2014 is almost here and like each year before it, it will be full of new challenges and exciting new tech.  New strategies will need to be taken to stay on top of things.  We never know quite what to expect with each coming year, but we can be sure of one thing, it will cause us to change how we look at rules.

  • Have a Plan for Wearable Tech – Wearable technology is exploding in popularity.  Sony and Samsung already have smart watches, and it won’t be long until Google and Apple follow suit.  Watches aren’t the only worry, with Google Glass likely to become a consumer product next year.  It is important that your technology and human resources set strict guidelines about use of these items at work.
  • Mobility – Okay we are now in 2014 (soon).  We can check our email on our watches, watch YouTube on special glasses, connect from virtually anywhere, and use video chat from anywhere in the world.  It is really hard to make an argument of why some employees can’t work from home or some other location other than the office. Many jobs could be done from places other than the office, and it is time to consider that as part of your business plan.  Factor in the cost savings of electricity and heating/cooling for parts of the building for that day as an added bonus.
  • Online Courses Virtual Trainings – Sending staff to a 2 hour training for 500 dollars, especially when it is 3 hours away, isn’t the most efficient way to train your staff anymore.  Tons of online resources are available that offer free courses in everything from management to math.
  • Plan for Change in IT – 2014 will be a big year for technology.  We will be seeing lots of new devices, and new skills will be needed to manage and control these devices.  Setting aside budget for purchasing and training in IT will be dreadfully important.
  • Mine your Data – The data you collect about your staff and customers could be what helps you survive.  Make sure you have someone viewing you data and looking for purchasing trends and other important data.
  • Invest in your Employees – Although there are lots of people out there looking for jobs, there are also lots willing to leave for higher pay.  If you invest in your employees with training, company events, and other morale lifting activities.