'Stay ahead of game in tech industry', boss urges small businesses.

Author:Smith, Gary David

Spotting the 'next big thing' in technology can be both a blessing and a nightmare, but according to Prism Solutions' Gary David Smith, as long as you find yourselves ahead of the game, these problems will instantly disappear.

What's the next filter down? When it appears we all say 'it was obvious and we saw it coming' (or should have seen it coming). However, actually spotting that 'next big thing' is a bit more problematic and quite often appears to be 'on us' instead of 'us on it'.

I always find the most interesting part of business is watching the uptake of new technology. It's usually led by the combination of commercial feasibility; ease of adoption, usability, client pull, and supply chain management--or simply to gain a competitive advantage.

Once that latest 'must have' technology becomes apparent, there's usually a mad scramble as everyone tries to get on board. Those just behind the leading edge of the wave often fare the best, since the trailblazers endured the growing pains and worked out the new technology's pitfalls.

We started our MSP business to support SME businesses in 2001. At that time, we had pre-high speed Internet access. This made remote access and support difficult, not to mention adoption of what would become the SaaS (Software as a Service) model we all now use daily in our business lives in some capacity. Fast forward nearly fifteen years and it's all very much business as usual.

So what do we see coming?

BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) has enabled people to work from any location at any time. However, do we really think all companies can operate and grow using a nomadic work force alone? Some people (workers and managers both) need bases, especially if they are in logistics, retail or simply have a brick-and-mortar presence. Working on tablets from trains and coffeehouses clearly isn't going to be the way to go for everybody. As mobility has encouraged mobile working it has also encourage multi locations with many people now wanting to be able to function from the home, office, branch location or temporary work space but with the same functionality and comfort as they would expect from a traditional working environment.

As the Cloud has...

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