I’m guessing most people don’t spend their days contemplating what the modern working environment might look like. I know that I didn’t before I started my new role here in the channel, but it’s the kind of question I now have to ask myself almost every day. There has always been a steady stream of technology introduced into the contemporary office, and I won’t labour the point here by mentioning the innovation we’ve had, since we can all see that things are different now. The main point is, I think few could have imagined that we’d be working the way we do now.
I’ve seen how my own productivity has been increased too, which is one of the key perks of working at a tech company, where I often get the chance to see and use the latest technology. Have a look at our snazzy new video conferencing unit for example (pictured below), which we mainly use for video meetings. As a lover of gadgets, I guess I am a likely candidate to be impressed by these sorts of things, but there are things which I think almost anyone can enjoy.
Take Cisco Jabber for instance, which has been setup to work on our network by our engineers, of who I really do admire for their wizardry. I’m able to send an instant message over to anyone at the company, see when they’re available and call them all from one place on my computer. Being able to send a quick question, even to that person who is really hard to get a hold of (and we all know a person like that) and get a response because it’s an instant message, rather than an email which gets lost, is simplicity at its finest. The real benefit is that it’s easy to use and so well integrated that everyone in the company actually uses it.
And these are things which are readily available to install and use now. The winds of change have been brooding recently. If we were to do a word cloud of last month’s trending news stories (which we did – see below) we would see a clear trend emerging towards change and things that are new. Looking at some news stories more closely, you might remember us tweeting about it, but Cisco even tried removing all the phones and monitors from an unsuspecting office in the US. Now you’re partly wondering, how is it even possible to work without a phone and a computer monitor? But guess what, everyone in the office seemed to love it. Check out the video here.
Unfortunately, we’re not quite past the days where companies protect their brand via proprietary cables, software and accessories, and this is holding things back slightly. However, major vendors that specialise in networking and communications technology are starting to focus more on interoperability. If you’re wondering what interoperability means, it basically boils down to making things work together even when they’re made by different companies. Perhaps we should go into this in more detail, but maybe that’s best left for another time, since it’s a whole other subject. In any case, it is something to get excited about, because we are getting the best of ‘all’ worlds, and it also creates new opportunities for resellers.
Whether we have the same rate of change we’ve seen over recent times or things start to slow down slightly, there are plenty of ways we can already use technology to increase our productivity. I don’t know about you, but I really enjoy discovering new apps, gadgets or tools that just make things more simple. At the moment, it seems like I’m finding new things almost every day, and more than anything that speaks for the exciting time we live in. I can’t wait to see how we embrace new technology and a create our modern workforce.
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Andrea (Cooper) Gibson - Head of Business Development