What IT Professionals Can Expect in 2012

Submitted on Thu, 1/19/2012 - 4:36pm
What trends will impact the work of IT staff at nonprofits in 2012? Here are just a few.

1. Adopting and organizing online storage systems ('the cloud') for staff

Without a doubt, some of your staff are already using online storage platforms to share and increase access to files, whether on Google docs, box.com, dropbox.com or another site. I guarantee there is no system behind the file structure or naming conventions being created. In 2012 we have to embrace that our staff are already using these tools and standardize, standardize, standardize.

2. SMS messaging, mobile communications CRM

Email open rates for large newsletters have decreased annually for the past ten years. 2012 will be no different, so the question is: how low will you let it go before seriously adopting SMS to communicate with your stakeholders?

3. LinkedIn adoption among staff as a strategy

LinkedIn is here to stay and will continue to gain market share in 2012. Lots of people who are looking for jobs turn to this network – and so should your organization.

There are two big ways LinkedIn can be used to help your organization. One is using the platform to recruit talent for open positions. The second is using it to help staff find and connect with stakeholders in your organization’s network. Now you won't have to guess who your board members know at XYZ foundation!

4. Mobile theme for your website

I am torn on the ROI of investing in a mobile theme. Adaptive or flex themeing makes sense if your site receives over 10% of its visitors from mobile devices and those visitors are demonstrating low quality indicators such as time on site and pages per visit. Either way, IT folks will have to make the call in 2012.

5. The official death of IE6

Sweeeet! Take that spacer.gif. Microsoft is auto-updating this dinosaur so it should stop showing up on the analytics radar in 2012.

6. The official death of flash

I would love it if this prediction came true in 2012. But hey, at least it’s dead for mobile. Thanks Steve.

7. Facebook referral traffic will drop

Facebook will go public in 2012, making the network hyper-focused on revenue from ad sales. The Facebook timeline and edge rank favoring – the algorithm that determines what gets posted to news feeds – of Facebook-hosted content is probably just the start of the platform focusing on keeping people on the site.

8. Rise of people telling you to do more with Google+

Wait and see. But grab your organization an official account, just in case.

9.  Yet another screen size to worry about accessing your site due to the boom of the Kindle Fire

Keep an eye on the screen sizes and operating systems of the mobile traffic coming to your site. The sale of tablets is going to explode in 2012 as the price drops below $200 and you need to keep your site accessible.

Anything we missed? Let us know what you see coming in 2012 in comments, below.

As DoSomething.org's CTO, George manages all online and mobile communication systems for DoSomething.org. Under his leadership, the organization has become an innovator in social media, mobile technologies and cause. During his 4.5 years at DoSomething.org, he oversaw the complete overhaul of the site (cms, architecture, skin, etc) in 2008, landing a People's Choice Webby Award in the Youth in 2009 and nomination in 2010. He is a frequent speaker on nonprofit tech issues at forums, including the Google Grants Conference, NTEN, U.N. Youth Summit, NonProfit Coordinating Committee NY, National Conference on Volunteering and Service, National Red Cross Conference for Volunteers, and as a guest lecturer at NYU and NYIT. George is also a featured contributor for the Huffington Post Impact section (HuffingtonPost.com/george-weiner).