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Non-Profit Tech Trends for 2015


If there is one thing we can count on, it is that lists of Hollywood’s best and worst movies, our top news stories, and crazy weather summaries, will fill headlines and proliferate throughout our media as 2014 winds down. Personally I kind of enjoy these re-caps of our collective lives reading predictions for the future. Media predictions have of course now expanded into technology as well as popular culture. So what new technology can we expect in 2015? Flying cars? Rosie style robots that do housework? Pens with spell check?

How about instead: Cyber Insurance, 3-D Printers and the Internet of Things!! (The Internet of Things? - that sounds like the title of a Stephen King novel.) Take a look online and one of the main predictors of technology trends can be found at www.gartner.com

"Gartner, Inc. recently released its top 10 strategic technology trends for 2015. These trends are expected to have a significant impact on organizations over the next three years and may require major investment. As with any changes to business processes, these trends will affect IT departments and end users, as well as long-term planning, programs and initiatives. The coming year's trends will be focused on merging the real and virtual worlds, data intelligence gathering, and shifting to a digital business model."

"We have identified the top 10 technology trends that organizations cannot afford to ignore in their strategic planning processes," said David Cearley, vice president & Gartner Fellow. "This does not necessarily mean adoption and investment in all of the trends at the same rate, but companies should look to make deliberate decisions about them during the next two years."

Gartner are primarily a predictor of business trends, however tech trends are also highly relevant to the non-profit sector. Becoming aware of trends gives your agency a heads up. As we all depend more and more on technology to deliver our programming and services, we should look to tech trends to guide us in the planning of those services well into the future. Planning not just how to adapt to new technologies, but planning for the cost and infrastructure as well. How much will you budget for cyber insurance for example? Seriously.

A few of Gartner’s Top Tech Trends

See the full list here: http://www.forbes.com/sites/gartnergroup/2014/10/21/gartners-top-10-strategic-technology-trends-for-2015/

Mobile devices will dominate!

We all know this – but how many of us actually have a mobile app available? Non-profits will have to adapt services and yes, even develop apps to meet the growing demand of mobile devices in new environments. Mobile devices = mobile service. Are you accessible on mobile technology?

The Internet of Things - (Apparently not to soon be a Stephen King movie after all!)

As creepy as this name sounds, IoT actually means everything can and will have a chip soon, and that the chip and its data can be accessed over the Internet. Right now we see this in use with fancy home thermostats and some high-end appliances, (the fridge that texts you when you are out of milk). IoT will spread further into more and more products, especially in health care. Think mobile blood pressure screening, and even mobile medical appointments. How might that affect your consumer supports?

“In 2015, the internet of things (IoT) will take off, in which every object (appliance, pill bottles, manufacturing equipment) gets a chip and can be accessed by the internet, both IDC and Gartner predict. In five years all industries will be slapping sensors and chips onto everything,”

Security – It’s not just antivirus software anymore!

Gartner says “All roads to the digital future lead through security. However, in a digital business world, security cannot be a roadblock that stops all progress. Organizations will increasingly recognize that it is not possible to provide a 100 percent secured environment. Once organizations acknowledge that, they can begin to apply more-sophisticated risk assessment and mitigation tools.”

2014 saw many high profile hacks, so yes cyber insurance sales are set to skyrocket. Security in cloud storage, and bio fingerprint technology on devices will also now need to be considered by IT departments, alongside traditional antivirus software. We all know that we need to step up our security. No one wants to explain how they got hacked and why so-and-so’s records were taken by ISIS or Cuba. (Oh wait, Cuba’s ok now!)

Other Big Tech Predictions for 2015

Smart watches will take off.

Employee chat rooms will boom.

3-D Printers will go mainstream
The global 3D printing market will grow from $2.5 billion in 2013 to $16.2 billion by 2018, Canalys predicts

Pens with spell check will be invented!

Happy New Year!