Top information technology challenges for 2024

A series of business professionals looking straight ahead

Top information technology challenges for 2024

Read Time 7 minutes

You will almost certainly spend the remainder of 2024 wrestling with the following five information technology issues. Several of these challenges will be familiar—when was the last time “cloud computing” and “cybersecurity” were not listed among the top IT challenges for a given year?—but all of them have taken on new dimensions in the past year. This is largely driven by the proliferation of AI and machine learning and its speedy adoption by everyone, from online marketers and teens taking shortcuts to government agencies and international cyber criminals.

AI and machine learning

Artificial intelligence has been on the radar for several years. What has changed in the past 18 months is the meteoric rise in AI accessibility.

In mid-2022, AI and ML were the domain of data scientists and a few forward-looking programmers. Today, access to “no-code” AI is transforming the lives of everyone who has to sit at a keyboard: execs looking for a productivity boost at work, help desk employees buried in angry callers, stressed-out students with a looming deadline, and online scammers looking for a quick buck.

AI and ML are proving to be powerful productivity enhancers, with an increasing number of people learning to use them effectively. In order to stay competitive—or even operational—organizations need IT teams that can build on these platforms both to solve customer problems and respond quickly when bad actors leverage these new technologies to wreak havoc.

Cybersecurity

The threat of cyberattacks is constantly evolving and becoming increasingly sophisticated. Hackers are harnessing more advanced techniques to bypass traditional security measures. This includes the use of AI and machine learning to automate attacks and create more convincing phishing and social engineering ploys.

According to several sources, ransomware attacks increased by at least 60 percent in 2022. Additionally, ransomware operators are increasingly using more cunning methods—like remote encryption—to take down entire networks. Cybercriminals (often headquartered in international locations, making prosecution and recovery all the more difficult) are targeting even small businesses. Supply-chain attacks are likewise becoming more common, taking advantage of the interconnectedness of businesses for even more massive disruptions and higher ransoms.

The cost of recovering from these attacks can be substantial. Organizations need to be prepared to defend themselves, plan for business continuity if disaster strikes—and make themselves less of a target to begin with.

Cloud computing and the “hybrid-cloud”

Along with cybersecurity, working within the cloud has been a top tech challenge seemingly for as long as we’ve had annual lists of business technology trends.

But the intersection of AI and cybersecurity has injected a new urgency in many IT departments. If yours isn’t one of them, it might be time to ask some hard questions. In 2024, more than ever before, it will be vital for organizations to be able to manage and secure their cloud-based data and applications.

That being the case, an increasing number of businesses are managing this risk by pulling back from the cloud in 2024. They’re taking a close look at their data storage and software/platform decisions, then shifting to “hybrid-cloud” solutions. With a hybrid-cloud approach, some elements stay in the cloud, while critical software applications and more sensitive data (like medical records and personally identifiable customer data) are securely stored in on-premises servers.

Big data and data analytics

Even small businesses have a treasure trove of customer data—provided they can unlock that value.

In 2024, businesses will need to be able to collect, store, organize, and analyze data to support informed decision-making. Again, this is an area where AI and machine learning will prove invaluable in the hands of curious and motivated employees. But those same IT teams will need to be ready to deploy more resources to protect these increasingly valuable data.

The technology skills gap

This is the central IT challenge, encompassing all others: There is a shortage of skilled IT professionals. Organizations need to find ways to attract and retain these professionals.

Taking on technological business problems in 2024 means we’ll need even more certified experts in cybersecurity, cloud computing, data analytics, and AI.

New technologies create both new opportunities and new challenges—from disrupted business models to novel security issues. Organizations will want to be sure their teams are ready to tackle whatever happens this year.

Is your workplace prepared to handle the top technology challenges in 2024?

Now is an excellent time to explore comprehensive training solutions with bulk discounts on training courses and certification exam prep materials. Boost your business with the financial upsides that come with more sophisticated tech staff and future-proofed teams. Upskill and retain the talented workers already in your ranks who are underutilized; invest in them, and you’ll put yourself on solid footing not just for 2024 but for years to come.

Contact us today to discuss training options to help protect your business from the challenges of today—and tomorrow.

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