While people retreat to their homes due to the COVID-19 pandemic, cloud workspace options are quickly becoming a necessity. Now is the time for small and mid-sized businesses to embrace the benefits of a cloud-based workspace. However, this investment doesn’t simply offer a short-term gain; a digital transformation can positively impact a business’ operations far beyond this current health crisis.
In this article, we’ll explore some of the key reasons why and how cloud workspace options boost productivity, collaboration, and efficiency.
Today’s Employees Need Flexibility and 24/7 Access to Their Workplace Tools
Most businesses’ employees are already working on their personal phones, tablets, and laptops. Unfortunately, many employers have been slow to implement comprehensive remote work options.
In a 2017 survey, VMware and Forbes Insights polled 2,000 CIOs and frontline employees to assess their perspectives and approaches to digital transformation and cloud workspace implementation. The survey found that only 18% of businesses had converted to a fully digital environment. 59% were “transitioning,” and 29% still used traditional office-centered systems.
Another recent study, this one performed by the Society of Human Resource Management, found that 60% of employers offered a remote work option, but it was only for ad hoc, intermittent absences. In addition, only 22% of employers provided a full-time remote work option.
In short, many businesses weren’t prepared for a month or more of working from home.
Overcoming “Bring Your Own Device” Nightmares With Cloud Workspaces
While most employees crave the flexibility and accessibility of remote work, it can become a logistical nightmare for IT professionals. With each employee having three or more potential endpoint devices, securing and controlling access to the business’ data can be challenging, to say the least.
On average, IT has to support 11 different types of devices, seven cloud services, and countless other software applications. Ensuring compliance and protecting that many endpoints is the workplace equivalent of herding cats. An IT team can do it, but it’s frustrating, time-consuming, and often futile.
A cloud workspace reduces the complexity, since most IT teams only have to manage one workspace. This gives them additional time to devote to more important projects and promotes efficiency.
Discover the Benefits of Cloud Workspaces
Some businesses are concerned that remote work will lead to distractions, decreased productivity, and less communication, they’re usually mistaken. Research suggests that most companies that implement a cloud workspace see substantial benefits.
Modern employees don’t think of “work” as a brick-and-mortar place; it’s a state of mind and an activity. They don’t always need to huddle around a conference table to whiteboard ideas. Instead, many of them prefer using applications to collaborate and share ideas online. Cloud workspace options make this information-sharing easier and more secure.
When businesses leverage cloud workspaces, their applications and software are available through the cloud, allowing their team to access them safely from any device and any location. They can share applications, data, and ideas in real-time — no matter the circumstances. Notably, VMware’s survey noted a 16% increase in collaboration and decision-making speed when companies adopted cloud workspaces.
Improved Efficiency and Productivity
With a cloud workspace, companies can configure single sign-on access to their software from any device. Rather than spending their time looking for access to necessary data and apps while navigating dozens of passwords and security protocols, teams can focus on their actual work.
Research suggests that when employees have the tools they need and the flexibility they desire, they are more motivated, experience higher job satisfaction, and are five times more likely to report increased productivity.
Many organizations operate under strict regulatory guidelines. Whether that’s HIPAA, PCI, ITAR, or the Rules of Professional Conduct, they typically have to do more than ensure compliance — they also have to prove it.
When it comes to compliance, a cloud workspace can help you withstand an auditor or insurance company’s scrutiny. Many hosted cloud workspaces essentially include “security as a service,” ensuring that data is protected and meets industry-specific criteria.
Virtual Systems: Practical Cloud Workspace Solutions
Due to COVID-19, our team is fielding a lot of questions about cloud workspaces and transitioning to remote work. If you’re not sure where to start or are looking for a reliable source of information, please contact our office. We’re more than happy to educate you about your cloud workspace options, and we can chat via email, phone, or video chat.
Society for Human Resource Management (2015). SHRM Research: Flexible Work Arrangements. Author: Alexandria, VA. Retrieved from https://www.shrm.org/hr-today/trends-and-forecasting/special-reports-and-expert-views/Documents/Flexible%20Work%20Arrangements.pdf
VMware (2018). The Impact of a Digitally Empowered Workforce: Forbes Study Data. Author: Palo Alto, CA. Retrieved from https://secure.vmware.com/44769_REG?touch=1&cid=&src