[Column] Garsen Naidu: Keeping the hybrid workforce secure, connected and collaborative
03-11-2020 09:08:35 | by: Bob Koigi | hits: 4601 | Tags:

As we move towards a post-pandemic world of work, the traditional workplace model will shift to embrace an emergent hybrid workforce of office-based and remote workers.

With a high demand for it, the workforce of the future will be distributed, as 87% of employees have indicated that they want freedom of choice to work between the office and remotely. This is according to Cisco’s global research report, Workforce of the Future, which was conducted among employees to survey their expectations of employers in the future.

Digital technology has enabled workforces to continue conducting office functions remotely, keeping businesses afloat. It has also demonstrated that a geographically dispersed, remote workforce is highly capable of being productive.

The experience and insights employees now have, from having worked both at the office and remotely, have raised expectations that employers grant employees freedom of choice when it comes to workplace location preference.

And now, with the support of digital technology making work more convenient and efficient, new standards are being set in the world of work, which change the how, where, why and when of work as we knew it traditionally.

Future of the workforce

Employers need to leverage digital solutions to manage and co-work with scattered employees. A secure, connected, collaborative and productive work environment will be critical to forge a viable work setup for workers both in and out of the office, and to maintain a unified workforce.

According to Cisco’s Workforce of the Future survey, 76% of respondents believe that more training, on how technology can better support them as they venture into remote working, will be fundamental to business success.

With the rise of the hybrid workforce, collaboration technology will be a game changer. Cisco, as a trusted world leader in collaboration platforms, networking and security, recognises the growing need for innovative and evolved communication, collaboration and productivity tools.

For this reason, Cisco has rolled out more intelligent, secure and effective solutions, for smarter working among co-workers, both remote-based and in the office.

By using AI collaboration technology, along with environmental sensors and advanced analytics, businesses enable their dispersed teams to remain connected and productive, securely.

Furthermore, as offices start to reopen and people in-take increases while still in a pandemic climate, implementing technology to make the office a safer space from a health perspective is also something employees are calling for.

The environmental sensors in Webex devices, for instance, will help ensure compliance with room capacity limits, as well as checking whether meeting attendees are wearing face masks or not. The future of work is exciting, with the technology being developed meeting what the new workplace demands.

With the support of technology for a flexible future, employees will gain more control over their time and environment. They can continue to work comfortably at home or remotely, and they can also be safer working at the office, thanks to advanced technology.

Garsen Naidu is the Country Manager at Cisco, South Africa