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The Future Of Enterprise IT: 30 Executives Share Their 2013 Predictions

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The Future Of Enterprise IT: 30 Executives Share Their 2013 Predictions image Crystal Ball 300x199In 2012, we saw four major trends evolve: 1) a shift towards the “cloud” 2) the need for processing/analyzing “big data” 3) an increased reliability on mobile technology 4) the consumerization of IT.  As we head into 2013, these four trends will play an even larger part in enterprise IT according to the 30 executives that shared their 2013 predictions with us.

1. Oliver Bussmann – Global CIO at SAP@sapcio

In the next 12-18 months, we will see the Consumerization of IT become the norm in the enterprise. If CIO’s and IT organizations weren’t able to contend with this reality in 2012, they will need to meet it head-on in 2013. Gartner talks about the Era of Nexus and I like this because it describes the coming together of big data, constant access and connection through mobile and social and new delivery capabilities through the Cloud. The new Era is here; in order for IT organizations to stay relevant, they will have to adapt by building organizational competencies that exude speed, flexibility, security and closer ties to the business.

I predict that machine to machine communication will become a reality in the enterprise in 2013, so it will be exciting for IT to play an active role in this innovation area. I’m also hearing about “wearable” electronics but let’s check back in on this one 12 months from now.

2. Mounil Patel, North American Director, Professional Services, Mimecast

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The past several years can arguably be considered the year of the cloud, during which IT began seriously planning and implementing strategies to control costs by leveraging cloud technologies, with a major trend being cloud based email. The cloud offers more than just a way to do something cheaper or easier and I expect 2013 to be the year that IT begins leveraging their cloud footprint to deliver new capabilities that are difficult to provide on premise. I also expect to see cloud solutions expand in order to provide better ways of collaborating and sharing data between employees, partners, and customers. The best cloud platforms will solve the old IT problems while providing the average worker a breadth of new features to work more efficiently on a daily basis.

3. Marc Price, CTO, Americas, Openet

Enterprises and small businesses will increasingly enable employees to Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) to the workplace into 2013. BYOD is shown to increase productivity, reduce a financial burden on the business, and with subsidies eroding on mobile handsets, the market is ripe for increased BYOD penetration. Appropriate policies and security measures will have to be put in place over the next year in order to enable employees to use these devices securely and smartly, in a workplace appropriate manner while on the clock. Client software coordinated with network software from service providers will assist in enabling employees to use the devices of their choice in alignment with company policies and goals.

4. Don Keane, Vice President of Marketing and Product Strategy, Angel

As mobile devices continue to be favored by customers, this is quickly growing into a major channel and form of communication between brands and its customers. Keeping this in mind, designing a seamless mobile customer experience should be the number one concern for businesses in 2013 to not only help businesses better communicate with their customers, but also enable their employees to work more efficiently.

Speech capabilities in mobile apps will increase productivity for both employees and customers while providing an intuitive on-to-go mobile experience that allows people to speak their commands instead of manually typing and navigating through applications. As more and more devices compete in the mobile marketplace, users will continue to expect new emerging devices to offer better and more productive technology into 2013.

Voice integration within mobile applications has become a huge differentiator for consumer applications over the past year, however there is still a huge market opportunity for businesses. I expect to see more businesses win customer loyalty and improve their customers’ experience through voice technology integrated in mobile devices and applications in 2013.

Also, with contextual applications on the rise, mobile applications will continue to get smarter by learning the users preferences through analytics, making the mobile customer experience faster and more enjoyable. Marketers especially need to lead this effort and encourage their businesses to develop mobile applications that put the user’s needs first, especially if the app includes transactional features.

5. Dwayne Melancon – Chief Technology Officer at Tripwire, Inc. – @ThatDwayne

Tight budgets in 2013 will force organizations (public and private sector) to become more innovative, as they are required to get their job done with limited resources. This will drive the move toward more automation, as well as the search for more “proactive” projects. For example, I believe we’ll see a surge in cloud adoption, SaaS offerings, and vendor consolidation. The one area of aggressive investment will be information security, where the focus will be on system and application hardening (reducing the attack surface), as well as tighter identity and access management in an effort to protect data more effectively with less effort. We will also see a stronger move to connect security to the business to enable better prioritization of security spending and resource allocation.

