2022: Where we were right, wrong, things we learned, and predictions for 2023 and beyond.

As technology professionals, one of our primary responsibilities is to keep up with technology trends and the impact they will have on businesses. This can be extremely challenging because of how rapidly technology evolves, and we aren’t always right (bet you didn’t expect to hear that from a Geek!).

At the end of each year, we look at where we were right, where we were wrong, what we learned along the way, and, as always, throw out some predictions for 2023, many of which are sure to be wrong.

Where we were RIGHT…

Cybercriminals will continue to pick on small businesses

According to the 2022 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report, 82% of ransomware attacks were against companies with few than 1,000 employees. You may be thinking to yourself, “Why target small businesses? Wouldn’t it be more lucrative to target larger enterprises?” The reason cybercriminals target small businesses is not because they are lucrative prizes individually, but because automation and make it easy to attack them by the thousands. Plus, cybercriminals assume that weaker security measures will make small businesses easier to crack than larger enterprises.

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Russia’s invasion of Ukraine will create additional risks

Back in March, we told you that a combination of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Western economic sanctions and anticipated retaliation by Russian intelligence agency hackers, as well as other malicious actors sympathetic to the Russian government, would conspire to create unprecedented risk.

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Hybrid work is here to stay

As we made our way back to normalcy in 2022, many of us wondered what a post-pandemic workplace would look like. Would employers require employees to return to the office full-time or continue to allow their employees to work remotely? Or would most employers allow employees to work a hybrid schedule? We predicted the latter would come to fruition, and it appears that we were correct. According to McKinsey, 90% of employers plan to offer some hybrid model in the coming future. According to Gartner’s Predicts 2022: Digital Workplace Is Foundational for Employee Experience report, “by 2025, massive generational shifts will force 75 percent of organizations to adapt their hybrid work strategies to include demands for radical flexibility.”

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Cyber Insurance Rates will continue to skyrocket

Back in February, we warned our readers that the rising number of costly data breaches, ransomware, and other security attacks would inevitably lead to more expensive premiums for cyber security insurance. According to the Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers (CIAB), cyber insurance premiums increased by an average of 28% in Q1 of 2022 (compared with Q4 of 2021). Insurance companies have continued to toughen the underwriting standards that come with issuing new policies and have begun reviewing the defenses companies are putting up to thwart cyberattacks.

Where we were WRONG…

The Microsoft 365 New Commerce Experience (NCE) would be a nightmare for MSPs and their clients

Microsoft made some major changes to the way they license their Microsoft 365 subscriptions in 2022. In addition to price increases, they also forced customers to choose from three options on how they would like to pay for Microsoft 365 (month to month, annually, 3-year). Given that we manage over 5,000 Microsoft 365 licenses and would need to manage this transition (serve as the messenger of this news to our clients, this was not something we were looking forward to. Surprisingly, the process was smoother than expected and we made it through the year unscathed.

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Adding a pricing calculator to our website could scare prospects away

While we’ve always been transparent about our prices, we’ve never publicly displayed them on our website for the world to see for a couple reasons. First, our pricing is somewhat complex because every business has different needs. Second, we worried that if we listed our prices, it could potentially scare prospects away without us ever getting the chance to speak with them.

That all changed in April when our marketing team convinced us to add a pricing calculator to our website. Their logic was simple: Technology is a significant investment for most small businesses, and oftentimes they are willing to invest a significant amount of time researching products, services, and companies before picking up the phone. If we take the time to educate people about how we charge for our services, and why certain products are more expensive than others, it will develop a sense of trust with future customers.

As it turned out, the marketing team was correct. Today, our pricing calculator is one of the most visited pages on our website. We’ve realized that potential buyers appreciate the transparency and having a general idea about what they can expect to pay before they even speak to us.

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We never thought Topgolf would open in Louisville

After fighting (and winning) a barrage of lawsuits against nearby neighborhood organizations, Topgolf finally opened its first location in Louisville in November. Many Louisvillians never thought the day we come (including yours truly).

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