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Return to business as unusual: the workplace of the (near) future

Posted by Verizon

What will the future workplace look like? It’s a constant concern for business leaders around the globe who are trying to ensure they are best placed to drive their business forward and stay one step ahead of the competition. Verizon is just one organization to give its view on the technology trends that we believe will most impact our global customers in the coming twelve months, and historically,  we are pretty good at predicting the future. But this year, in just a few short weeks, everything has changed.

No one could have predicted the seismic shift caused by COVID-19. Entire functions of many global organizations are now working remotely, and this looks set to permanently alter the way people think about the world of work. Remote working is no longer a benefit, luxury or convenience. It’s a necessity, and how organizations are looking to conduct business as usual – or rather, business as unusual – as this is not something the business world has ever even contemplated before.

President of Verizon Global Enterprise, Sampath Sowmyanarayan, has launched a white paper series in conjunction with Boston Consulting Group, discussing what he believes business leaders need to consider as and when we begin to return to this new normal. Boston Consulting Group’s view is that “comfort with remote work will reshape our future workplace,” where flexible work arrangements will increasingly be the norm.

This first article in a three-part series focuses on the technology building blocks that CIOs need to consider to effectively enable remote working. Sampath suggests six factors are required for remote working to be successful:

  1. A scalable network enabled by automation, such as software-defined networking (SDN) and virtualized network services (VNS), that can flex to support new usage patterns with work shifting outside of offices and enable application availability prioritization
  2. Cloud-ready applications for collaboration, core operations and support
  3. Strong and secure mobile connectivity to access those applications, as well as the corporate WAN (for those that are not cloud-enabled)
  4. End-to-end monitoring of network performance to maintain control, usability and security
  5. Zero-trust security implementation that strengthen the protection of sensitive information outside of physical offices
  6. A resilient end-user support model and supply chain that can deal with spikes in teleworker demand, both in terms of calls for help and the need for laptops, tablets or other mobile devices

The paper digs into all of these in depth, explaining what CIOs need to consider to make these factors work coherently together. COVID-19 upended the business world in an instant, but all organizations now have the ability to learn from this situation and think about how they can enable their business to rapidly scale, adapt and be future-ready.

―CT Bureau

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