6. Timothy Garcia, founder and CEO of Apptricity Corporation – @apptricity

CEOs often invest in getting their hands on “Big Data,” only to realize they don’t know what to do with it. With all of the hype surrounding Big Data, I see a huge need for applications that actually make sense of it all and help C-levels view everything within their organizations.  Additionally, with our current economy, companies now more than ever need to focus on supply chain issues to solve problems in 2013. The margin for error is smaller than it’s ever been and software applications that solve such issues are going to become increasingly important to the success of any company.

7. George Mashini, CEO of Catavolt – @CatavoltInc

Cloud technology and mobile technology are converging to deliver a completely new opportunity for enterprises to efficiently deliver enterprise data to mobile workers.

BYOD, recognized to be an industry trend due to consumerization rather than innovation, will become mainstream as IT departments are forced to deal with the useful and aesthetically-appealing applications that consumers use every day to make their personal tasks more productive.

There will be consolidation in the field of enterprise mobility. A shift away from mobilizing expensive, complex all-encompassing ERP applications will lead to more cost-effective extension of enterprise data, applications and content. This downward shift in the cost of enterprise mobility and increased efficiency will lead to increased adoption among companies actively looking for a mobile strategy. Onlookers, comprising mostly of the mid-market and up, will most likely remain onlookers and wait for a leader or two to emerge in the space.

8. Jens Karstoft, Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer at Zmags – @Zmags

The holiday season has proven that the mobile shopping is here to stay, in particular the tablet. For marketers, this solidifies the channel as an effective way to communicate with consumers and more importantly, a powerful tool for data collection. In 2013, marketers will be tasked with combining this data with that of more traditional channels such as point-of-sale and ecommerce to effectively reach the growing number of mobile shoppers. Those marketers that can streamline this data to better target mobile shoppers with personalized catalogs, magazines and overall experiences as a result of the data will come out on top moving into 2013 and onward.

9. Brian Reagan, VP of Product Marketing at Actifio – @Actifio

The cost of managing copies of data will exceed the cost of managing production, forcing companies to rethink their strategy for Copy Data management. The need for multiple copies of data for various purposes (backup, business continuity, disaster recovery, test & development, analytics, etc) remains mission critical, yet as data volumes continue to accelerate, the ability to meet service levels at a reasonable cost is challenged. New disruptive innovations will become mainstream to address these challenges.

10. Rob May, CEO of Backupify – @RobMay

2013 will be the year of the cloud security middleware explosion. We will see middleware that sits over various levels of the cloud stack to provide enhanced security, and it will be adopted by both sides – the customer (CIO) side, and the ISV side. By the end of next year most cloud companies will be discussing the security offerings with which they are compatible.

Enterprises will start to move to public clouds, but will use a multi-cloud strategy including niche cloud offerings. 2013 will be the year when cloud moves beyond the innovator and early adopter companies to the early majority. While you will hear about how many large companies keep significant data and applications on premise, you will hear the first stories of Fortune 1000 companies going all cloud by embracing major public clouds like Amazon, Rackspace, and Azure for most of their needs, and specialized clouds for things that have heavy and unique compliance or security requirements.

The first whispers of the need for SaaS data to be discoverable and subject to legal holds will arise. E-discovery always lags the tech industry a bit because lawsuits are typically backward looking, so now that we have witnessed several years of rapid SaaS adoption, it will soon be time for some SaaS application to be an important part of a major lawsuit.

11. Andrew Graf, Lead Analyst at TeamDynamix

Many IT organizations are searching for identity. The rapid pace of changing business needs and technologies has created an environment where managing infrastructure, support and projects isn’t enough to avoid the commoditization of IT. 2013 and beyond will see those IT organizations who will thrive focusing on how they help the business achieve it’s strategic objectives and how they help their clients resolve problems with IT solutions not on the IT solutions themselves. Leading IT organizations have to manage technology well. That is requisite. The best will truly understand the organizations goals and problems and offer creative solutions to successfully addressing both.

