Our team of experts here at Daisy have put together what will have the biggest impacts for IT decision makers in 2024. From technology consolidations and AI adoption, to how circularity will start to drive buying habits, to seeing sense in SASE, impacts from increased network complexity, to cloud disaster recovery and a new era of cyber response.
Lynne Magennis, Head of Frameworks & ESG
Scope 3 emissions will be under the microscope in 2024
Reducing Scope 3 emissions will be a big IT focus as organisations look to meet environmental targets. Although this will feel daunting for many, small changes in consumption can make a significant impact. We will see more organisations examining how to consume fewer greenhouse gas-rich assets, challenging refresh cycles, making best use of what is already in their IT estate and right sizing. Being able to gain a proper view of the impact of IT operations will enable organisations to make more environmentally friendly decisions.
Circularity will start to drive tech buying habits
Circularity will be the key trend next year, with organisations starting to select suppliers based on their contribution to the reduced consumption of newly manufactured tech, smart use of assets and sustainable designs. The less we consume, the less new products will be made and with that comes a reduction in forever chemicals, conflict minerals, poor labour conditions and nature negative operations. In 2024, we will start to see more organisations asking difficult questions of IT equipment manufacturers and choosing to work with partners who can help them use IT in a more circular manner.
Joel Cunningham, Head of Connect
Increased network complexity will introduce new vulnerabilities
Amid the race to adopt new digital technologies to support hybrid working effectively, networking and connectivity is under more strain than ever. In 2024, network complexity and the risk of security vulnerabilities will continue to grow. Organisations of all sizes will need to double down on security and risk assessments to ensure their network architecture remains secure and manageable in 2024 and beyond.
It’s time to see sense in SASE for combining networking and security in the cloud
Over the next 12 months, we will see more organisations adopt Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) models to achieve safe, efficient access to critical network assets. SASE will continue to grow in popularity as organisations look to combine network and security within a cloud-based model. This enables critical functions to be closer to where the applications and users are – rather than centralising it. Furthermore, this distributed approach will reduce unnecessary delays caused by the traditional hub-and-spoke model.
Andy Bevan, Head of Propositions and Strategy Consulting
Overcoming IT complexity central to delivering cloud benefits
The IT landscape is more complex than ever for many businesses, and IT leaders must navigate these challenges to deliver the potential of the cloud. Alongside accelerated digital transformation, one time technology investments made during the pandemic are firmly embedded within organisations adding to an already complicated IT structure.
Cloud migrations are often hampered by this complexity, leaving many organisations with a hybrid cloud environment by accident rather than design. IT leaders who are able to realise the benefits of cloud solutions for their organisation this year will do so by adopting a hybrid cloud platform to deliver a cloud-like experience across all infrastructures, whether legacy or transformed, on-premises, hosted or in the public cloud. The problems of navigating this increasingly complex IT environment will be resolved through the use of AI powered operations tooling; AIOps will provide early visibility of potential service issues and help IT leaders optimise spend for other business leaders in the enterprise and drive greater agility, efficiency, and sustainability goals throughout the organisation.
Andy Bevan, Head of Propositions and Strategy Consulting
Embracing AI to deliver business efficiency
While 2023 saw an explosive increase in interest in generative AI, and what it might bring to give organisations an edge, growth in business use has been relatively slow to date. With the release of Microsoft 365 Copilot at the end of the year, and further announcements widening the net to all customers beyond Enterprise Agreement holders in January, it is likely that 2024 will see an explosion in adoption. Businesses of all sizes will seek to use 365 Copilot to boost business productivity through a unified user experience and improved workflows, enhanced user knowledge and creativity, increased efficiency and, through improved data insights, improved business decision-making. A note of caution, though, is that realising that value may be a challenge as a result of poor quality or insecure data, poor governance or lack of workforce training. These issues will need to be addressed to maximise the return on investment.
A better managed asset lifecycle will be key to efficiency and sustainability
Dispersed workforces have become far more prevalent post-pandemic, and it is likely they will stay that way for the foreseeable future. The challenges of efficiently configuring, delivering, managing, maintaining and securing the end point device are clear to see. Plus, the pace of introduction of remote working and the proliferation of new devices 3 years ago will mean organisations are now considering a lifecycle replacement. In order to maximise sustainability – and tying into ESG concerns over Scope 3 emissions reporting and the circular economy – many organisations will want to minimise their footprint. As a result, in 2024, organisations will start to consider certified-refurbished devices to minimise Scope 3 impact and the adoption of formal asset lifecycle management services to reduce cost overheads, introduce standardisation and assure a secure and efficient remote workforce.
Paul McLatchie, Security Strategy Consultant
Cyber-specific response plans will increasingly become the norm
The threat of cyber-attacks shows no sign of slowing down, and the seismic impact of breaches will continue to derail many businesses. Operational resilience is thankfully gaining traction within many organisations and with that the spotlight is falling on the specific subject of cyber resilience. Organisations are generally adopting a more pragmatic approach in assessing the possibility of a realised cyber-attack, an attitude of “when, not if”.
More focus is being concentrated on the development of cyber incident response plans, mapping critical processes and aligned responsibilities that will be leveraged in the event of cyber-attack. Not only that but cyber-attack simulation exercises are rising to prominence, organisations taking full advantage of the lessons learned in validating their incident response capability.
There is also movement towards the “cyber aware C-level”, with businesses improving on their communication of cyber-risk to senior management. Use of targeted key risk indicators (KRIs) and concise, digestible messaging in translating organisational cyber security posture is paying dividends in co-opting C-level support.
There is never a good time to have a security breach, but detailed cyber incident response plans will separate businesses next year into two groups: those confident in their pre-planning, and those burying their head in the sand.
Martin Lewis, Operational Resilience Sales Manager
Environmental resilience will become paramount
As extreme weather becomes more common in the UK, organisations will prioritise resiliency measures to limit the impact from heatwaves, flooding, or disruptive power outages. The best prepared organisations will ensure their on-premise workspaces, and remote/hybrid workers can continue to operate via resilience by design, whatever the disruption, wherever the worker may be.
Cyber resiliency will come to the fore
In 2024 we will see businesses taking more proactive steps to introduce cyber resiliency strategies for their mission-critical functions. Last year, cybersecurity breaches and ransomware attacks persisted, highlighting that even seemingly flawless systems and processes can still be compromised. One area of growing focus will be third-party points of failure across the supply chain. We will see many organisations look to introduce cyber resilience strategies to prepare for ‘what if’ scenarios as a result. This will include robust cyber crisis management plans, as well as cyber-resilient back-ups that are tested regularly.
More organisations will re-evaluate cloud disaster recovery costs
While the cloud offers organisations ‘resiliency by design’ when it comes to disaster recovery, multi-region failover costs can rapidly ramp up with regular testing. In 2024, we will see more IT teams considering ‘recovery by design’ approaches when architecting their disaster recovery solutions, as organisations repatriate data from the cloud for cost and compliance reasons.
Matt Tancred, Sales Specialist Team Leader
Technology consolidation and AI will drive the next stage of Unified Communications adoption
Driven in part by the pandemic, organisations have built up a plethora of different technologies and systems to support hybrid working. However, organisations are increasingly finding such a piecemeal approach is creating integration and management challenges. In 2024, we will see more organisations embrace holistic Unified Communications platforms as they look to simplify their IT estates.
We will also see the use of AI evolve from simply managing routine tasks, to real-time conversation analysis and presenting insights back to users. As a result of integrating AI, the latest Unified Communications solutions will be able to actively facilitate planning, decision making and advice to users and customers. This will increase efficiency, boost customer experience and save costs.