2020 has been a difficult year that none of us will forget. But in the workplace, we’ve witnessed an incredible metamorphosis.
In April 2020, 67.3% of UK managers, directors and senior officials did some or all of their work at home. In fact, almost half the entire UK workforce – some 46.6% of working people – worked from home for some time each week.
Who could have predicted that in 2019?
The pandemic has changed everything. It’s sent us into uncharted territory at rapid pace, transforming the way that we work, how we think and how we serve customers. And out of necessity, it’s driven fundamental changes in what networks need to deliver for businesses.
We’re talking about digital roadmaps being accelerated by years
We see a prime example of this change in one of our customers: a leading cancer hospital. Fewer patients can now be seen in person, so it’s fundamental that doctors have ultra-reliable and inherently secure ways to deliver care remotely, such as high-quality video conferencing. What’s more, they need access to this fast, as lives quite literally depend on it.
We’re seeing similar technology trends across other industries. Retailers, financial services and utility companies are all being forced to rapidly transform their service delivery. Call centre staff now need reliable, secure access to confidential customer information when working from home, while customers at the other end of the phone need reassurance that their sensitive data remains protected in this new world order.
Manufacturers, product designers, architects: all need a reliable way to share large amounts of data and huge files like AutoCAD drawings. Speed is of the essence, while the quality of the connection could make the difference between business success and failure.
The question is, how can these organisations realise this transformation?
It may be an overused word in our industry, but the answer is agility. Having a flexible, agile network that can evolve at speed and at scale is fundamental if you want your organisation to adapt and be more resilient as business models, customer needs and workplaces continue to evolve in new and unexpected ways.
By having the flex within your network infrastructure – coupled with a secure, quick and easy connection to public clouds like AWS and Azure – you can continue to transform, innovate and deliver the digital services and experiences your customers, patients and staff rely upon.
Next-generation SD-WAN services are the key to an agile, future-proof business
VMware SD-WAN™, added to BT’s next generation of cloud-optimised managed network services, is designed to give customers an unparalleled choice of SD-WAN services. Together, they provide a powerful way to enable truly flexible working, with optimised access from branch to cloud and SaaS applications. Features like application-aware routing mean you can prioritise performance where it’s needed most, whether that be your executives, your knowledge workers or your customer-facing staff.
“SD-WAN is fundamentally important to our customers as they look to improve how their business functions and successfully navigate the unknown. Our partnership with VMware, industry leaders in WAN edge infrastructure, enables us to support those customers with a dynamic, agile network that not only makes it quick and easy to connect to the public cloud but with VMware’s new SASE platform, makes it super secure too. This combination of market-leading SD-WAN technology and our own world-class network and managed services portfolio is the perfect alliance to support the ever-changing needs of our customers.”
Scott Cowling, Director of network solutions, BT
Importantly, it’s not just us who think it’s great: VMware has been named a Leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for WAN Edge Infrastructure for the third year in a row.
In a climate where it’s impossible to predict what’s ahead, that kind of assurance is worth its weight in gold.