12. Nathan Spoonts, Vice President of Technology at HomeFinder.com – @HomeFinder1

The use of mobile devices as a primary Internet source will continue to increase. Users are becoming less interested in downloading an app to access a site/upgrading to use new functionality, so companies benefit by not having to support multiple versions of the app and having the functionality from the current web release available to mobile users.

There will continue to be an upsurge in migration to cloud computing. With the increase in the range and reliability of cloud services, this can be a sound option for smaller companies that don’t have the resources to build out and maintain their own infrastructure. It can also be a more affordable way to store data, particularly of the volume required by big data analysis.

13. Dave Laurello, President and Chief Executive Officer, Chairman of the Board at Stratus Technologies – @stratus4uptime

This will be the year of ‘community cloud computing,’ which I like to call the affinity cloud. Large groups with shared business challenges will create or subscribe to a cloud service that meets their unique computing, security and business needs. For example, think of a few dozen community hospitals that want an electronic health records system with assured HIPPA compliance. Large organizations also can create clouds for subsets of their client bases. A charity, for example, sets up a transaction management site for micro-lenders to third-world nations, with the necessary safeguards to protect Personally Identifiable Information (PII). As with public clouds, affinity clouds provide the cost savings and scalability of compute-on-demand with the added advantages of better control and security, prevention of unplanned downtime, and a true understanding of its user community.

14. Irad Carmi, CTO at TOA Technologies – @iradcarmi

I believe that in 2013, businesses will look to the applications they have to better use this real-time data in new ways – such as enabling better social connections and making in-the-moment decisions.  For example, think about the benefits to people like service employees, out in the field, trying to get to the right customer at the right time – if they could easily know which coworkers were nearby, and with what inventory, more appointments could be completed within the allotted wait time promised to customers.

15. Carlos Montero-Luque, Chief Technology Officer at Apperian

CIOs will reach a level of comfort with mobile BYOD in the enterprise that enables broad deployments to happen in the largest companies. Access will remain somewhat restricted to very sensitive apps and content while vendors work to ensure that the mobile environment is as secure as traditional behind the firewall environments.

Mobile collaboration for specific business tasks will be a driver for innovation in enterprise apps. The ability to share content securely and temporarily across work teams will change how people interact with their mobile devices and with each other by making the enterprise mobile experience less individual and more shared across teams.

Mobile device management will be replaced by a broader view of enterprise mobility management that incorporates a holistic view of apps, content, access to backend services, as well as networks and devices that comprehensively addresses all aspects of mobility within an enterprise. Hardware vendors will integrate more MDM capabilities within their devices, to enable their easier integration into broader mobility management suites.

16. Robert E. Stroud, CGEIT, CRISC, a member of ISACA’s Strategic Advisory Council and Vice President of Innovation and Strategy and Service Management/Cloud Computing and Governance evangelist at CA Technologies – @RobertEStroud

2013 will be a year significant challenges for the IT organization, as IT continues to become more complex with the acceleration of the consumerization of IT combined with the ability to embed IT into everything, along with the growth of technology outside of IT. This will be led by a number of trends including the continuing proliferation of devices, as employees supplement employer-allocated devices with their own and organizations move to allow employees’ use of these for business.

Big Data will be a key topic and continue the growth in data and, more importantly, the use of the information for business value through linking analytics and pattern recognition. Exploitation of the information will be the business requirement, while protecting the privacy of the individual will become the subject of concern for many individuals.

Additionally, the CIO will have to cope with the proliferation of IT outside of CIO’s and IT’s span of control. In line with the ISACA mantra, “Trust in and value from IT,” 2013 is going to be a year in which security, privacy and effective enterprise governance of IT will be critical for the CIO to ensure value is delivered from IT, with an acceptable level of risk and appropriate security and privacy concerns taken into account.

