Being effective in your job doesn’t always mean that you need to be there. In fact, many would argue that their productivity increases drastically when they are given the flexibility to work wherever they want as long as they can stay connected. If that means staying off of a plane for a business trip, even better because it also saves the company money.
Enter video conferencing, the tool that enables users to be part of the discussion without being there. But what does “there” really mean in today’s world? With mobile technologies, including video, transforming how and where we work, the concept of “there” is really anywhere you want it to be. “There” can be a traditional office that is now equipped with video technologies that enable collaboration with others across the world without having to travel in order to conduct business. It can also be working remotely and still being part of your business community with mobile video and other applications that allow users to work at home, at a coffee shop or anywhere they like.
The move to stay connected at anytime from anywhere has been engaged by many organizations including the U.S. Federal Government. To help agency’s ensure productivity while cutting travel costs the House of Representatives introduced a bill that would allow absent Congress members to vote via video conferencing. The bill allows members to cast votes remotely over video and be treated as if they were present in person at meetings.
Government members are also extending this sentiment beyond the walls of Congress as Representative Michael Fitzpatrick also introduced a new bill — H.R. 2643, the Stay In Place, Cut the Waste Act of 2013 — to review agencies’ efforts to reduce travel spending and develop a plan to cut travel expenses by 50 percent through the use of video conferencing technologies.
By the end of 2013, the number of mobile-connected devices will exceed the number of people on earth, and by 2017 there will be nearly 1.4 mobile devices per person. As the consumption of mobile devices increases, so does the need for businesses to change the way they work to reap the benefits. Investment in IT is vital if businesses are to take full advantage of new ways of working – with the best tools and solutions to achieve high levels of workforce connectivity.
The increase in mobile devices creates a great opportunity for businesses. A workforce using mobile devices allows for flexible working practices and more freedom to work whenever, wherever, making the workforce better connected. 82% of visitors to the Cisco Jabber Hub say improved productivity is a direct result of a better connected workforce. Better connections mean quicker decisions are made, improving employee response rates and decision making speed.
Businesses need to address the IT challenges of created by mobility and invest in the most suitable solutions for their business. Unified Communication solutions like Cisco Jabber integrate voice, video, instant messaging, presence, voice messaging and conferencing capabilities. It allows staff to choose the most suitable tools for their needs. This means the workforce can be productive from anywhere, on any device. Read More »
As today’s workforce continues to become more mobile and adopt the “on-the-go” mentality both at home and at work, their needs are also evolving. Companies need to respond. Empowering employees to work anytime, anywhere will improve efficiencies and increase productivity. When the staff takes their work outside of office walls, an environment of knowledge, sharing and creativity across local, regional and global teams is created naturally. The Internet of Everything (IoE) is a clear driver in this new collaborative environment as companies continue to connect more people, devices, processes and data. This collaborative environment, in turn, also empowers a company as a whole through the insights and data exchanged.
In one of my previous posts, How Not Where Is What Matters Most in a Collaborative Work Environment, I noted that mobile and remote workers have higher performance ratings than traditional workers. Are these connections increasing the comfort level with utilizing remote resources on a consistent basis, such as remote mentoring or collaboration with global teams? Is it the extended connection to global colleagues and customers to obtain better insight and decisions? Or, is it the combination? Read More »
Nothing should be sacrified at the altar of virtualization
Embedded communications that embrace more than just voice are a great start. But as you can see, add in the creature comforts we expect such as normal sized handsets, keypads or caller ID notification….this all helps us forget that amazing technology going on the backside…lets us focus on the communication.
Behind the Storylines
Our spotlight series continues to morph a bit and try to find its sea legs. We are still going to change a few of story-telling methods in this series going forward…but a couple of fun things we did here that I hope are appreciated. The show is embedded at the bottom of this post so you can watch it..but first, a few notes on what we did here.
We started to make fun of ‘scenarios.’ One of the hardest things about cost-effective corporate video is finding unique visuals. Even the little we did in this episode took an extra day…and that is nothing when it comes to most productions. What we did a little different here, was to create the ‘office scenario’ to help get our point across..but instead of using actors and falling prey to the easy cheese that usually develops here..we tried just doing it ourselves and then ‘breaking the 4th wall’ every so often to explain a point to the audience. Our hope is that we remain educational and a little bit fun. We should never be taken too seriously…but you won’t mistake us for actors anytime soon.
We used a real whiteboard. Most video pro’s (including our own Producer Steve Ewertz) hate whiteboards. I agree with them from a TV perspective. They are really hard to light without getting hot spots/glares, everyone looks washed out in front of them…and the contrast when people write is just not that great. But as a Cisco guy, I love whiteboards. I love how much better every engineer can communicate when they have a pen in their hand. So Steve agreed to let us do this one with Jimmy Ray explaining the ‘tech behind the tech’ and I think with the two cameras and two lights we used…this scene came out great. Plus, I think it feels natural.
Over 200 attendees were present for the opening of two different Co-Innovate Labs (COIL) recently. The COIL is charged with accelerating co-innovation within the SAP partner ecosystem.
This lab is part of the company’s global R&D network and it offers a hands-on environment for SAP, partners and customers to work together on current and future technologies.
The Co-Innovation Lab Singapore is located at SAP’s Asia headquarters in Singapore. It joins a global network of existing co-innovation facilities in Palo Alto (California, USA), São Paulo (Brazil), Walldorf (Germany), Moscow (Russia), Bangalore (India), Shanghai (China) and Tokyo (Japan).
SAP Co-Innovation Lab Singapore is supported by key technology partners Cisco, Intel, NetApp and VMware. Each company provided its latest generation of hardware and software products to the facility’s computing centre, which operates its own private cloud as well as the SAP HANA in-memory platform.
Co-Innovation Lab Singapore has already helped Singapore-based startup ZelRealm Interactive improve their solution, said the company. They developed Sogamo to help game developers optimise and better monetise their online games. Similarly, YFind Technologies, a Singapore-based company, is collaborating with SAP R&D and SAP Co-Innovation Labs to build a product that enables mobile shopping and checkout in retail stores and creates a social network in the supply chain in order to personalise offers and sense demands from customers in real-time for upstream suppliers.
The Coil Lab in Shanghai officially opened March 5th and will server the same purpose as the others around the globe
Cisco, with its Unified Computing System Server Platform and Enterprise Networking Products, and SAP, with SAP HANA, Business Suite, Precision Retail, and Jabber integration, continue to partner in order to bring the best solutions and collaborative products to the world.