Since 2020, millions of businesses have faced a range of challenges that have had the potential to disrupt their operations or make continued profitability more difficult. The first major challenge to almost all forms of business came with the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic. In a matter of weeks, businesses needed to quickly adapt to facilitate remote models of work for their staff (in response to movement restrictions and lockdowns placed on citizens by governments to slow the spread of the virus). Businesses that could not make these changes, such as parts of the retail and hospitality sector that relied on physical premises, suffered heavy financial losses and forced closure in some cases. After the most severe effects of the pandemic passed, the business environment has been faced with higher-than-normal levels of inflation and an emerging cost of living crisis that has served to reduce consumer spending power. Overcoming these challenges is an ongoing process and relies on businesses maximizing efficiency and minimizing waste to remain competitive. This article focuses on two other major challenges that are faced by modern businesses, with information on how these can be overcome.
- The threats posed by cybercrime
It is estimated that a new cyberattack takes place online every 39 seconds. If businesses succumb to successful acts of cybercrime, the effects can be devastating. Depending on the nature of the attack and the degree of complexity of the malware or action, it can result in financial losses over hundreds of thousands of dollars. In addition, there can be a resultant loss of business reputation and brand image if sensitive information or customer details are compromised because of the breach. Today, one of the key routes for sophisticated cyberattacks is to target cloud-based IT infrastructures. As more businesses have moved their operations to the cloud, weak points in the system, such as unsecured API gateways, can be used as a point of entry before attacks can be launched across online applications and software programs. One of the most vital ways to protect against such attacks is to ensure that your business benefits from a secure API management platform. This application allows IT security specialists to monitor traffic flows between APIs and individual applications along with providing insights into unusual or repeated access requests being made by potentially malicious online activities. Zero-trust security protocols can be deployed for cloud-based systems that help to identify any suspicious behavior. Put simply, API management platforms are one of the key ways to protect your company’s online IT services from cybercrime.
- The need to operate sustainably
In 2023, the world and consumers are beginning to understand that climate change is here now, and its effects are starting to be seen. Recent summers have seen some of the highest global temperatures since records began, and the summer of 2023 was the hottest ever recorded. In addition, severe weather events such as droughts and flooding have become more widespread across the world and their effects can be devastating on local populations. As the climate crisis intensifies, consumers are seeking to trade with organizations that can demonstrate their commitment to adopting sustainable business practices. Put simply, today’s consumers will avoid companies that have a significant negative effect on the wider environment or do not operate sustainably. Companies across all sectors must ensure that they recycle their waste and use high proportions of recycled materials in their products wherever possible. Sustainable business practices should be demonstrable and visible to consumers. There should be a commitment to minimizing corporate CO2 emissions from all processes and a clear indication that the company is moving towards a carbon-neutral goal.