Trends to watch in 2017
At this time of year it’s customary for tech analysts and the media to review the year that was and make their predictions on what’s to come. I thought it might be useful to do the same through the lens of Ergo’s experience, grounded as we are in the day-to-day business of solving customer problems in uncertain economic times.
Staying close to customers should be top of your agenda
There’s been a lot of talk in 2016 about digital transformation and we fully expect the conversation to continue as we help our clients on the journey throughout 2017. As ever, we prefer not to get bogged down in the technology and like to focus customers on the business benefits. We frame the digital discussion as a way of getting closer to customers. With CRM and BI tools, and all the data they amass, you are better able not just to win customers but to keep them, by engaging in constant dialogue across multiple channels that involve every part of your business.
Hybrid IT services are now a given
Just about every business is now taking something from the cloud, public or private, infrastructure or applications. Many organisations are now consuming IT from a complex combination of clouds that they run in tandem with on-premise and traditional data centre services. This hybrid world is where Ergo excels. Over many years we have honed skills and expertise to provide managed services across both domains – the cloud and legacy on-premise – enabling us to orchestrate increasingly complex delivery models that are not going to get any simpler in 2017.
Microsoft’s resurgence will continue
As one of Ireland’s leading Microsoft partners, I’m delighted at how the company has transformed itself into a leading cloud company with an ecosystem of applications and services that will continue to flourish throughout 2017. I’m particularly interested to see what they do with LinkedIn, which they bought back in June. In 2011 there were some raised eyebrows when they acquired Skype, but the success of Skype for Business has more than answered the critics. I expect something similar with LinkedIn, where a database of 476 million users and a fast-growing content-publishing platform will have useful synergies with other parts of the Microsoft suite, particularly Dynamics CRM.
Security will stay at the top of the agenda
Recent breaches only highlight that security is a higher priority than ever. Everything we do, from managed print to cloud services, is wrapped in our rigorous security-as-a-service offering. We’ve developed a holistic approach that’s built into day-to-day ICT operations, an actionable lifecycle that extends from the baseline of patch management, perimeter security and server hardening to a top layer of analytics, correlation and reporting. We also recognise the importance of the people part of the process, so we’ll spend time setting up policies and procedures, and training employees to make sure they are properly implemented.
Ergo will continue to grow
This year we acquired Micromail, winner of the 2016 Microsoft Ireland Licensing Solutions Partner award, advancing our role as a one-stop Microsoft provider. Meanwhile, the resourcing and CRM practices we expanded with the acquisition of iSite in 2015 continue to grow, contributing to what looks likely to be record revenues in our 2016-17 financial year.
We also won Company of the Year and Project of the Year at the ICT Tech Excellence Awards, and welcomed 102 new employees into the fold – all of which makes 2016 a hard act to follow. But that’s the challenge we continually embrace at Ergo, to better ourselves and keep moving forward, bringing our customers along on the journey and empowering them with leading edge technology.
So here’s looking forward to 2017, all the challenges it will doubtless bring and the valuable lessons we’ll learn as we overcome them.