17. Sven Hammar, Co-Founder and CEO of Apica – @apicasystems

By 2014, mobile Internet usage is expected to exceed desktop Internet usage. That means that in 2013 developers and marketers will be hard at work fine-tuning their mobile apps and websites to capitalize on this audience. Performance testing will become more complex as mobile features will need to be considered in all test case scenarios. As a result, application testing tools will evolve to support any type of device with dynamic HTML versus device-specific code. Special protocols like WebSocket and SPDY will also become mainstream.

As mobile Internet usage steadily increases to exceed desktop usage, and as web applications become more complex, application monitoring and more specifically the ability to detect and locate the origin of performance problems will be a challenge for IT organizations. 2013 will be the year when performance monitoring will shift focus from just “Is it up or is it down?” to provide agile support for performance status and optimization of applications both in the cloud and on local enterprise networks.

18. Lou Guercia, CEO of Scribe Software – @LouGuercia

The hybrid environments will be the leading IT infrastructure in 2013.  Although customer-facing systems such as CRM are increasingly migrating to the cloud, ERP systems, housing sensitive record information, will remain mostly on-premise. Hence, nimble data integration between cloud and on-premise systems will be a key IT trend in 2013.

19. Deepak Kumar, CTO at Adaptiva

With the integration of non-traditional IT and the deterioration of enterprise tech spending in recent years, 2013 will demand a different approach from IT departments in companies around the globe, as they will have to adapt to evolving technology and outside influences now more than ever before. This will change the industry’s focus to distributed IT network solutions, creating cost-savings and less of a demand for desktop virtualization. Also, because of the outside, consumer-based influence on enterprises today, 2013 will bring the need for lightning quick deployment cycles in the IT world, and the demand from workers for simple integrated solutions and technologies that will make their lives easier. For example, one such technology is cloud computing, as we continue to see a turn towards cloud-based systems in 2013 companies will be able to reduce their overall technology costs without losing key functionality, allowing for a more efficient management of traditional and mobile workforces.

20. Joel Bomgar, CEO of Bomgar Corporation – @JoelBomgar

With cloud solutions that can be purchased with the swipe of a credit card, departments outside of IT will continue to select and purchase their own technology solutions with little or no involvement from IT. But when employees experience issues with these solutions, the first place they’ll turn is IT support. The support center will need to equip their staff with the tools and information that allow them to collaborate with each other and external vendors to access information about these various solutions and assist their end-users.

21. Tiemo Winterkamp, SVP Global Marketing at arcplan – @arcplan

Big Data will, again, be a buzzword in 2013. There is no doubt that modern technology and social media will continue to provide even more data, nonetheless there are still questions to be answered. CIOs will need to determine the value of all this big data and for whom will it be necessary to structure these multi-terabytes and petabytes of information.

The delays associated with IT will be brushed aside in favor of the speed, control, and rapid access that comes along with self-service business intelligence (BI). BI users will become more self-sufficient so they can optimize and accelerate their decision making processes.

The democratization of information will become increasingly important. Organizations will prioritize collaborative platforms as a way to eliminate information silos between users and departments that do not currently integrate unstructured information into the decision-making process.

Accessing data anytime and anywhere will become an even more prominent business need in 2013. Mobility will be a key factor in all things IT, from business intelligence (BI) to enterprise computing.

22. Jonathan McCormick, Chief Operating Officer at  Intermedia – @intermedia_net

In 2013, we will continue to see the evolution of IT and cloud computing, in line with several important advancements in technology. Driving the business evolution are new versions of key Microsoft offerings, including Windows 8, Exchange, SharePoint, Lync and Office 2013. This will be a significant driver of upgrade-based sales, as well as reconsideration of existing underlying technologies, such as on-premise versus cloud. Additionally, there will be a continued increase in the move to tablets and smartphones, which will drive the adoption of synchronization technologies like ActiveSync, File Synching and BES, along with cloud storage.

23. Raghu Bala, CTO of Source Interlink Media, Board Member of Fanggle

Big Data and Cloud computing will combine to explode the amount of data stored in the cloud 4-fold or more. Smart devices will begin to emerge with the easy reach of cloud via high bandwidth wireless protocols like 4G.  Private and Public cloud adoption will boom and tablet adoption will explode with more thick apps and thin apps using HTML5.

