What ISVs Need to Know About the Evolving Digital Workplace

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Will the software applications you develop remain relevant as the digital workplace evolves? Here are trends you need to watch as companies — from global enterprises to SMBs in all vertical markets — find ways to use technology to conduct business more efficiently and profitably.

Better Collaboration Methods

Otto Sanchez, director of post-sales engineering —  collaboration at InterVision, sees increasing adoption of work stream collaboration tools, which act as a communications and collaboration hub for many workers that need to exchange information in real-time in a secure way from the cloud.

He says there is a preference for unified communications and collaboration (UCC) tools. Sanchez explains, “These tools allow workers to interact better among themselves, with customers and more importantly, with other specific business processes and applications in an automated way, bringing even more efficiencies to the way work is conducted.”

“Digital meeting capabilities are currently delivered from the cloud. However, the market will start seeing a democratization in video-meeting enablement for spaces such as huddle rooms and small open collaborative spaces, also managed from the cloud, offering enhanced collaboration experiences for disperse teams. At the same time, this will remove end-user friction and video deployment complexity, which will lower overall solution costs and foster live team interactions” Sanchez adds. “In the past, these experiences were only available on large conference rooms for companies that could afford the high costs of such technology; in the next 12 months, these experiences will be more widely available to spaces where people collaborate the most.”

Sanchez says there is also a trend toward artificial intelligence (AI) and natural language processing (NLP) capabilities powering cloud-based UCC applications. Sanchez says this will result in streamlined conversational and processing interfaces, which will simplify daily tasks and automate customer and end-user interactions.

“For example, intelligent assistants are being deployed on meetings spaces — like huddle rooms — so operating a meeting via voice commands is possible, bringing similar capabilities from commercial solutions to the enterprise. More and more, we will be seeing that the gap will close between conversational interfaces we use at home versus at work.”

Virtual Assistants Join the Digital Office Team

As consumers’ adoption of virtual assistants like Siri and Alexa increases, so does the demand for similar solutions in the workplace. Jeff Ton, SVP of product development and strategic alliances at InterVision, says, “Combining these technologies with smart home devices have changed the way we live. In 2019, they will change the way we work.

“Imagine saying, ‘Siri, please book my trip to LA.’ Siri, knowing your preferred airline and car rental agency, makes all the necessary arrangements. She also knows your travel preferences and can make decisions, such as your desire to never fly east to go west or to schedule the red-eye so you can make it home to celebrate your granddaughter’s birthday. After making all the bookings, your calendar is automatically updated with confirmation numbers, and she remembers to check in for your flights exactly 24 hours in advance.”

Securing the Digital Workplace

In addition to the benefits of the digital workplace, businesses will encounter new challenges.

Ben Miller, senior cloud solutions architect at InterVision, says Microsoft’s addition of Desktop as a Service in 2018 has the potential to alleviate some of the oldest IT endpoint burdens like hardware and operating system maintenance, licensing, backup, and remote access. “However, with this improvement comes concerns about an always-available desktop secured by a cloud provider. We hear about breaches to information in the news frequently. Organizations are going to have to weigh the value of conquering the bring your own device (BYOD) flood and remote access for their staff with the security risks it imposes. In 2019, businesses will be having these discussions earlier than they would have expected based on the old model of DIY virtual desktop infrastructure,” says Miller.

Meet the Demand

Aligning the applications you develop with these trends and minimizing challenges users will face with adoption can directly impact the success of your ISV. Are your applications ready to take your clients to the next level of digital transformation? 

Bernadette Wilson

Bernadette Wilson, a DevPro Journal contributor, has 19 years of experience as a journalist, writer, editor, and B2B marketer.

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Bernadette Wilson

Bernadette Wilson, a DevPro Journal contributor, has 19 years of experience as a journalist, writer, editor, and B2B marketer.