Remote work was gaining steam even before the pandemic. Many of us started our workday first thing in the morning, checking email and work calendars on a smartphone immediately after waking up. Or maybe we hopped on video conference calls with colleagues on the other side of the world before beginning our commute.

 

The pandemic extended these work-from-home hours while introducing a new group of people to the flexibility and convenience of remote work. Today, employees across industries are using personal or company-issued devices to perform a full range of work tasks, including building analytics reports, collaborating on engineering designs, checking patient medical records and responding to customer inquiries.

 

It should come as no surprise that many people enjoy working remotely. According to a pre-pandemic survey from Owl Labs and GlobalWorkplaceAnalytics.com, a full 80 percent of U.S. respondents said they would like to work from home at least some of the time. In fact, more than a third would take a pay cut of up to 5 percent to work remotely.

 

Fortunately, many organizations already provide some remote-work options. As of 2019, a majority of organizations (69 percent) worldwide already had an ad-hoc telecommuting policy, according to the Society for Human Resource Management.

 

Recent economic conditions will likely drive even more organizations toward remote work. Beyond facilitating remote work for business resilience, organizations increasingly recognize the value of adopting a remote-first strategy to boost employee satisfaction, increase productivity and attract highly skilled workers from a wide geographic area.

 

Still, important questions remain: What are the best ways for organizations to provide access to the apps and resources that employees require for their jobs? And how can organizations control the complexity of managing remote-work solutions, especially as the number of remote workers grows?

 

Empower employees and streamline administration with digital workspaces

For many organizations, a digital workspace solution is the best way to provide simple, secure access to vital apps and resources—without adding excessive administrative complexity. Whether you want to implement a digital workspace to strengthen your business resilience strategy or launch a remote-first initiative, consider five key requirements as you select and deploy a new solution.

1. Employee-first flexibility

Take into account the devices that employees will use throughout the day and the locations from which they need to work. Select a digital workspace solution that will provide the requisite level of flexibility so you can keep up with the demands of employees and their work departments.

 

2. Anytime, anywhere access to apps

Make sure the digital workspace solution can provide access to the full range of apps employees might need to use—including legacy apps and web apps. Productivity can quickly wane if employees can’t use the tools they need to complete tasks. Accessing those tools should be secure but simple: Choose a solution that supports single sign-on so employees don’t have to struggle to remember multiple passwords.

 

3. Efficient device management

Manage all devices accessing corporate data through a single platform. Efficient device management is necessary in a digital workspace solution; it’s the only way to deliver a consistent user experience across devices that is also highly secure. Device management capabilities allow you to manage security policies across a diverse and growing array of devices—without adding excessive administrative work.

 

4. Continuous measurement and optimization

Measure adoption continuously to optimize digital workspace experiences. Select a solution that enables you to spot adoption trends, pinpoint experience issues and identify potential security gaps.

 

5. Scalability through automation

Efficiently scale your digital workspace deployment and its management as your remote workforce expands. Automation is critical. It can help streamline a full range of tasks, including onboarding new employees, adding new devices, deploying apps, installing patches and updates, and remediating compliance issues. You should be able to complete these tasks without generating tickets that require administrators or application owners to take manual actions. Automation minimizes operational costs, helps eliminate gaps in security and reduces compliance problems.

 

Discover what’s possible with VMware

Digital workspaces can help you address immediate challenges caused by unexpected disruptions, as well as prepare for a future in which more employees work remotely. With the right solution, you can provide simple, secure access to apps and data from any device, while streamlining management and safeguarding your business assets.

For more details on how to plan a digital workspace, download the e-book “The 5 Critical Requirements for the Digital Workspace.” ▪

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