014, the walls, which are already starting to crumble, will come crashing down. The business side realizes now more than ever that CIOs are integral to business planning and strategy, and things like leveraging big data and creating efficiencies through BYOD will be huge.

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The Internet of Things

We've been hearing a lot about the Internet of things, the concept that many devices that weren't previously connected to the Web will be plugged in so that networks can track their performance and health or just capture data about whatever task they perform. Just about every analyst expects that in 2014 the Internet of things will move deeply into the supply chain to track the production, delivery and performance of a wide range of mission-critical products, processes and more. What's the rationale? The more Web connectivity you implement, the more operational insights you gain. And the more insight a company has, the greater the chance of improving efficiencies.

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