The COVID-19 pandemic witnessed the adoption of digital platforms by businesses all across the world. With the global lockdown in place, organizations are forced to quickly enable remote working environments for their employees. Due to the lack of strategies to overcome the problem of increasing load on the network capacity, employees are facing difficulties in adapting to the remote working environment due to logistical and technical issues. Organizations need to create remote working tools and improve their remote access capabilities to maintain their businesses' continuity and create a culture that allows an individual to actively engage with emerging forms of technology.
Verizon's research, in conjunction with HBR Analytics Services, surveyed 1,080 major business leaders in May 2020 and reported 78 percent of participants expecting a rise in remote work and 57 percent recording a boost in business agility. With 86 percent of the companies envisioning digital and physical workspaces' co-existence, organizations are replacing full-time employees with contingent workers as a cost-saving measure and planning to move a portion of their previously on-site workforce to permanently remote positions.
Companies need to create an effective work environment that integrates digital workspace in the company's culture and addresses the telecommuting challenges to deliver a smooth remote computing experience to their employees.
Current challenges in digital work environments
- With personal and professional life existing in the same physical space, employees face a lack of flexibility in work routines with reported customer calls beyond work hours.
- The IT environment is fragmented because organizations are facing difficulties in making the transition to digital infrastructures smooth. The lack of capacity is resulting in inconsistent user experiences for both the employees and management.
- Depending on the ability of feedback loops to maintain control and regulation, processes are slow, increasing the time taken to accomplish a task.
- The current digital infrastructure extends complex management and control of processes.
- Potential security gaps in the network are a growing threat to remote workspaces. With a lack of enterprise-grade security, companies are facing difficulties enforcing strong and granular security postures.
- Companies are unable to generate a quantifiable amount of the usage of the resource. The lack of a resource management system is resulting in consistent resource utilization, which further affects planning and management processes.
- The lack of a risk assessment and management system makes working models vulnerable to potential business risks.
- Companies face difficulties in implementing an agile IT infrastructure capable of supporting varying workloads and accommodating rising client demands.
The increasing need for digital workspaces
Digital workspaces provide a technology-integrated and software-defined workspace that contains all the tools of an effective remote work model needed to make virtual interactions more engaging and facilitate a simplified remote computing experience. They store user data in one place and are also packed with all the applications that the user needs ranging from corporate applications to specific line-of-business applications, including present-day SaaS applications. Furnished with solutions compatible with all the latest devices such as laptops, tablets, smartphones, rugged devices, and more, a virtual workspace allows users to engage with a wide array of remote work tools and applications anytime from any location in the world.
The integration of next-gen technologies such as AIOps, cognition, automation, predictive analytics, and software-defined networking into digital workspaces has further helped organizations enhance the user experience. Fueled by virtualization and enterprise mobility solutions, digital workspaces are fluid and deliver connected experiences that modern-day users need, to be productive in a remote work environment.
No longer constrained by traditional workplaces' boundaries, employees on virtual workspaces enjoy the utmost flexibility and a seamless remote work experience. With easy, centralized, and secure management of endpoints, corporate data, and networks, organizations are also able to simplify their tasks, recording a win-win situation for all stakeholders.
LibreSpace: Enabling a fluid digital workspace
LibreSpace, HCL's fully-managed workspace virtualization solution, provides a cloud-hosted digital workspace equipped with remote computing tools and solutions needed to induce an environment capable of providing a seamless experience for both employees and management, packed with an uncompromised security system.
- Employee-centric features:
- Intuitive, personalized, and on-demand workspace
- Modernized applications with secure access
- A unique and connected experience
- Powered by modernized content and intelligent automation
- Built for efficient self-service
- Management-centric features:
- Intuitive dashboard for centralized management
- AIOps powered, resilient, and secure IT environment
- Zero-trust approach for modernized security
- Capability for micro-segmentation
- Seamless deployments and operations
LibreSpace provides a unified workspace with built-in intelligence that simplifies workloads and offers a seamless self-service to the users. Powered by big data analytics, the platform also manages efficient provisioning of endpoint devices, workspaces, applications, and services. Based on the context and past user experiences, big data aids in the business-aligned categorization of user personas in the smart environment to deliver an intuitive and micro-personalized user experience.
Figure 1: Key elements in LibreSpace for enhanced user engagement and productivity
Digital workspace is the way ahead for 'the modern employee'
The onset of the pandemic forced an increasing number of C-level executives to shift to digital workplaces to maintain the functioning of their businesses. Gartner's digital workspace survey in 2020 revealed that 65 percent of participants agreed that the involvement of companies in the digital workspace has increased since COVID-19. Digital workspaces bring everything that the user and the management needs for an organization's smooth functioning, all packed in one single platform. From providing solution software to chat platforms and desktop-as-a-service, digital workspaces come integrated with the latest forms of technology such as big data and AIOps and provide a secure environment to the users. The platform enhances user engagement and productivity and keeps the remote work experience smooth, secure, and optimized.
With the future of remote work on its hands, digital workspace is the way ahead for the technologically evolving, modern employee. With organizations quickly adopting and shifting to digital platforms, the digital and physical workspaces will coexist in the future for the management as well as the employees. In recent months, it has become even more crucial for companies to refurbish their digital infrastructures and create a remote workspace for the continuity of their businesses.