Back about a decade ago, I often found myself relating to the Wizard of Oz when it came to resolving issues that plagued the operating system of the day, Windows XP and Server 2003. Even though technology had come a long way from the good old days of DOS and Windows 3.1, it was still pretty easy to troubleshoot problems on XP and Server 2003. The general public, however, generally had very little technical knowledge, so they saw me as a Techno-Genius. A wizard. In reality, though, when users applauded me for “getting it working again” I knew I was just the man behind the curtain, pulling a couple of levers and pushing a few buttons. Truth be told, business systems back then were pretty simple if you understood the foundation of how they worked; the rest was just finding the right levers and buttons.
Fast forward to today, where business systems are much more intuitive, complex, and vital to everyday living and, especially, to businesses. At the same time, users have evolved, too, and, in addition to possessing customized smart phones and tablets, they also possess a higher level of understanding of what technology is capable of doing. Because they understand more, they expect more.
It’s quite clear: the unparalleled speed with which technology has progressed in just ten years presents both challenges and opportunities for IT companies. Let’s explore this.
The greatest challenge for IT technicians today is operating in a world where a business’s functionality is inextricably linked to IT. Downtime used to be seen as an annoyance; today, however, it’s viewed as a disaster. Quite frequently in today’s small and medium businesses, if a server goes down, the entire operation grinds to a halt.