Written by Joanne Sacco

Ten IT New Year’s Resolutions to Start 2020 Off Right

It’s a new decade. Next-gen tech. But same me. Is it time to make a few changes?
Artificial intelligence, 5G, and robotic process automation look set to transform the way we work, live, and play. They will also shake up business models, disrupting entire industries and ushering in a new wave of products, services, and even entirely new industries.
So with these huge changes either already occurring or just around the corner, how can we prepare ourselves to best adapt and stay at the forefront of new technologies so we don’t get left behind?
Resolution One: Learn about “Edge” computing
A new element of cloud computing, the idea behind edge computing is based around moving much of the processing currently being done in the cloud to a more local geographic area. So instead of your voice assistant handling your requests from Silicon Valley, it’s handling them from your own city, or even from within the device itself. It will lead to much lower latency and improved user experiences for a whole range of tasks.
Resolution Two: Use internal communication systems better
It’s time to embrace and learn more about the benefits of using Slack or your companies preferred communications platform. Having better knowledge about the importance of constant communication within the IT world, where the information you need is stored, and how you can rapidly access and manage it is becoming increasingly important.
Resolution Three: Critically review your current role
As IT continues to develop and evolve, it’s worthwhile taking a closer look at your future prospects within your general area of expertise and current role. Are you passionate about your role? Does it have a clear career progression pathway? Is there an emerging field or niche within IT that interests you more or may be in much higher demand in the near future? To help you answer these types of questions, try our quiz that has been developed to help you decide if your current job is really right for you.
Resolution Four: Make a conscious effort to emphasise security and privacy, no matter your role (at work and in your personal life)
As the age of information progresses further and cloud computing and other services expand, it’s important to realise just how important managing data privacy and security really is. More and more of our personal data is being stored digitally, and enterprise data is becoming a highly valuable asset to most types of companies. The expansion of 5G and other new tech will also open up this data to new attack vectors. So be sure to understand where your personal and business data is most vulnerable and learn to stay up to date on the latest cybersecurity threats and protection measures.
Resolution Five: Make more time for yourself and those you care about
Take care of your work life balance so that you can take care of your mental health. The fast pace of modern society means that our stress levels are more elevated and stay elevated longer. Working long hours or not taking any breaks exacerbates the problem to the point that people can become worn down or their health affected. Take the time to take proper vacations or take time to do the hobbies that you enjoy and relax you so that you can properly reset your priorities on what really matters. You’ll probably find that this ultimately increases your work priority too.
Resolution Six: Engage in new ways to learn and increase industry knowledge
Whether this be through podcasts or your favourite YouTube channel, there is a huge amount of free valuable and interesting content on almost any topic. Your commute time is a great opportunity to enhance your education and knowledge base, helping to fuel your passions and make you a wiser and more effective part of your organisation. Check out some of Finite’s recommendations for great podcasts so you can keep learning on your way to and from work each day.
Resolution Seven: Break down remaining siloes in your team
Despite years of trying to shed them, many CIOs report that one of the biggest challenges they face is continued siloing within their companies. It’s an issue that stymies agility and innovation and fails to take full advantage of the full skill set and knowledge of the organisation’s employees. In the report, 20/20 vision for the 2020 CIO, IBM talks about the CIO imperative to “drive relevancy by building collaboration within and beyond traditional dimensions.” One of the best ways to do this is to embrace Agile and DevOps methodologies that can help to break down barriers, foster collaboration, and speed innovation delivery.
Resolution Eight: Become a business partner
No matter your level, the traditional hierarchy is dead. This means that people who can ‘business partner’ are more sought after than ever before. Consider not just yourself and your team, but other teams in the business, think strategically and try to build the ability to bring your ideas out in the open.
Resolution Nine: Learn to cope with uncertainty

Management advisors, researchers, and analysts say they see executives entering 2020 with a high degree of uncertainty about what the next 12 months will hold. There are  growing concerns about a possible recession and further disruption across multiple  industries. This means there is an increased need to be flexible and responsive to changing business conditions as well as trends. One great way to do this is to make business planning a weekly event.
Resolution Ten: Give back
Nothing helps grow goodwill and personal pride more than giving back. Whether this is internally as a mentor or trainer within your organisation or to your community or a great cause, sharing your skills or efforts helps make the places you live and work that much better. Other options include joining a cause, serving on a committee, volunteering, or making regular contributions or donations to community groups and causes.

Looking ahead

The impact the current wave of new technologies will have on society will be enormous. Not only will the devices around us become smaller, faster, and more widespread, but tech like 5G and AI will change the way that we send and receive data, connect with others, conduct business, and move around our cities.
The proliferation of millions of connected IoT devices and autonomous vehicles and the infrastructure changes to accomodate them will transform our urban environments into truly smart cities. So make every effort to be aware of the direction the world is going and to prepare yourself as much as you can so that you can stay one step ahead. For more tips or advice about steps you can take to stay in touch with tech or further your knowledge base and skills, talk to Finite.

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