Enterprise as we know it changed drastically in 2020. Organizations were not only expected to adapt to the restrictions placed by the pandemic, but also provide newer and better ways of collaboration and amplify user experiences. This new normal, termed ‘Everywhere Enterprise’ by Gartner, describes how enterprises will operate in the post-COVID era. In this ecosystem, infrastructure is location agnostic, it could be on-prem, cloud or at the edge, that’s why work can happen from any place and employees in one location can help a customer from a completely different geography.
This trend of people working remotely from anywhere is for here to stay. The majority of the employees will get to decide their preferred working environment and organizations should have measured, in terms of bandwidth, schedules, and security, to enable those preferences. The persona of a typical employee from 2021 will be ‘on-the-go,
While this new persona is already the new normal, how does it affect the service provider, what should they expect in the next 12 months, in an Everywhere Enterprise.
One of the major needs of an everywhere enterprise is agility and speed – and to get the best out of the remote working situations, organizations will increasingly choose from services offered by different cloud-based service providers. These decisions will be based on costs, best-of-breed solutions, to avoid vendor lock-in, geographic availability, and other factors. Leveraging the strengths of the hypervisors will be a reality in many organizations, like speed and getting it right the first time will continue to be the priority.
organizations, like speed and getting it right the first time will continue to be the priority. The process is mainly about distributing workloads selectively between various computing infrastructures in a way that reduces barriers to innovation and provides a stronger disaster mitigation mechanism while increasing efficiency and reducing costs.
The bottom line is every transformation solution pitch from service providers will not just be about the cloud, but multi-cloud.
Everywhere infra and anywhere workforce calls for robust applications from the get-go. Application Architecture will be relooked to ensure its resilience and service availability. Resiliency becomes more important as organizations continue to rapidly implement software across multi-tier, multiple technology infrastructures.
CIO's main charter in 2021 will be to ensure IT is re-examined and if needed re-designed to ensure resilience and service continuity at the heart of it. This means service providers will have to place resilience architecture, DR as a service, and business continuity as one of their cornerstone offerings in their services portfolio.
When an enterprise can be everywhere, it is vulnerable from everywhere too.
The Future of Secure Remote Work Report states that 85 percent of organizations believe that cybersecurity is extremely important or more important than it was before COVID-19, and 62% of organizations feel secure access when supporting remote workers is their top cybersecurity challenge. This increased focus on security is going to persist, as more and more employees grow into the ‘work from anywhere’ paradigm and customers demand better, newer features that gel seamlessly with their lifestyle.
This leads to another key offering that the service providers will have to emphasize on ie “Security”. Especially with security becoming the agenda for the board meetings and board members as key stakeholders to understand the threat landscape to their organization and started reviewing security posture of their organization. The expectation of unlimited liability around cybersecurity causes will be seen as one of the asks in the RFPs.
User experience has always been the key element of our services model. Everywhere enterprise has only amplified its relevance. The traditional way of looking at customer ‘touch’ points will only hinder organizations in the new touch-averse world. Organizations are moving the needle from observation to immersive experience base engagement for their customers especially with technologies like Augmented Reality, Virtual and Mixed Reality. Investments in cloud-based collaboration tools will drive the new age of communications.
CIO's agenda to redefine the workplace in 2021 will lead to the recalibration of current support models. Solution and tools to proactively measure experience as a KPI will become table stakes in the support services.
The focus on user experience leads us to the next logical extension of the network system, with no room for latency issues. Applications have to be redesigned, allowing remote employees to access the information they need from the cloud, directly. Focus on solutions that can sanitize requests and traffic on the device, or even on the cloud will take precedence.
With the everywhere flexibility that COVID forced on organizations and employees, re-evaluating current long-term support contacts is coming.
The basic structure of our current support cost is built around SLAs, shifts, onsite and offshore resource spread. Now with the nonexistence of geo boundaries and the ODC concept diminishing, the operational model and costs should be recalibrated. Service providers will have to engage proactively to prevail.
2020 pushed IT services to a corner and like always, we found a way to prevail. Now as we get back to 2021, we will see operation transformation across all service providers. More will be expected from service providers around security and last but not least the pricing structure and the onsite-offshore model will change with the Work at Home new normal.