The COVID-19 pandemic necessitated a fully remote workforce almost overnight. Supporting communication and collaboration for employees is an essential step in ensuring resilience, but it has tested legacy infrastructure and security configurations. And for CIOs this translates into greater challenges than ever.
The situation and expectations for CIOs
CIOs must now keep their organization’s workforce connected, collaborating and productive, with the right tools, which are resilient, secure and scalable. But maximizing performance and security while optimizing cost efficiencies seem impossible at this new scale. However, it’s essential to keep employees motivated and build trust across all stakeholders.
At the same time there are familiar but massively increased expectations around security and resilience, now that organizations have effectively opened their perimeter to allow the entire workforce to work from home.
Seven actions for CIOs
1. Get on top of budgets and buying relationships
Every cent of spend counts now, so rapidly shut down any in-flight projects that can be deferred. Revise and renew contractual relationships with technology providers so they are ready to deliver on a greater scale, fast. Mature the relationship between network and security operation teams for collaboration on common tooling platforms and budgeting.
2. Rethink infrastructure
There is a new kind of workforce to support as we return to work. It needs a flexible communications platform and other new infrastructure that supports collaboration, remote working, and higher levels of automation in operations.
3. Increase cybersecurity
Threats are escalating, so organizations need to get up to date with patches and ensure the security of data, and the mobile and virtual infrastructure. CIOs should also help support the security of suppliers, contractors and customers.
4. Accelerate cloud adoption
Drive an ecosystem approach to business operations that will create a collaborative network connecting suppliers, customers, shippers and employees. This will enable faster response times, reduce risk and increase resiliency to ramp up and scale down with an uneven “see-saw” recovery.