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Advantages of adapting your company to the "anywhere operations” model

The New Normal: Remote Operations

The Covid-19  pandemic barely started 2 years ago, although it feels like there was a whole different world before and after social distancing became a necessity. Now, with the cases dropping and things going back to how they used to be, it’s clear that traditional ways of operating are a thing of the past. Remote became the new normal, and companies around the world had a pleasant surprise: remote operations are not only possible, but they also come with plenty of advantages. 

According to Gartner, through 2023, 40% of organizations will blend virtual and physical experiences, leading to increased workforce productivity and customer reach. So let's get something clear, the workplaces of the future will evolve in response to the pandemic regardless of whether they are service offices or automobile manufacturing plants; a next normal where employees, contractors, business partners, and customers will be remote from each other.

What are “anywhere operations”?

Anywhere operation is an organizational model that allows IT companies to fully operate remotely while supporting customer service, enabling employees, and managing the deployment of products/services from anywhere in the world.

Anywhere operations, also known as “remote operations”, create decentralized models, enabling better business flexibility and access to a broader talent pool. This means that companies can perform at the same scale and with the same effectiveness across a wide range of roles and responsibilities, regardless of their geographic location. 

A successful anywhere operations strategy should be people-centric and location-independent. This is possible thanks to cloud technology and a decentralized infrastructure independent of one location, server, firewall, etc. And while it is undoubtedly a functional model for some businesses, it presents limitations for many organizations, especially IT companies. This is where anywhere operations come in to solve the management limitations of work from home. It can be considered as the next step of working from home. The anywhere operations model utilizes new management solutions and a decentralized infrastructure to allow IT companies to be genuinely independent of physical location.

Anywhere Operations Vs Remote Work

Work from home allows companies to continue operations without the need for employees to be at the office. And even if this sounds a lot as the anywhere operations model, this last one goes beyond. Therefore it’s important to fully understand the differences between these two models to successfully implement an anywhere operations strategy. 

Even is we might consider remote work as a sub-set of anywhere operations, anywhere operations it’s a larger universe comprising of processes and procedures where technology-driven solutions are crucial to handle a decentralized work infrastructure, ​​grating both employees and customers access to information, regardless of their location. 

On that note, anywhere operations allow teams secure remote access that enables them to collaborate and work effectively as if they were on-premises. While remote work is just a mechanism of workers performing their tasks in a remote location, anywhere operations require a full deployment of processes and tools to make employees’ work easier and as collaborative as possible.

Finally, one of the biggest differences between remote operations and remote work is that anywhere operations goes beyond the workforce to embrace customers. While Remote work just focuses on the company’s personnel, anywhere operations also take the customer into play; customers, allowing them to be part of the organization and collaborate with it. 

Benefits of Anywhere Operations

Thanks to the constant development of new technologies and software, the world of IT and tech companies advance faster than any other industry. As stated before, Remote is here to stay. According to Forrester the number of remote workers at the end of 2021 was 3x pre-pandemic levels and 74% of professionals expect remote work to become standard.

This presents CTOs with the challenge of staying up to date with new advancements to support the company’s growth while managing the high costs of upgrading and maintaining an IT infrastructure. Anywhere Operations can enhance companies’s performance, by reducing costs of aging hardware, improving employee and customer experience, and giving companies access to a broad talent pool of experts ready to join the team. 

Let’s take a closer look at these benefits:

Customer Support

Anywhere operations are not just for employees. It also allows companies to offer better customer experiences. One example of this is customer service. 

Providing the best customer service has always been a challenge. Every year the quality standard gets higher, and customers get used to that. If there is no advancement in a company’s customer service, then they get left behind no matter how good the product is.

In fact, 33% of Americans report they will consider switching companies after a single instance of poor service. With that in mind, it’s not difficult to understand why $62 billion are lost annually by U.S. companies due to poor customer service. 

Anywhere operations allow companies to solve this issue by giving them the capability to employ workers in different time zones. Thanks to the decentralized infrastructure, workers can collaborate and share information as if they were in an office together and offer quick customer service at any time. Now customers don’t have to wait until the next day to get a solution for their problems.

Collaboration and productivity

The COVID-19 pandemic rushed companies into a work-from-home modality, however many of them didn’t adapt well to this change. Mainly because of remote work tools and because they knew that eventually, they would go back to the office, they thought of work from home as a temporary solution as these tools have limitations.

Well, these limitations can be solved by anywhere operations. This model lets employees access company data and systems at any moment from any device, boosting collaboration and productivity. In addition, anywhere operations empower employees by allowing them to work in their own schedule while achieving the company goals. It’s not surprising that 77% of telecommuters report being more productive than in an office.

Secure remote access

Secure remote access means that people in an organization can access any relevant data from any device at any moment from anywhere in the world with protection protocols against cyber threats.  Some examples of cybersecurity strategies that work with anywhere operations are multifactor and password-less authentication, Zero Trust Network Access, and Secure Access Service Edge.

Having secure remote access is a priority for any remote work, and cloud infrastructure is the only way to achieve it.

Disaster recovery

Another thing that secure remote access helps with is disaster recovery (DR). Many external factors can impede a business from running properly. Factors like natural disasters or even the COVID-19 pandemic, which forced many unprepared companies to change into a work-from-home modality, Resulting in disruption of business. 

With an anywhere operations model with a proper cloud infrastructure in place, a DR plan becomes simpler. Since physical factors don’t affect and everything is remotely accessible, businesses can continue operating smoothly.

Automation

Another benefit of anywhere operations is that its decentralized cloud infrastructure allows the automation of various processes. Companies worldwide are automating as many processes as possible because they have figured out that employees spend a lot of time on repetitive manual tasks. 

These tasks can become frustrating and even lead to human errors. Automation eliminates that factor. A company can automate transactions, approvals, and workflows, among other processes, to free employees from manual tasks that only waste time. In addition, companies are also able to automate product and service deployment. Automation in combination with AI is a great tool to let your employees spend their time solving complex issues instead of doing mundane tasks.

Cost efficiency

Migrating from the current system to a cloud-based, anywhere operations model can seem like an expensive project. However, in the short and long term, it is cost-effective.

What really is expensive is hardware. The costs of upgrading and maintaining an aging IT infrastructure are much more expensive. Now add the fact that as the IT equipment ages, its performance drops considerably. This is due to the fact that software is based on current technology, giving hardware a short lifespan. Since you don’t have to worry about these costs, anywhere operations end up being a lower-cost alternative. 

Talent

One of the biggest limitations for businesses that are not using an anywhere operations model is talent acquisition. For a person to be hired, they don’t only need the proper qualifications, but they also need to live in the same city as the office. This fact reduces the talent pool significantly. 

While this might sound like a problem work from home solves, it still has limitations compared to anywhere operations. Oftentimes, a work-from-home role still requires that the employee is near the office for many reasons. With anywhere operations, workers should be able to literally be anywhere and still be able to access relevant information for their work. 

Companies that apply this strategy successfully have no geographical limitations for hiring. They can focus on building the right team and not worry about relocation or sponsorships. A great way for organizations to handle talent acquisition once they are free of geographical limitations is through nearshore staff augmentation. 

At Intersog we help you overcome the tech talent shortage in the tech industry. We provide you a flexible nearshore workforce solution of highly skilled tech talent. We have 16 years of experience extending engineering and development teams with highly skilled global tech talent through nearshore staff augmentation solutions.

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