« Continuity of Operations Planning, Hot Sites

Digital workplaces could be the hot sites of the future

A digital workplace can save businesses significantly during a crisis situation.
A digital workplace can save businesses significantly during a crisis situation.

As companies invest in emerging technology, the potential for the cloud, mobility and virtualization to house every system they need to do their job remotely opens up new possibilities for business continuity efforts. To this end, some firms are turning to digital workplaces to support disaster recovery planning and provide a fully integrate hot site that employees can access to work from anywhere. This simplifies business continuity while ensuring the stability of operations in the event of a crisis.

According to CMSWire, a digital workspace is defined as "the collection of all the digital tools provided by an organization that allow its employees to do their jobs." This definition intrinsically includes: intranets, unified communications, HR systems, mobile applications, collaborative spaces, supply chain operations and customer relationship management systems, to name a few.

As businesses migrate their systems to the cloud and virtualized servers to varying degrees, they should also be considering the continuity potential for these services. The potential to access CRM tools remotely, using mobile apps for business communications or implementing core work systems from home ensures that employees can do their jobs from anywhere, regardless of a natural disaster or other crisis that may have occurred.

The main advantage of the digital workplace is the simplification of enterprise IT, but viewing it from a disaster preparedness and recovery standpoint allows a company to optimize a very important aspect of operations that is often left by the wayside and forgotten.

The news source suggests that businesses assess their current operational strategies and how they incorporate digital workspaces, define the more enterprise-unique aspects of this term. This will allow them to align current operations with a digital strategy and ensure that their employees reap the benefits both in day-to-day operations and crisis situations. By setting a strong definition of what the digital workplace means to the company and implanting that concept into workers, a firm will be able to optimize workflow around remote access, mobility and the cloud while strengthening its business continuity planning around anytime, anywhere access to key systems and data.

According to Forbes, there are few factors that every business needs to ensure are in place for their digital workplace. This is doubly true if this space is designed to support operations during continuity of operations efforts as well. These factors are:

Communications infrastructure – Communications will play a critical role in getting a digital workplace up and running, especially during a crisis. Investing in high-quality communications infrastructure with cloud support will provide the foundation for operations as a whole.

Device access – Businesses need to ensure that employee devices will have access to each and every tool and service they need to enable remote access and workflow.

Security – Security will play an important role in these efforts as well, both physical and cyber. Firms should invest in high-end cyber security solutions for their digital environments while protecting them from physical threats that could hinder the normal worksite by keeping servers located in a different geographic area. {this sentence runs on a little long, can you split in two}

Usable apps – Finally, companies have to ensure that employees have all the applications they need to do their jobs, which will mean investing in mobile apps and custom building some to fit in with unique business demands.

Ultimately, in order to align normal operations with the new potentials that this technology offers and integrate new systems with disaster recovery tools and plans, companies may need the assistance of expert business continuity consultants. Bringing specialists on board will help expedite these efforts and ensure that when a crisis strikes, employees will be ready to roll out their digital hot site through rote, practice action, smoothly advancing through any disaster toward complete business resumption.