Today there are many slick commercials and advertisements with smart-looking individuals holding tablets and working away using the newest technology to grow their businesses. There are slogans suggesting that organizations who procure the latest applications and hardware are the ones that become more productive…more successful. While these technical ads may be true to a point, there are many organizations in the real world that still struggle to determine the most practical, budget-friendly yet effective IT infrastructure. Everyone wants to work smarter. Everyone wants to have a safe and secure network. But not everyone knows how.
We sat down with Matt Mayo, CEO of DiamondIT, and asked him how businesses and organizations can get the most out of their IT in 2017.
As a solution provider with offices in Bakersfield and Los Angeles, California, DiamondIT works with a number of businesses and organizations in a multitude of industries from healthcare to education and has great insight into the needs of the business end-user.
Below is part one of Matt’s interview discussing the latest trends in IT for 2017.
Q: Can you describe your role at DiamondIT? What do you enjoy most at your job?
Matt: I feel that in the course of Diamond IT’s history, I’ve had two go-arounds. In the beginning, it was more of an entrepreneurial role – a sales and relationship builder role to grow the company. I’ll be honest, I love being in front of customers and helping to solve their IT challenges – basically being a part of their team. As we became a more mature operation, I knew I needed to transition the sales responsibilities to other executives so I could focus on the big picture growth. Now as CEO, while I still get to be involved in every aspect of the business – I am more focused on looking at the big picture goals of the company and mapping its growth trajectory. This role is much different than being a young entrepreneur.
Q: What do you see as the top two to three major IT trends of 2017 that will benefit your clients?
Matt: I see security as one of the top issues today. It is no secret that hackers have become more sophisticated and are attacking all types of businesses now – not just at the enterprise-level. There are more news reports about companies having data breaches and security vulnerabilities every day. While I believe that the news reports have generated greater awareness of these security issues among the general public, I still strongly recommend that all employees be more frequently educated and trained in IT security in the workplace.
The fact is, standard tools such as anti-malware and anti-virus are not enough anymore – people need to be educated on best practices and new technologies such as next-generation firewalls. We, at DiamondIT, are incorporating regular security awareness trainings into our technology stack. We want our client’s employees to know and be aware of how to keep the environment safe when doing daily tasks such as answering emails and even transferring money.
I see the internet as a dark parking lot. Just like the real world, when you are in a dark and dangerous neighborhood, you take precautions and heighten your awareness. We need to take that same attitude in terms of how we approach internet security.
Q: The Cloud seems to have more adoption than ever. Do you see this as being another big IT trend as 2017?
The upshot is, everybody is going to the cloud…there is no stopping that. The internet is getting better and faster and more cost effective which helps to facilitate this wide movement.
The “cloud” buzz word has been around for a long time. Nearly a decade ago, when we took our first few clients to our desktop as a service cloud product – they were considered more technically aware – the early adopters if you will. Today people are further along in their knowledge of the cloud than ever before.
Today, most people are using cloud-based applications like Dropbox or Office 365 anyway. That is an important trend. I see the adoption of these type of storage and workflow apps as well as tools like ShareFile by Citrix, which is a secure file share and workflow management tool that allows you to see all of your documents no matter where they are, as a major play in the cloud arena and a true integration of cloud and applications.
Cloud applications like Sharefile have many benefits such as single sign-on and offer workers a single “pane of glass” to manage all the documents in one usable place or dashboard. Cloud-based workflow management tools with secure transferring and storage of files is the direction we are heading down. These apps make sure the days of sending emails with attachments in an un-secure manner are numbered.
Q: A business or organization comes to you and asks “What should we be doing to work smarter and to develop a better IT infrastructure?” What do you tell them?
Matt: Here is the thing – our differentiator if you will, is that we take a strategic look at what a business or organization needs to do to build an effective IT-infrastructure. We do not take a break/fix mentality that is short-term and doesn’t allow for that strategic look at an organization. Understanding the pain points, workflows and ultimate goals of the business are essential to answering the need.
No matter what we are selling – whether it is VOIP or any other technology – before we even start talking specific solutions, we do what we call a “deep dive” assessment of the IT infrastructure. We want to know how the company is using technology currently and how IT can align with their business goals. We want to know where we can increase productivity within the organization and what business units or processes are mission critical. This allows us to take a more strategic look at the business and have a better idea of their goals. Then we can develop the right solution.
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