When organizations around the world began shifting their workforces in response to the COVID-19 crisis, the question on everyone’s mind was “When will things go back to normal?” When social media giant Twitter announced it would be allowing employees to work remotely permanently, the conversation took a quick shift: Forget normal, are traditional offices gone for good?

As other companies (many concentrated in the tech industry) followed suit, it has lent credence to the idea that offices are a thing of the past. But even with these developments, many businesses are reiterating their commitment to the option of a “home base,” and commercial real estate firm CBRE predicts office rentals to return to pre-COVID levels by the start of 2022– a relatively quick recovery. 

So what does all this mean? Ultimately, the future of work is not a binary between “office” and “no office.” In fact, the future workplace ahead of us is the one that cloud and hybrid solutions like Egnyte were specifically engineered to enable: a flexible environment where both “traditional” offices and dispersed workforces are equally valid and equally equipped for success. 

When companies make the leap to remote productivity, the tools they provide for employees outside the office result in smoother communication and collaboration with employees inside the office, as well.

This requires ensuring a number of things beyond hardware and software, and even beyond access to critical content and files. Concerns like seamless collaboration, offline access, optimized upload/download capabilities for spotty connectivity, and data security must now take precedence over simply getting the work done– and any improvements made in these areas will automatically have a positive impact on the security and productivity inside the office, as well.

For years, working anywhere from outside the office was more a novelty than a standard, and even with the rise in remote working over the last decade, many companies were ill-equipped to provide remote employees with much support beyond a laptop and a VPN. But when companies make the leap to remote productivity, either before or as a response to COVID, the tools they provide for employees outside the office result in smoother communication and collaboration with employees inside the office, as well, creating an equitable workplace for everyone from the admin in the office to the sales manager traveling through their territory to the CEO working from 35,000 feet in an aircraft.

If you’re interested in reading more of Egnyte’s perspectives on productivity and flexibility, check out our recent on-demand webinar with IK Investment Partners and Brookfield, “Reinventing File Services for Remote Work” or check out our Business Continuity Resource Center

 

Photo by Helena Lopes on Unsplash

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