As a result of the pandemic, 49.2% of employed adults are currently working from home. We don’t expect to be going back to a normal day at the office anytime soon. Even in a post-pandemic world, the first signs are that most jobs are likely to remain postponed in some way. Remote working will persist and IT management will have to adapt to the provision of new talent and fewer office workers.
For many companies, remote working on this scale was never considered or planned. IT teams were challenged from all angles with a multitude of IT support requests. At the same time, you have to deal with the pressure to set up new systems and ensure consistent, fast connectivity for remote teams.
In addition, cybersecurity has become an important issue. The number of security endpoints has increased exponentially over the course of the lockdown ̵
Despite the unexpected challenges posed by the pandemic, the problems in themselves are not new. IT teams have long been aware of the pressures to innovate, but the mandate to make changes has accelerated. Change is therefore needed, but this next-generation work environment presents a number of hurdles that traditional network and security infrastructure must overcome. IT teams now have the opportunity to revolutionize their networks, not only to make them fit for purpose during the pandemic, but also in the world after.
Find a solution in a crowded market
To cope with the scale of the problems they face in the remote work environment, IT teams must move from legacy systems to intelligent, cloud-based technologies. These solutions can help improve visibility and automate repetitive tasks. Relief of IT teams for strategic business problems instead of handling ticket requests and bug fixes.
Many vendors offer solutions that claim to improve network visibility. However, not all solutions are created equal. In this area, some have created cloud services that enable uniform management and orchestration. In addition to providing end-to-end visibility into remote network issues, this can be fixed through a single pane of glass. This seamless insight into the health of the WAN, LAN and WLAN infrastructure is essential – and crucial for a post-pandemic world where remote working is becoming the norm.
With a single pane of glass, IT managers can provision, configure and monitor the health of their network from the edge to the cloud. Embedded telemetry and guided workflows allow you to manage connectivity, performance and security with minimal effort.
Understand the value of artificial intelligence
The solution should also be AI-based, predictive and automated. This frees IT teams from tasks so they can solve real business problems and accelerate innovation. These types of solutions are agile, resilient and flexible. In addition, AI-based profiling, policy enforcement and administrative functions help companies reduce their cyber risk.
While many organizations are already leveraging the power of AI and automation, some are doing so without a strategic vision for implementation – and choosing use cases where the value can be seen quickly. For more complex, large-scale applications, organizations need to partner with experienced network vendors who can tailor a comprehensive portfolio to their specific needs and improve overall business agility while unlocking new revenue streams and creating compelling experiences that delight customers and employees.
Prepare for the future
We will not be returning to one, but many types of workplaces – traditional offices, on the street, at home – and businesses need to demonstrate geographic resilience as security must be ensured. It has become imperative for employees to move seamlessly from place to place without further training or compromising.
This new workforce requires situational awareness, adaptability and scalability – on a global level – and all of this without any security gaps. Traditional offices and buildings are now turning to AI-powered contact and location tracking tools to enable social and physical distance surveillance solutions that make the workplace safer. These solutions use IoT and Bluetooth radios that are built into access points and easily managed from a single pane of glass. They can also run on a customer’s existing infrastructure, eliminating the need for ripping and replacing, and leverage cloud-based applications that are easy to activate and inexpensive to deploy.
The pandemic may have forced IT teams to adapt and change their systems faster than expected. However, these changes put companies in a stronger position going forward. Now is the time to review and develop the COVID-free future.