Enabling the Hybrid Workplace

Addressing user productivity and security in the new hybrid workplace

The workplace continues to evolve from traditionally office-based to largely home-based and now to one that integrates both models – the hybrid workplace. There is certainly value derived from in-person interaction, but employees now expect flexibility in where and when they work. They need communication and collaboration tools to help them work closely with their workgroup regardless of location. They also expect a workplace IT experience like what they experience on their consumer smartphones. IT acknowledges the users’ desires but, at the same time, needs to ensure security and constrain costs in this new world.

Meeting these varying needs can be daunting. Employees working at various hours expect “always-on” support. Working outside and inside the office with a mixture of personal and company mobile/desktop devices raises valid security concerns and potential risk for both the employee and the company. And the mixture of in-person and remote employees makes collaboration more challenging. Underlying these new requirements is usually a legacy corporate network that was primarily designed for work from company facilities together with a small number of VPN-based remote workers. Properly supporting users in these new work models, while continuing to follow old paradigms, infrastructure, and networks can be very expensive or impossible. Because of new cloud-based infrastructure, as-a-service models, omni-channel solutions, AI, and human change management, however, it is possible to support the hybrid workplace while still improving security and reducing costs. Let us help you do it!

Executing the complex journey
Many elements are needed to enable a high-performance hybrid workplace, and some you may already have in place. Several of the key aspects that Celsior Technologies recommends are:

User Support – Support is the most expensive aspect of end user services and key to user productivity. Employees must be fully supported whether in person or remote. An omnichannel approach can let users get support using both approaches. Furthermore, chat-based support (as opposed to phone support) can reduce support costs by up to 33 percent. AI based hyper-automation can make users happier with greater productivity–and further reduce service desk agents by 30 to 60 percent. An inclusive approach to the hybrid workforce can actually cut costs!

Collaboration – With proper management of change, a cloud-based UCC platform, such as Microsoft 365/Teams or Ring Central, is much more than a simple unified communications and collaboration platform. Companies need a persistent team chat space that allows a group of local and remote users to easily collaborate through a group information store, shared documents, and real-time communications. This is critical for a hybrid environment.

Endpoint Management – This is the other half of Microsoft 365, taking care from the cloud of configuration, apps, security, and compliance of all of your users’ devices, including Windows 10/11, iOS, Android, and macOS. And in the Microsoft 365 environment, there is one UX and one admin experience regardless of the type of device.

Corporate Network – You need to secure all your communications whether inside or outside the company network. The foundation of your work-from-anywhere strategy is your network. At the onset of the pandemic, organizations scrambled to provide employees with the means to work remotely. The problem was that traditional networking was designed for HQ, branch offices, and occasional remote work. VPN’s weren’t designed for this new normal. Responsiveness of enterprise applications was significantly slower, and IT departments were overwhelmed by troubleshooting the sheer volume of legacy network issues. Celsior recommends moving beyond VPN’s and moving towards a Software Defined Perimeter based on a WAN application networking approach, as part of an overall Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) based solution.

Security – Complementing the network, it is critical, according to most industry analysts, to move to a Zero Trust Security environment where every user and device must validate their identity to establish access rights regardless of their location. Managing identity through the cloud is critical to securing network traffic using highly recommended approaches, such as SASE and Cloud Access Service Broker (CASB). At the same time, too many organizations don’t fully understand their responsibility in configuring Microsoft 365 to secure identities, mobile devices, PCs, and documents. While Microsoft covers the security of the infrastructure, significant actions need to be taken by the organizations that utilize Microsoft 365.

If you already had the people, processes, and technology, you would already have implemented a hybrid workplace. Ultimately, your hybrid workplace must work within your budget, your current vision, and skillsets. Celsior can help you find cost-effective solutions, a roadmap to a new future, and help where needed with the resources.

Case Study – Service Desk & Field Support

A global systems integrator needed to consolidate their SLA-based managed services across their 15 largest U.S. data centers. Support requirements included both end users and on premise systems (mainframe and midrange systems). Celsior Technologies was selected because we’re very responsive. When our clients have a need, we can act quickly and are very good at ramp up. Furthermore, our pricing is attractive.

We took responsibility for their 266-member service desk and 80-member field support teams. We met the client’s needs with strong delivery and green metrics month over month: SLA adherence across the Service Desk improved by 25 percent and Dispatch Mean-Time-to-Repair (MTTR) was reduced from 5 to only 2 business days. Furthermore, we delivered these excellent results in the middle of data center moves and consolidations.

Why Celsior Technologies
Celsior Technologies is a 25+ year-old company with broad expertise in cloud, end user, application development/maintenance, security, networking, and software licensing. Reasons customers select us include:

  • Agile & responsive – easy to do business with
  • Quality staffing within days, rather than months
  • Sophisticated AI support for Service Desk can reduce service desk agents by up to 60%
  • Additional cost savings and improved compliance through software licensing optimization
  • Microsoft Solutions Partner with specialization in Azure and Digital & App Innovation
  • Industry-leading Zero Trust Network Access integrated with Network-as-a-Service

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