At the start of 2021, many people thought office work would be back to normal within a few months. But it has taken many months for the economy to reopen and the return to normality is very different to pre-pandemic times. A large proportion of office-based staff have remained working from home. Video-conferencing, enterprise social media and collaboration tools have become the foundations for hybrid working.
During the year, Computer Weekly has looked at how businesses have adapted their end-user computing strategy. There is now a greater emphasis on endpoint security and surveillance that reaches into people’s homes. With the COP26 conference, the IT sector looked inward at sustainability and the circular economy.
At the same time, IT chiefs are assessing different ways to deliver end-user computing, the option to upgrade to Windows 11 and the end of support of Windows 10. Here are Computer Weekly’s top 10 end-user computing stories for 2021:
1. Digital surveillance of remote workers may increase enterprise risk From productivity tools to security threats, we explore how digital surveillance is forcing remote workers towards shadow IT.
2. How to manage endpoint security in a hybrid work environment The future of the workplace is clearly hybrid, but this has untold implications around endpoint security. How can businesses overcome these?
3. IT Priorities 2022: End-user computing IT departments have needed to rethink their end-user computing strategy in order to support a workforce in which the majority of staff work from home.
4. What is the real role of Windows 11? In the context of Windows 11, the question is not necessarily whether it is better or worse than Windows 10 or whether it is worth upgrading. It’s about how useful it is.
5. Room for improvement in UK right to repair laws The UK government introduced right to repair legislation earlier in 2021 to combat the growing issue of electronic waste, but data sanitisation firm Blancco says that while it’s a step in the right direction, there is definitely scope for improvement.
6. What will the 2025 end of life mean for enterprise Windows 10? Businesses have until 2025 to migrate to Windows 11, but older hardware may need updating and there’s a chip crisis.
7. Security Think Tank: A return to the office is not a return to normal With Covid-19 restrictions easing, offices are welcoming back remote workers this summer, bringing with them their notebooks and mobiles, and creating an endpoint management headache for CISOs. What do security teams need to account for to protect their returning office workers?
8. Gartner: Purchasing enterprise PCs during a global chip shortage How can organisations purchase enterprise PCs during a global chip shortage? They need to outsmart the crisis.
9. A PC in the cloud While many regarded Chromebooks as devices merely fit for less intensive computing tasks, they have shown Microsoft and the PC industry a different approach to desktop IT.
10. Ecolabels and data sanitisation key to recycling and reusing IT assets Ecolabels on hardware and data sanitisation of devices are key to recycling and reusing old IT equipment respectively, helping enterprises avoid unnecessary asset destruction and contributing to increasingly high levels of electronic waste globally.