IT Pro 20/20: Small businesses will lead the new normal

Welcome to the seventh issue of IT Pro 20/20, our digital magazine that brings all of the previous month's most important tech issues into clear view.

Each month, we will shine a spotlight on the content that we feel every IT professional should be aware of, only in a condensed version that can be read on the go, at a time that suits you.

This time we're turning our attention to a part of the tech industry that has shown remarkable resilience during a time of upheaval. The small business and startups sectors have long been associated with innovation, agility, fresh talent, and, let's face it, quirkiness. The smaller you are, the easier it is to shake things up, whether that's in the way employees work or the markets that are targeted.

Yet, the coronavirus pandemic has forced many larger businesses to go back to basics. Restructuring is now common, and so too is mass remote work. Some business processes no longer work as well as they did, while others have ground to a halt entirely. In many ways, the larger firms have had to behave like startups in order to survive, taking cues about the prioritisation of agility above all else and abandoning longer-tail projects in favour of those that provide immediate value.

It's this idea of smaller businesses driving the new normal that's the theme for most of our articles this month, although it’s most prominent in our lead feature, which takes a look at the trends that are likely to define how we work over the next few years. Elsewhere, we've got some industry tips on how to begin building your SMB tech stack, a somewhat frank discussion on the hidden dangers of bringing staff back from furlough, and a look at whether it’s wise to launch a new business right now.

The next IT Pro 20/20 will be available on Friday 28 August. Previous issues can be found here.

We hope you enjoy reading this month's issue. If you would like to receive each issue in your inbox as they release, you can subscribe to our mailing list here.

Dale Walker

Dale Walker is the Managing Editor of ITPro, and its sibling sites CloudPro and ChannelPro. Dale has a keen interest in IT regulations, data protection, and cyber security. He spent a number of years reporting for ITPro from numerous domestic and international events, including IBM, Red Hat, Google, and has been a regular reporter for Microsoft's various yearly showcases, including Ignite.