24. Michael Rapp, President at En Pointe Technologies

One of the most common pushbacks about transitioning to the cloud is whether or not the customer is properly educated about its benefits and features. In 2013, we can expect vendors to find better ways to help VARs offer a feature-rich cloud solution. Service providers will take a more active approach by teaching the channel how to position their services properly, and not only sell a particular hosted service, but sell the cloud.  Additionally, distribution is struggling to move beyond product shipments, so we’ll also see increased adoption of managed services and subscription-based pricing. Consequently, we’ll begin to see business models slowly changing as fewer companies buy hardware and move more to the cloud – it won’t be a huge change, but it will start becoming more prevalent. The data center and/or service provider will be the larger customer in the coming years.”

25. Saad Shahzad, SVP Sales and Chief Strategy Officer at dinCloud

There has been a major shift in the business world, from the use of simple public cloud storage to a more advanced hosted computing infrastructure reserved for business continuity and back up in the cloud. In 2013, we will continue to see companies increasingly renting as a service, not just storage in the cloud, but reserving the use of computing infrastructure to host their applications and data until their primary site can be brought back up in the case of a disaster or an event that could create downtime at the primary site. Due to the high cost of downtime, most companies will continue to, or look to, work with back up in the cloud providers in the future and not have in-house or second site backup that they manage themselves.

26. Andre Pascal, CEO at Nia Technologies – @trblesh00tr

I predict that IT will become a utility model as per use and cloud storage and processing power become ubiquitous.   In addition technical support as we know it will be increasingly relegated to 3rd and fourth level and eventually eliminated completely as bots (algorithms) replace help desk staff.  Finally cloud computing will be adopted by a growing class of independent consultants who will leave their desktops and laptops and opt by and large for the security and dependability of virtual machines housed on cloud servers.

27. Robert Jenkins, CTO at CloudSigma – @CloudSigma

In 2013, vendors will leverage 100gig networking to offer premiere storage in the cloud through reduced latency, faster I/Os and greater performance. And, because 100gig networking uses standardized protocols, it can be implemented with the flip of a switch to offer instantaneous high performance to customers in which speed is pivotal, such as the financial sector.

Throughout 2013, software-defined networks (SDNs) will become widely adopted in the public cloud market, allowing vendors to create an optimized network between VMs. This, coupled with optimized routing, will allow for greater performance, efficiency and infrastructure control.

When the cloud first hit the mainstream, some shied away from it, more comfortable housing mission-critical data in their own data centers. But, now, as clouds become more flexible, we will increasingly see companies using the cloud as a major component of their disaster recovery strategy. By choosing a cloud vendor that places no restrictions on existing software, organizations can easily mimic their own data center in the cloud to seamlessly manage their disaster recovery process while leveraging the cloud’s innate HPC capabilities.

28. Ditlev Bredahl, CEO at OnApp

The market is polarizing: you have commodity utility computing that is now pervasive, and can be bought one-size-fits-all from providers like Amazon. But then, on the other end, you have service providers adding value with innovative services, platforms and applications.

This value-added cloud layer is the future of the industry, but how will it work? Providers engage in a global cloud marketplace, where they gain access to resources beyond the capabilities of their local infrastructure. This allows them to innovate, localize and focus on customers.

With computing provided on a utility basis, and service providers customizing it for end users rather than being mere workhorses, the cloud is no longer the cloud. It is a seamless, global computing environment that can be used for anyone, anything and anywhere.

29. Devanshi Garg, COO of Icreon- @IcreonTech

In 2013, the physical and digital worlds will fuse. From the RFID tags on a runner’s bib to the real time camera feed from traffic lights that informs driving routes, the physical world is becoming an information system.

There is no such thing as an IT project; there are only business projects that are enabled by IT. IT professionals are becoming more attentive than ever to business and the role end-users play in the ultimate success of the software. 2013 will involve businesses setting aside more time and budget, towards intangibles around IT; communication plans, continuous user training and implementation support..

As 2012 comes to a close, consumers are increasingly relying on their smartphones for just about everything. From researching purchasing decisions to mobile commerce, expect to see more brands start to innovate and cater to the needs of mobile audiences, both customers and staff, that allows for more seamless use and integration of smartphones into our daily lives.

