Driving Collaboration in a Changing Workplace, CIO News, ET CIO

When the moment of the switch hit us all in March 2020, the workforce entered an era of working from home for the first time. And they relied on technology to do it. Screens have become the windows to reach teammates working remotely.

Going forward, many employees will continue to work from home, at least some of the time, but as the world opens up, many of them will also return to the office. Or do a hybrid version of the two. So we have a lot to work with in the changing workplace.

In a world where we’ll be working from home, the office, and everywhere in between, we’ll need digital solutions to keep pace, feel engaged, and empowered to bring our best ideas to work.

The future of the workplace will be fluid, dynamic and powered by digital technologies with experiences that allow you to be there from anywhere, anytime.

ETCIO hosted a roundtable in association with Logitech on Rehabilitation for Return to Work: Fostering Collaboration in a Changing Workplace.

During the discussion, panelists recognized the fact that today’s workplace is as dynamic as the digital collaboration tools that connect everyone within it. “Cloud computing, video conferencing, telecommuting and workflow collaboration applications have enabled all levels of employees to realize their most efficient way of working,” said Anand Lakshmanan, VC Sales Manager – India and SW for Logitech.

“Organizations should prepare for the culture of video first to simplify communication and minimize the time required to benefit from it. They need a platform that supports multiple devices that is easy to use and flexible in terms of supporting multiple communication mediums. They need to deploy large-scale collaboration platforms and enable access to employees working from anywhere. Multi-device support is equally important for a consistent look and feel across all platforms and devices,” he said.

Panelists conceded that a mix of remote and desktop work is developing as the likely scenario, and that an early digital hybrid will emerge as the dominant operating model. “In line with this organizational imperative, the rules for engagement, collaboration, communication, information exchange and knowledge transfer have been rewritten,” said Sreeji Gopinathan, Global CIO, Lupin.

But the level of remote work allowed for an employee depends on a range of factors such as the vertical industry in which their organization operates, management’s mindset towards remote work, level of seniority and the nature of the work. “BFSI and manufacturing organizations are less inclined towards a remote working mode and would only offer a hybrid working model on a situational and scenario-based approach,” said Milind Khamkar, Group CIO, Supermax.

During the session, panelists discussed top priorities when considering remote support solutions to improve your employee/customer experience in the hybrid work culture. “When we talk about using VC platforms for better collaboration inside and outside the enterprise perimeter. Security is one of the top priorities for organizations. Working from the office is essential for our organization,” said Shankar Jadhav, Managing Director – BSE Investments & Head – Strategy – BSE, BSE.

In a controlled environment like banking, working from home cannot be as efficient and employees must return to work. “There is a need for better proactive identity and access management to enable a hybrid working model,” said Manishi Chatterjee, GM IT, IDBI Bank.

In the IT/ITES sector, remote work is here to stay. “TCS has rolled out the 25:25 work model to enable a hybrid workplace. It’s important to us to provide an inclusive and democratized experience for all employees, regardless of where they work,” said Rakesh Chauhan, Global Head – Collaboration, Voice, AV VC, TCS.

Organizations are realizing that they need to strike the right balance for new hybrid working models. There is a need to create immersive, inclusive, intelligent, agile, stable, secure, resilient and optional platforms and all of this at scale

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