Communication, Collaboration, and the Cloud
By: Destiny Heimbecker, Vistacom Marketing Manager
The days of being tied to one office location are long gone. Businesses of all sizes are expanding their networks without having to open new locations, thanks to videoconferencing technology. Enterprise-sized businesses in particular are expanding their reach, with employees able to work from anywhere in the world, often from home. Even small and mid-sized businesses are using the latest collaboration technology to expand their businesses without expanding their costs. However, collaboration is changing.
A Better and Bigger Cloud
Businesses and consumers alike use cloud technology on a daily basis for just about everything—from storing photos to storing highly sensitive professional documents. Many mergers and takeovers are happening in the cloud space, which will add up, eventually, to a much improved cloud.
The AV Impact: Think about the Cisco acquisition of Acano and what that means to the evolution of collaboration. As cloud becomes more readily accessible and usable by business, it changes the way that AV consumers look to leverage the cloud in their system integration deployments.
Fully Integrated Platforms
Most businesses have a whole host of platforms, from cloud-based collaboration software to customer relationship management (CRM) systems. As technology advances, it becomes more compatible with other platforms. In the near future, businesses will benefit from collaboration platforms that merge effortlessly with other software, such as CRM and analytics programs. Full integration like this will lead to improved visibility and productivity.
The AV Impact: User experience is driving business like never before. With the powerful impact of word of mouth on technology adoption, companies are looking for solutions that are fully integrated. We have seen this with the growth of applications like Cisco Spark, which allows you to jump into a video call and view shared screens from wherever you are. With the Spark app., you can stay in touch across all your devices, so you can be part of the conversation from anywhere. Integrators will need to consider this as they try to develop more simple approaches for businesses to utilize AV without needing to learn an entirely new solution or platform.
Security Concerns Continue to be a Priority
Businesses are switching to cloud-based technology at breakneck speed. Mobility is the biggest advancement in technology yet, giving businesses the ability to grow while cutting costs. However, the increase in cloud technology will lead to an increase in security concerns. In fact, security is likely to become the biggest concern in the information and communications industry.
As an example, Cisco offers a cloud-delivered web proxy. Their Cloud Web Security product provides security and control for the distributed enterprise across one of the top attack vectors: the web. Users are protected on any device and in any location through Cisco worldwide threat intelligence and advanced threat defense capabilities.
The AV Impact: Security continues to be a huge priority for all businesses. As compliance and secure data are critical to business survival, any system that sees the network will be highly scrutinized. AV’s understanding of security needs to continue to grow so their important role in communication isn’t diminished as businesses need to be secure but equally need to communicate with the outside world. That is why an AV integrator with a strong understanding of collaboration is extremely important.
The future of workplace collaboration is promising. From fully integrated platforms to increased security, businesses have a lot to look forward to. As information and communication technology evolves, we're sure to see lower costs and more features, and that, of course, means more benefits.