30. John Marshall, CEO at AirWatch

The next wave in the Consumerization of IT is the Consumerization of Corporate Content. BYOD and consumer devices on corporate networks have become commonplace. Employees are familiar with the iOS and Android user interface since many already use them at home and are now bringing them to work. The key for businesses is providing a similarly seamless and secure experience for accessing corporate content.

What do you think?  Share your predictions in the comment section below.

Comments on this Article: 4

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  1. So most agree – the logical movement of IT infrastructure to affordable and likely more reliable platforms and facilities is a natural event now. Ok – so what does It do about managing the customer facing aspects – (service) support, continuous alignment if needs with innovative ideas and improvement, and ensuring outcomes and the general service experience is respected and managed….?

    Is this the new norm for IT we have heard so many whispers about these past 18 months… operate as an information service provider…

  2. Marina Kerbel says:

    Very interesting information.

    When I read it, a couple questions came to mind:
    1.It appears that 2013 predictions are similar to 2012 predictions (cloud, mobile, social, big data), but coming together and expanding? Are there any fundamental differences between 2012 and 2013 predictions?
    2.Gartner predicted that by 2015, 40% of Global 1000 organizations will use gamification as the primary mechanism to transform business operations. No one in this publication mentioned gamification. Is it a miss or Gartner’s prediction may be out of whack?

  3. There are several very clear trends from the 30 forecasts for 2013. The obvious ones are cloud (which just about everyone mentioned), mobile (new functionality and BYOD), security, and the increasing importance of social media and big data.

    But there are a few less obvious themes that I found quite significant. A number of the forecasts mentioned, or implied, the increasing importance of integration – both in terms of mobile device integration, social media and location data, and integration of all the data fragmented across cloud applications. Several of them also mentioned the continued trend of business-led initiatives done outside of IT. Although the term “shadow IT” was not mentioned explicitly, the trend is clear partly driven by the growing adoption of cloud, the need for speed, and self-service BI. These two themes (integration and business ownership/involvement) are, in my opinion, two key factors that are changing the IT landscape in 2013.

    Here are a few of the comments that caught my attention:

    Tiemo Winterkamp: The delays associated with IT will be brushed aside in favor of the speed, control, and rapid access that comes along with self-service business intelligence (BI). BI users will become more self-sufficient so they can optimize and accelerate their decision making processes.

    Lou Guercia: Although customer-facing systems such as CRM are increasingly migrating to the cloud, ERP systems, housing sensitive record information, will remain mostly on-premise. Hence, nimble data integration between cloud and on-premise systems will be a key IT trend in 2013.

    Deepak Kumar: Because of the outside, consumer-based influence on enterprises today, 2013 will bring the need for lightning quick deployment cycles in the IT world, and the demand from workers for simple integrated solutions and technologies that will make their lives easier.

    Devanshi Garg: There is no such thing as an IT project; there are only business projects that are enabled by IT. IT professionals are becoming more attentive than ever to business and the role end-users play in the ultimate success of the software. 2013 will involve businesses setting aside more time and budget, towards intangibles around IT; communication plans, continuous user training and implementation support.

    Oliver Bussmann: The new Era is here; in order for IT organizations to stay relevant, they will have to adapt by building organizational competencies that exude speed, flexibility, security and closer ties to the business.

    Robert E. Stroud: 2013 will be a year significant challenges for the IT organization, as IT continues to become more complex with the acceleration of the consumerization of IT combined with the ability to embed IT into everything, along with the growth of technology outside of IT…..Exploitation of the information will be the business requirement…… the CIO will have to cope with the proliferation of IT outside of CIO’s and IT’s span of control.

    Joel Bomgar: With cloud solutions that can be purchased with the swipe of a credit card, departments outside of IT will continue to select and purchase their own technology solutions with little or no involvement from IT.

  4. Asaf Ahmad says:

    Business process automation, ERP and faster access to business information and analytics coupled with cloud technologies will be the highlights of 2013.

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