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Collaboration Technology and the Future Workplace

May 5, 2014 at 9:17 am PST

I often get asked by customers and partners what it takes to create an activity-based workplace – one that gets employees out of assigned cubicles and gives them a variety of spaces to use based on what they need to do and who they need to connect with throughout the day.

There’s no doubt that the physical environment in which we work is important. Spaces that are clean, well-lit, and attractive can go a long way towards fostering productivity, positive attitudes, and teamwork. But configuring your physical space is just one part of the overall solution.

Embedding collaboration technology into your space design is critical to the success of any workplace transformation effort. Employees need seamless, uninterrupted access to the information they need to get their jobs done. And the tools they use must be as intuitive as their own personal devices.

By “intuitive,” I mean being able to:

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  • Make and receive calls on any device, whether it’s a desk phone, laptop, mobile phone or tablet
  • Access email and corporate intranet anywhere on campus – wirelessly and securely
  • Find people in your organization, check availability, and connect using instant messaging, voice, video, desktop sharing, or conferencing
  • Engage in real-time, face-to-face collaboration and team building sessions – both planned and spontaneous – with colleagues around the globe

These are the ways in which workplace transformation can improve productivity Read More »

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Message to IT: Lead the Charge in Creating the Workplace of the Future

April 14, 2014 at 7:56 am PST

As I visit customers and partners around the world, I see that many of you are excited about the idea of “workplace transformation.” The reason is clear: workplace-related costs are usually among a company’s top three expense items. Optimizing these assets and ensuring that they support the needs of the business is – or should be – a top priority.

collab_cubesWhere we work is becoming more mobile, more flexible, and more collaborative than ever. This has made the traditional cubicle-based workplace – with its overbooked meeting rooms and rows of assigned cubicles sitting empty—obsolete. According to CoreNet Global, around 60% of a company’s desks are vacant at one time because workers are either on the road or in meetings.1 Creating what we call an “activity-based workplace” will help you keep up with evolving work practices, improve employee engagement, and build for the workforce of the future. It will also help you use your physical space more efficiently.

An activity-based workplace unshackles your employees from their desks and gives them a variety of work spaces work_space_2to use based on the activities they need perform at a given time. This could be a typical workstation, an individual quiet room, a small team huddle space, an audio privacy room, a Telepresence room, or an open project area. Whatever the choice, they’ll have seamless access to the tools they need to get their jobs done. Any desk phone becomes “their” phone, and pervasive and secure wireless enables access to the corporate internet, email, calendars, and collaboration solutions such as IM and presence, web, and video conferencing.

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Facilities Is From Mars, IT Is From Venus

March 14, 2012 at 10:00 am PST

How well do the IT and Facilities people get along at your company?  Do they work well together or seem at times to be from different planets?

I’ve been in the Data Center industry for 15 years now, always based in IT but focused on physical infrastructure design and operations.  A key part of my job has been helping IT and Facilities understand one another’s goals, challenges and technologies.  That – as I like to joke – means I have great job security. Read More »

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Energy as a Service is Closer than Ever

IP Energy Cisco White PaperIn the spirit of follow where the data leads you; how thoughtful are we in how we plan for and manage the data center?  As an IT industry we spend a lot of time debating what a data center is and how much of an impact it may have on productivity, competitive advantage, security, business continuity and as of late ecologic impact.  This is perhaps why the most senior, challenge-loving type A’s focus their careers on data centers. 

Whatever your definition, a data center represents the physical manifestation of our digital behaviors across a range of activities.  Data centers also support the most mission critical of all our “day job” applications; web services, email, payroll and so on.  So why is it that our “IT” industry is not aggressively applying more collaborative ingenuity to real world challenges?  A complex question of course but what we are happy to share today is an example of what we’ve been able to do over the last year.

Built on a foundation of Cisco Energy Management Technologies and Services we were able to save $1M USD in one year across 11 labs.  While this is only a pilot, it serves as a proof of concept for things to come…

The case study and white paper now available…

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Data Center Energy Case Study

IP Energy Cisco White PaperIn the spirit of follow where the data leads you; how thoughtful are we in how we plan for and manage the data center?  As an IT industry we spend a lot of time debating what a data center is and how much of an impact it may have on productivity, competitive advantage, security, business continuity and as of late ecologic impact.  This is perhaps why the most senior, challenge-loving type A’s focus their careers on data centers. 

Whatever your definition, a data center represents the physical manifestation of our digital behaviors across a range of activities.  Data centers also support the most mission critical of all our “day job” applications; web services, email, payroll and so on.  So why is it that our “IT” industry is not aggressively applying more collaborative ingenuity to real world challenges?  A complex question of course but what we are happy to share today is an example of what we’ve been able to do over the last year.

Built on a foundation of Cisco Energy Management Technologies and Services we were able to save $1M USD in one year across 11 labs…or data centers depending on your definition.  While this is only a pilot, it serves as a proof of concept for things to come…

The case study and white paper now available…

Read More »

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