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Tech Forecast 2017: 5 key technologies to double down on now

Beth Stackpole | Dec. 15, 2016
IT leaders plan to use these core tools to deliver business results in 2017

Desktop systems are still the most common targets of virtualization initiatives -- 16% of respondents to the Computerworld Forecast 2017 survey said they currently have desktop virtualization beta tests underway. Storage is the second most common technology to be virtualized, with 11% of respondents saying they're beta-testing such systems, followed by server virtualization (being beta-tested by 10% of those polled), mobile virtualization (8%) and network virtualization (7%).

Roche Bros. has already gone all-in with virtualization, using the technology for desktops, servers, networks and storage, says Lauderbach. "Everything we have is already virtual," he says.

Similarly, the Edmonton city government has been pursuing infrastructure virtualization projects for years, says Rankin. "Virtualization keeps going and growing, but it's not at a point anymore where it's strategic -- it's just what we do," he says.

The year of the customer

IT leaders are adopting and applying these five technologies with specific business outcomes in mind. One of the most important is customer satisfaction. Nearly half (48%) of the respondents to the Computerworld Forecast 2017 survey said improving customer satisfaction or the customer experience was the most important business priority for IT in the coming 12 months.

That makes sense to Global Strategy Group's Ho, whose goals for 2017 include improving the customer experience. "IT is here to serve the business; our business isn't IT," he says. "Customers and users are the ones that need to be happy and able to do their work well. The way that happens is that we make their experience as great as possible."


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