Hybrid Work: How Can Businesses Make it Work? – UC Today

Hybrid Work: How Can Businesses Make it Work? – UC Today

Hybrid Work: How Can Businesses Make it Work? – UC Today 0 0 Alan Dickson

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RingCentral’s Marco Meier talks through the challenges and solutions 
It’s no secret that hybrid working has become the chosen model for many businesses, particularly as offices open up worldwide. 
However, companies have a lot of work to do once they’ve made this decision. How many days do employees need to be in the office? Are you referring to true remote working, or do you actually mean home working? How will colleagues collaborate?  
What is certain is that technology will play a massive role in making an organisation’s chosen model successful, but this poses a challenge. The vast majority of businesses had to adopt new technology overnight to work through lockdown in 2020. As their employees start to return to offices, they quickly find that the new does not integrate so well with the old. 
“Companies were not prepared to have people work from home, so they chose tools to adapt quickly,” said Marco Meier, RingCentral AVP for Global Service Providers in the DACH region. 
“Those tools are all in siloes; they’ve got phones in the office, and they got a cloud-based video solution, but they’re not integrated at all. 
“The opportunity is to move to a vendor that supports everything – phone, messaging and video.” 
Meier said that companies need to move away from the “patchwork” of technology they’ve inadvertently created over the past two years, and towards open platforms that integrate not just their communication tools, but also their wider IT estate. Cloud-based tools are the most effective for enabling anywhere working and ensuring consistency across multiple devices and locations. 
RingCentral’s approach is to complement the technology a business is already using, Meier added. 
“If an enterprise has not chosen a UC provider, then, of course, we will lead with our platform,” he explained. 
“But if they’ve already selected a chat application from a competitor, we won’t try and compete; we’ll try and complete the solution through our integrations. 
“We integrate with Microsoft Teams and Google, and we try and differentiate on those integrations with our own capabilities.” 
Ultimately, the goal is to provide a strong employee experience that promotes both well-being and productivity – with technology being an enabler, not a hindrance. With a cloud platform, this also extends to the IT team because crucial elements such as cybersecurity are placed in the hands of the vendor, freeing them up to focus on more strategic tasks. 
Meier said that the German market is set to see the highest growth in UCaaS over the next few years, partly because the country’s move to the cloud is behind others on the continent. German businesses have typically been hesitant about moving to the cloud but are coming around to the idea, having been forced to use cloud products over the past two years. 
Businesses now need to settle on communication and collaboration infrastructure designed for the long term, not as a stop-gap. The journey to this end goal can take some time, Meier explained. 
“We have to make sure that CIOs understand they don’t get just one shot at this,” he added.  
“You can do it in phases; maybe you want to migrate your office workers first, then your agents, for example. 
“When we approach these discussions with businesses, it’s key they understand that they’ll get true mobility if they get all these components from a single vendor. That should make life easier for the IT organisation.” 
The challenge now facing businesses is delivering accessibility, security and functionality to a hybrid workforce through their technology choices. These are among the themes of next week’s Digital X event in Cologne. 
Under the banner of ‘shaping tomorrow together’, Digital X aims to illuminate the present and future digital issues and make technologies tangible. Meier and RingCentral will be talking to German businesses about their technology choices in light of hybrid work demands. 
Anyone wishing to discuss their business communications challenges and solutions can arrange an on-site meeting with RingCentral. Find out more about Digital X online. 
 
 
 
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