One of the challenges of running an IT company is that the only constant is change. When Innovative was founded in the late 80s, PC-based computing was still in its infancy, and early Innovative staffers had to learn how to support Microsoft Windows and not just DOS. The late 90s/early 2000s saw Netware and Windows 98 replaced by Windows Server and XP. Our challenge today is that as more and more applications move to the cloud, the technologies we are asked to support are evolving once again.
Over the past two years, we’ve seen a dramatic reduction in the amount of server hardware purchased by our clients. The need for all those application servers that were sprouting like mushrooms over the prior decade have dwindled as server virtualization became mainstream, allowing multiple virtual machines to reside on one physical server. In the last couple of years, many of those applications are now cloud-based. As a result the internet has become a single point of failure, so more and more clients are implementing dual WAN connections, complicating firewall configurations. Add to this trend the prevalence of hosted Voice over IP phone systems in use at our clients, and now you're pushing data and voice traffic over the same infrastructure, requiring more advanced networking equipment to be configured for quality of service.
As a result, the items our clients buy with their money has changed, but their IT budgets generally have not. What they are saving on not buying servers and storage are being moved to purchasing more advance networking infrastructure equipment, or reallocated toward operating expenses for those redundant internet connections. As technologies have changed, our primary role in the marketplace has not - we help to maintain a stable user experience. One can only speculate what changes the next 25 years have in store and what new technologies will be part of the equation…