Technology is advancing at record pace, leading to countless opportunities with new communication tools, applications and networking solutions to improve the way we do our jobs. To support these new technologies within the enterprise, CIOs across all types of businesses must critically examine their network capabilities and develop a modern infrastructure capable of supporting constantly evolving enterprise demands.
Businesses that fail to meet these new demands will risk falling behind: latency and limited reliability from old infrastructure can slow everyday work and future innovation. Building a backend network infrastructure that is secure, flexible, agile and capable of supporting new technology and employee needs will be paramount to the success of the modern enterprise. Looking ahead, there are several megatrends CIOs must consider to best manage the many wireless, fixed and cloud-based communications tools necessary to their business in the future.
Workforce Megatrends—Supporting Your Employee Expectations
Digital natives are entering the workforce and bringing an entirely new set of technology standards with them. Having grown up in a digital world, these employees may be more loyal to the devices and tools they use to do their work than to their employers. They often expect businesses to support flexible and remote working, so they can do their jobs from wherever they are, at any time.
Vodafone’s Trends Barometer found that the introduction of digital natives in the workplace and the rise of flexible working are driving significant change for today’s businesses, forcing executives to rethink existing enterprise structures. Today’s employees expect businesses to offer flexibility with when and where they work, as well as how they use digital tools professionally and personally. CIOs must make sure these factors do not interrupt the delivery of consistent, agile and secure connection. To meet these needs, it’s crucial that existing infrastructure is updated to deliver consistent accessibility across mobile, fixed and cloud solutions, or businesses risk disengagement among employees.
Technology Megatrends—Supporting a Growing Need
Beyond the cultural factors driving new business structures, today’s evolving technology landscape has put increasing pressure on enterprises to become digital businesses. In fact, 81 percent of growth businesses say digitalization is highly important to them.
New digital solutions like the Internet of Things (IoT) and data analytics are enabling businesses to make smarter decisions and create more personalized customer experiences. With cloud computing, businesses can respond to critical issues faster using better insights. While most enterprises have experimented with digital initiatives, transformation efforts will need to scale up to meet growing market demands. To support these changes across the enterprise, companies will need to replace antiquated infrastructure with fiber-optic cables that can support gigabit speed.
Additionally, businesses should also consider Software- Defined Networking (SDN) when determining how new technology will impact their existing network. SDNs are flexible, cost effective and adaptable, making them suitable for meeting fluctuating network demands as businesses add more tools that will require additional bandwidth. Depending on bandwidth needs, SDNs allow businesses to allocate network resources automatically and in real time, making it easy to reduce latency as new tools are added, and reduce cost when less network capacity is needed.
Looking ahead, these key workforce and technology megatrends will reshape the enterprise and ultimately determine how businesses will operate in the years to come.