In this edition of Voices of the Industry, Chief Executive Officer Chris Downie leads a round-up of some of Flexential’s top tech predictions for the coming year.
If the obstacles we’ve faced over the last two years have taught us anything, it’s that we must be resilient and willing to accept change in order for our businesses to survive. Throughout this time, the IT industry has experienced significant challenges and has faced them head on with rapid shifts in the way we work. Now, a new year is upon us and the Flexential team is thinking ahead to anticipate the IT infrastructure opportunities and challenges that come with this new territory. Here’s our take on what’s to come in 2022 with predictions on hybrid IT, cybersecurity, connectivity, smart cities and much more.
Hybrid IT, Data Center Expansion & Investment
Chris Downie, CEO
Following a very active investment pipeline in 2021, we should expect continued growth and development for the data center market due to the continuous adoption (and dire need) of cutting-edge technologies like cloud computing, big data analytics and AI to keep up with the digital age. There are opportunities for businesses of any shape and size to benefit from increased data center development and colocation technology in the year ahead and beyond.
The Digital Divide, Smart Cities & the Future of 5G
Jason Carolan, Chief Innovation Officer
The smart city market is expected to grow 29% annually from 2021 to 2028. The future smart city will be driven by strategic collaboration between public and private organizations. Smart cities nationwide are striving for constant innovation, but that starts with common goals, data sharing and determining the best way to use said data. Alongside expected levels of collaboration, enhanced data science capabilities across cities will make data sharing easier for leaders. In addition, the same level of innovation will be used to help close the digital divide between rural and large metros, students, small businesses and NGOs.
Edge Computing & Network Connectivity
Ryan Mallory, COO – Colocation Services
COVID-19 brought the challenges of traditional IT infrastructure to the surface, forcing 87% of companies to re-evaluate their remote connectivity policy in the last year. In 2022, edge computing will serve as the foundation for business success. Specifically, the shift to a more distributed edge-oriented computing model has driven greater attention on secure access service edge (SASE). The popularity of SASE quickly skyrocketed amid COVID and continues to gain attention as 64% of businesses reported that they are currently adopting or are planning to adopt SASE in the next year. SASE isn’t just solving the near-term challenge of combining access and security solutions, it’s about building a platform for the future of the network edge. These innovations highlight why SASE is the cornerstone for continued success on the edge next year—and for years to come.
Programmable Networks, Rise of Hybrid Cloud & Multicloud Strategies
Mike Fuhrman, COO – Cloud and Managed Services
The hybrid workforce is here to stay as companies requiring in-office work will lose out on 70% of job candidates. We anticipate that this new normal of remote work will drive an increase in demand for computing capacity. With the right cloud environment, strategy and policies in place, cloud migration can lead to long-term value creation for businesses of any size. Amidst infrastructure changes, a tailored hybrid strategy is critical for a business’ success in the digital age, diving into the importance of picking the right partner in terms of the design, development and ongoing management of hybrid infrastructure.
Data Protection/Recovery & Cybersecurity
Patrick Doherty, Chief Revenue Officer
Many large corporations experienced significant internet outages in 2021, kicking their sites offline and halting their business operations. Gartner predicts that by 2025, at least 75% of IT organizations will face one or more ransomware attacks. During a time where constant connectivity is vital, the need and growth of Disaster Recovery-as-a-Service (DRaaS) will be a major theme in 2022. DRaaS solutions will be increasingly depended upon after a company is hit by a natural disaster, equipment failure, power outage or cyberattack.
Chris Downie is CEO of Flexential. Flexential empowers the IT journey of the nation’s most complex businesses by offering flexible and tailored hybrid IT solutions comprised of colocation, cloud, connectivity, data protection, managed, and professional services. See how Flexential goes beyond the four walls of the data center to empower IT through an interactive map.