Unless you’re a regular tech geek, keeping track of the pace of change in technology can be overwhelming.
The good news is that there are really only a few ‘big’ things for you to worry about – and with careful planning against reasonable notice given, you should generally have few real concerns.
Take your current Microsoft Windows operating system for example. If you’re using Windows 8, or even better Windows 10, you will already be enjoying the benefits of a high-spec suite of office tools which should be delivering everything you need to help run your business well.
However, if you’re still using Windows 7, it’s time to take note.
From January 14 – less than five months away – Microsoft won’t be providing any technical support for Windows 7 which in practical terms means that if a fault occurs, there will be no patches, no repairs and few reassurances. More seriously, that suite of Microsoft Office tools you now use every day could more easily be the focus of a cyber security attack.
And while Windows 7 is already a decade old at this point, it still remains incredibly popular. Recent reports from Netmarketshare suggest that Windows 7 is still being used on up to third of all PCs despite two years of warnings from Microsoft about its imminent demise.
Even more worrying, there’s already a consensus that hackers may well be gearing up to exploit the end date prescribed to flood users with viruses and other nasties. These could potentially debilitate your day-to-day operations for days, if not weeks, and even expose your business to potential data breaches that could leave you exposed to an eye-watering fine under GDPR rules.
So while you seriously analyse the implications of all of this, you should at least for now make sure that all your important documents are safely backed up and consider embracing Windows 10 as early as you can.
The even greater news is that Windows 10 is widely regarded as a superior and more robust solution offering strong inbuilt security against ransomware and malware. It has also been built to embrace the multi-device environment, offering easy IT management and cloud integration.
You have little to fear from this transition. Yes, it’s change. But it’s definitely for the better – and moving from Windows 7 to Windows 10 isn’t a paradigm shift. What you will gain is greater flexibility, speed and, crucially, security. Integrated with the cloud, it also makes working outside the office easier than it’s ever been.
If you’re already using Windows 10, Microsoft are committed to providing service updates twice a year – and if you’re upgrading to Windows 10 from Windows 7 on the same machine, the transfer of your files is part of the process.
Right now, you might be thinking of plodding on for a bit longer with Windows 7 and hoping for the best. However, it really is time to get the ball rolling.
Like it or not, even if you don’t want to move to Windows 10 initially, eventually you’ll will be left with little choice. The time to act is now.