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The Power of Now

“I believe that the future is something that must be achieved and not predicted.”

I love that quote—something I came across in a recent Forbes article, which is credited to Don Tapscott, author of Wikinomics.

There’s a lot of talk right now about cloud computing, proliferation of devices and Bring Your Own Device (BYOD). And when you look at the big picture, it’s clear that there are two things we need to acknowledge:

  1. Employees want the freedom to work anywhere, anytime, with any device; and
  2. IT needs to rethink the infrastructure to allow for the seamless and secure work experience that actually lets us work and collaborate across distances, and in ways that seem like we’re ‘right there.’

GigaOm recently reported on a talk by Gary Swart of oDesk that focused on remote work. Referring to ‘Work 3.0,’ Swart described it as “access to the best people no matter where they are in the world,” and the “ability to work with those people as if they’re in the room with you.”

When we’re able to render geography irrelevant when it comes to work and collaboration, the more productive and satisfying our workers’ experiences will be and the more efficient and successful our organizations will be.

But there are also the less obvious benefits that companies achieve by creating a network infrastructure that allows work from anywhere. As the Forbes article points out, by reducing commuting time, employees can use that time for working out or making healthy meals—which can have an impact on wellness and healthcare costs. Not only that, as organizations develop a culture that’s more supportive of remote work, they can pursue opportunities to reduce real estate and overhead costs.

Clearly getting on board with remote work capabilities will be critical if you’re in business to remain competitive.

So what will it take? As I outlined in my talk at CA World last month, my obvious answer is a Cisco Intelligent Network. Essentially, it puts IT back in control, even in the face of BYOD, cloud, virtualization, and video because they’re able to use services embedded throughout the intelligent network to drive efficiency.

One example I talked about at CA World involved launching a new product or service. Something of that scale takes expertise from all over the company: Engineering, marketing, sales, support and manufacturing plus a host of supporting people. Creating that virtual team can be tricky and time consuming.  But the Cisco Intelligent Network makes this easy.  It provides presence and location—it knows where people are and whether they are free or busy.  It can automatically connect those people – whether they are in the office, at home, or on a mobile device. And, it selects the best communication method to reach that expert.

Because it’s designed to deliver the virtualized future today, the Intelligent Network allows for seamless any-to-any collaboration among employees, partners, and customers—and anywhere productivity. So, the future doesn’t need to be out of reach. In fact, as you begin to approach it, you might just find yourself experiencing the power of now.

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