Even as the end of lockdown approaches, it is clear that hybrid working is here to stay, with organisations utilising remote and office-based working on a flexible basis, in order to combine the advantages of both.
Here's why that's a good thing…
"In the new contact centre, we're no longer reliant on hunt groups, and can onboard new services and new desks very easily, which has allowed for a much higher level of agility in terms of how we connect and collaborate with our colleagues and partners. We've also got a much higher level of control, so we don't need to go through our IT teams to make changes or updates when we need to, and can constantly refine our call flows."
Stacey Whyte, NHS Digital
In July of 2019, Exponential-e hosted a roundtable at The Ritz London, bringing together 18 top UK architects to discuss topical issues across the sector and sharing views on the matters at hand. One of the topics raised was the newly launched Architects Declare manifesto and its 11-point plan for tackling climate change and biodiversity loss. From 16 founding signatories, word spread like wildfie and within weeks, hundreds of practices - large and small - signed up, signalling that our architects were ready commit to operating in a greener, more sustainable manner.
Failure Demand: "Demand caused by failure to do something or do something right for the customer"
Throughout the past year, organisations across all sectors have been forced to adapt to lockdown requirements, with omnichannel communications replacing many familiar methods of face-to-face contact. In light of this shift, the familiar service desk's role has broadened, acting as many customers' and end users' primary means of contact with their service providers.
There's no doubt that Software-Defined WAN (SD-WAN) is changing the way we think about connectivity, but at the same time, it's important that we as technology providers do not become overly fixated on the hype and retain our focus on delivering ideal customer outcomes. This means developing a keen understanding of SD-WAN's capabilities and how it fits into your customers' wider digital transformation strategies.
Over the course of the past year, the contact centre has been changed forever, with social distancing requirements meaning that familiar methods of face-to-face contact are now unavailable. In light of these shifts, social media, video and email contact are now regularly utilised as the primary channels for customer queries – a trend that we have seen on the rise for some years now. Between March and November 2020, we saw a significant update in the use of online channels, with 54% of organisations reporting an increase in email contact, 52% reporting an increase in social media, and 65% reporting an increase in the use of web chat.
The finance sector is required to have one of the most sophisticated cyber security postures in the world, with bureaus, banks, finance companies and insurers working closely with their technology partners to ensure sensitive financial data is managed, stored and transferred, with a stringent range of international security standards that must be adhered to at all times. However, cyber criminals have demonstrated repeatedly that they are constantly working to breach even the most sophisticated security ecosystems, devising new ways to exploit both technological vulnerabilities and human error.
Microsoft Teams has been in the ascension for some time now, rising exponentially in popularity throughout 2020, to the point it is now the default internal communications tool for many organisations, with the distributed workforce utilising it to effectively collaborate with colleagues on a day-to-day basis.
In recent weeks, companies across the UK have found themselves transitioning to a remote workforce with little to no choice, despite the approach prev...
Now more than ever, digital security is a team effort, with staff at all levels of an organisation having an active part to play in keeping critical b...
We see over and over again how COVID-19 is transforming the way we work and connect with each other. Employees across virtually every industry are now working effectively from home, even if such an arrangement would have been unthinkable at the start of this year. It's been extremely heartening to see the range of innovations that have been embraced in response to the crisis, but it's important not to forget the foundations of your IT infrastructure as you explore these solutions. For example, consider how you are backing up and storing the lifeblood of your organisation: your data.
The level of performance and resilience organisations demand from their networks has increased several-fold in the wake of COVID-19. The rapid transition to a fully distributed workforce has not only placed considerable demands on networks in terms of raw performance, but also the resilience needed to adapt to the unexpected with minimal disruption to data security, internal processes or the customer and user experience.
While we have certainly seen some considerable successes in this area, there is still work to be done if this new way of working is able to provide companies with the agility, security and scalability they need to adapt and thrive going forward.
Over the past few months, video calling has exploded in both our personal and professional lives. We not only rely on regular calls to stay connected with our loved ones during this time of lockdown, but have come to depend on it as a primary mode of communication at work, in order to maintain the same standards of collaboration and interaction that we experienced in the office. Indeed, the number of people using video calling on a regular basis has increased by 87% over the past two years, and shows no sign of slowing down.
Our lives are more interconnected than ever, with everything from televisions to fridges, kettles, cars and even doors and windows now able to be linked together over the internet. Having long since moved on from being just an intriguing concept, the Internet of Things (IoT) is very much here to stay, with devices like Bluetooth headphones and the Amazon Alexa now omnipresent in many people's lives. But while these 'smart' devices are often convenient and fun, they do present a number of concerns regarding security.
Throughout the past few months, we have seen organisations' internal teams forced to adapt their processes, infrastructure and strategies in ways that would previously have been inconceivable. Key to the success of this process has been the support of external service providers, who have complemented companies' internal expertise and freed IT teams to focus their attention where it is most needed. As it becomes clear that the distributed workforce is here to stay, such partnerships are going to be more important than ever moving forward.