It feels like we just started 2021, but here we are, getting ready to enter 2022.
As 2022 draws closer, many leaders are starting to build their budget for the upcoming year. No matter the size of your business, having a spot in your budget for IT (Information Technology) is critical, especially as many businesses embrace the work-from-anywhere model and work in a continually evolving threat landscape. It can be overwhelming to sit down and start plugging numbers into your spreadsheet. That is where your vCIO comes in! They can help you identify what technology investments need to be a priority for the new year and how to implement these upcoming projects.
Start With the WHY
Like budgeting for anything, building out your IT and technology budget starts with looking at your business goals. Your vCIO will want to understand your WHY and what you want to achieve in the coming year. They will sit down with you to understand your strategic objectives, your overall business goals, and when you want to accomplish them.
Understand Your Current Environment
Understanding your current environment is one of the most important steps in developing your technology roadmap for 2022. Without understanding the current paint points, or security threats your business faces, it is difficult, and impossible to map your path forward. Your vCIO will work with you to understand your near-term needs as well as future considerations. Because they have knowledge about the tools and technology in the market, they will be able to recommend the right solutions based on their research and what is best for your business.
Identify the Pain Points and Security Threats You Have Today
By learning what your current pain points and security threats are, they will work with you to identify the necessary steps your business will need to take. These may take the form of additional technology investments, changes to business processes or application changes to help achieve your goals while also continuing to maintain secure operations.
In 2022, ransomware and cybersecurity threats will continue to be a major concern, but security cannot be the only consideration for how you run your business. Your vCIO will help you weigh your options about what you need from an operational standpoint and what you need to survive against any current or future security risk.
Build your Technology Roadmap
Once your vCIO has a holistic understanding of your company’s WHY, goals for 2022, the current environment, and the technology pain points you have today, they are equipped to work with you and build a comprehensive technology roadmap for the upcoming year.
What Should be Built into My 2022 Technology Roadmap?
If you have not addressed these fundamentals already, you should strongly consider investing in and including them in your 2022 budget:
- Data Backups and Data Loss Prevention– With so much information being sent through services, every business should have a data backup plan that includes multiple backups, regularly testing and recovery of those backups. If you have a security incident or disaster strikes, you need to know that the data can be recovered quickly to reduce the impact on your business. Backups and solid business continuity solutions are the difference between hours and days, or even weeks or months of downtime.
- Multi Factor Authentication – If your business has not implemented MFA or Zero Trust Policies it is time to do so. MFA is one of the top topics today and for good reason! MFA has been proven to stop cyberattacks, whether it is an automated attack with brute-force password guessing or a targeted attack on your business. In a Microsoft report, it was found where accounts used MFA, they are 99.9% less likely to be compromised. While it is not perfect, it is a statistic we like! MFA works by asking the user to provide an additional step of confirmation when they sign into their account. Unsurprisingly, more cyber liability insurance carriers are requiring this as a policy underwriting requirement.
- Cybersecurity Policies – The only way to protect your business from an attack is to have a good offense. Equip your employees for success by building comprehensive cybersecurity policies into your processes. You also will want to ensure your team has the most up to date security training to stay ahead of evolving trends. Make sure you and your employees know your policies and procedures and encourage your entire team, and third-party contacts not to break from procedure.
Planning and budgeting for the new year can be overwhelming but also exciting! By working with a vCIO that has the experience and expertise to understand what technology tools, policies and procedures will help you succeed and reach your goals, they alleviate a ton of the stress and you can feel confident in knowing your technology budget will be put to good use.
If you are looking to work with a vCIO that goes through the process of first understanding your WHY to help build your budget and technology roadmap for 2022 contact us. We can help you map your journey for the next year, and beyond.