You are probably thinking that the title of this blog seems a little bizarre given that I work at one of the largest networking companies in the world. The truth is I felt compelled to write about the role of the network in today’s collaboration solutions because the importance of the network is not always apparent and well understood.
A good example of how network-enabled collaboration solutions can be used is that of a hospital or healthcare organization. The hospital is only as good as its network of services, providers and the accompanying medical infrastructure that support the organization — they all leverage each other in various different ways. Physicians can take advantage of mind share and resources and have information at hand from different sources to make the right decisions. This is what enables doctors and nurses to perform their best work and provide top quality care to the people they serve.
Collaboration technologies and solutions make that collaborative work environment a reality and aid in the diagnosis and care of patients — in some cases even being able to remotely provide medical care by a specialist that may be located half way around the world. The importance of the underlying network in this instance is critical to both physicians and patients alike. How would the network have any effect on the use of interactive video in telemedicine? Well, let’s think of it from the experience point of view. What would the consequences be for a patient if the video stream they were using in a telemedicine consult was choppy or grainy and the doctor couldn’t get just the right view of the patient to make the right diagnosis? Let’s just say I would not want to be the patient in this scenario. A sub-par experience would be unacceptable because even minor details can have an enormous impact on a diagnosis or treatment plan. These collaborative exchanges are what ultimately give the patient the best experience and outcome possible for their individual treatment. A strong network foundation is critical to the delivery of the service and experience in this instance.
Collaboration technologies gaining significant traction in the enterprise today include streaming video, web conferencing and other forms of interactive and dynamic communications — known as rich media. The reason for the uptick in their use is that they offer the most life like, “in-person” collaboration experiences possible today. That is what people want and what ultimately drives them to be more engaged with one another. As described above, the network is critical to the delivery of these types of media. Not just any network architecture will suffice. A network-based architecture optimized for rich media such as Cisco (medianet) provides the intelligent services needed in order to scale, optimize and enhance the performance of voice, video and data – all critical to the delivery of the collaboration experience.
What does this mean? Read More »
Tags: Borderless Networks, Bring your Own Device (BYOD), collaboration, medianet, network-enabled collaboration, standards, telemedicine
Enabling bring-your-own-device (BYOD) and rich-media collaboration applications can help increase productivity, deliver superior employee collaboration, and improve business agility. The right campus access network can simplify BYOD and collaboration so that you can free up time to focus on strategic projects.
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Tags: Bring your Own Device (BYOD), byod, catalyst switch, Cisco Catalyst 4500E, collaboration applications, management, unified access
Several years ago, I had a conversation with an IT manager about his company’s network security that I still remember today. He said: “We’re losing our battle over internal network security. We cannot keep up with our vendors and contractors who bring in all kinds of devices to our network. We may turn our internal network into a DMZ.” Turning an internal network into a DMZ was probably an extreme case at that time but it showed the underlying problem: if you don’t have control over what’s happening on your network, you’ll have an uphill battle in your hands.
Today, the challenge has intensified due to the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend. There are speculations that corporate networks may eventually turn out to be the equivalent of college networks where users routinely bring their own personal devices. Because personal devices generally do not have the same level of security as IT-owned assets, they tend to have more vulnerabilities and it’s harder to protect sensitive information and intellectual property on these devices. The adage, “security risks walk in the door with employees” is quickly becoming a reality that organizations must address.
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Tags: 802.11ac, Bring your Own Device (BYOD), byod, DMZ, enterprise network, MDM, Mobile Device Management, UA, unified access
Based on the conversations I have every day with Cisco customers, the impact of mobility on organizations cannot be denied.
Abundant data details how the proliferation of mobile devices is affecting communications, collaboration, and the way we do business today. For example, Cisco recently commissioned a Forrester Research report that looks at mobility, virtualization, and other enterprise-level technology initiatives. Nearly half the firms surveyed are implementing “bring your own device” (BYOD) programs to support employee-owned devices.
I’ve outlined my position in the past: BYOD is an opportunity, not a threat. There are profound benefits for organizations that embrace BYOD and mobilize the collaboration experience.
Collaboration is increasingly taking place on personal and company-provided mobile devices. According to a Read More »
Tags: Bring your Own Device (BYOD), Cisco IBSG, Cisco Services, collaboration, enterprise tablets, Forrester Research, mobile collaboration, Smartphones, survey
I’m one of the lucky ones. Many of my peers work in companies that aren’t as forward looking about IT as Cisco is. Where they struggle to keep up with the demands of today’s employees, I’m fortunate to work in an environment that offers workspace flexibility and access to telepresence, web conferencing, and a social platform based largely on the employee’s choice of device.
That’s not to say that we’ve got it all figured out at Cisco. As I onboard new college graduates, I, too, find myself struggling to meet their expectations. I think we’ve entered a phase in which all business and IT leaders will lag slightly behind the workplace expectations of the new generation.
To better understand this fundamental shift, we recently commissioned Forrester Research to look specifically at mobility, virtualization, and other enterprise-level technology initiatives. Read More »
Tags: Bring your Own Device (BYOD), Cisco WebEx Social, collaboration, Forrester Research, mobility, next-generation workplace, TelePresence, virtualization, web conferencing