Companies Look to Boost Resiliency After COVID-19 Disrupts Workplaces

The COVID-19 pandemic pushed workplace transformation into hyperdrive, triggering a rush to build corporate resiliency that has created benefits and issues for enterprises, according to a new report published by Information Services Group (ISG), a  global technology research and advisory firm.

The ISG Provider Lens Future of Work – Services and Solutions Archetype report finds the mass migration of workforces to online tools and platforms has led many organizations to address previously overlooked requirements for corporate security and business continuity.

This has overlapped with the need to adapt to new delivery channels, support mechanisms and technology challenges.

“The tectonic changes in work modes and ways of serving customers over the past 18 months have led to new ways of thinking about the future of work,” said Iain Fisher, global leader, ISG Future of Work Solutions. “After creating nearly 800 million new home offices worldwide, companies will begin to establish permanent changes to the way they work in the next year.”

Service provider clients that planned for resiliency rather than just efficiency have been able to sustain themselves during the pandemic, the report says. Forward-thinking organizations also are considering the needs and wishes of employees, a majority of whom now want to continue working from home at least half the time.

However, companies that have moved their employees to home offices and believe this solved all their problems are mistaken, the report says. This is only the beginning of workplace transformation, and issues have emerged, including Zoom fatigue, loss of the social aspect of business and employees reporting they are working up to 40 percent longer with no correlated increase in productivity. Employers cannot simply rely on workers to resolve these issues, ISG says.

ISG’s Future Workplace framework recognizes three distinct workplaces: physical, digital and human. Service providers are working with enterprises on holistic solutions that encompass all three.

In the post-pandemic era, the physical workplace needs to provide an environment safe from COVID-19 and one that is flexible and adaptable to meet employees’ needs for collaboration and innovation, the report says. It should ensure higher productivity while allowing for a net reduction of spending on physical space through seamless integration with digital work modes.

The digital workplace requires a unified communication and collaboration suite that employees can access from around the world, along with a cloud strategy to keep applications and operations running under all circumstances, ISG says.

Finally, the human workplace is a vision focused on making physical location irrelevant. It puts customer experience at the heart of a company’s people strategy and includes a shift from performance-based service-level agreements to experience-level agreements.

The ISG Provider Lens Future of Work – Services and Solutions – Archetype report examines five different types of clients, or archetypes, that are looking for workplace transformation technologies. The report evaluates the capabilities of 28 workplace transformation providers to deliver services to the five archetypes:

Cost and Change Challengers – These organizations are focused on reducing operational costs by identifying potential savings on internal operations or delivery of services.

Business Model Adaptors – These enterprises are starting to embark on a transformational journey, working to becoming more agile to stay competitive in a changing market.

Experience Evangelists – These clients are technology advocates focused on the employee experience in the post-pandemic world.

Human Workplace Re-imaginators – These organizations have adapted their business models and are in the final stages of perfecting the end-user experience using cutting-edge technologies.

Workplace Transformers – These clients were focused on resiliency rather than efficiency even before the pandemic and made significant investments in digital services and technologies that eased their transition to a remote working model.

The ISG Provider Lens Future of Work – Services and Solutions Archetype report is available to for immediate, one-time purchase on this webpage.