Sunday 16 June 2024
 
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Ahmad Zureiki

Hybrid work model is here to stay: Cisco study

DUBAI, 26 days ago

As the global workforce continues its transition towards a more permanent hybrid model, organisational leaders are strategically balancing investments in physical office setups while empowering employees with flexible work arrangements. This ultimately enhances the productivity of today's hybrid workforce. 
 
As businesses continue to navigate the shift towards hybrid work environments, Cisco's latest predictions highlight the transformative impact of AI-driven collaboration technologies and the evolving challenges of cybersecurity.
 
A significant 83% of organisations acknowledge that collaboration-driven enhancements effectively attract and retain top talent, according to Cisco's own Hybrid Work Study 2024.
 
Permanent hybrid model
Reflecting on its innovations in the past year and the solutions prepping to unveil this year, Cisco emphasises the enduring significance of the hybrid collaboration trends that promote inclusivity, innovation, and flexibility.
 
AI-powered collaboration experiences
The adoption of AI in collaboration is set to revolutionise how we work and collaborate. Today, Cisco's advanced AI audio and video intelligence technologies enable devices to intelligently follow presenters, listen for audio cues, switch between cameras, and optimise meeting views in real-time, creating an immersive virtual experience.
 
Looking ahead, technologies will continue to get even closer to fundamentally eliminating distance in any room type. As organisations map priorities for the year, it is critical to invest in technology that supports the integration of rapidly evolving AI capabilities, ensuring long-term value and fostering inclusivity and equity in collaborative environments.
 
Equitable and inclusive meetings
Meetings where everyone is physically present are no longer the norm, making it critical to provide equitable and inclusive meeting experiences. This fundamental shift in office dynamics has led to a substantial increase in virtual meetings among in-office workers, highlighting a 50% rise in participation compared to other work modes before offices reopened.
 
Despite this shift, only a limited number of conference rooms today are equipped with video conferencing technology, with basic camera and audio solutions falling short in achieving truly inclusive meeting experiences that capture the essence of in-person interactions.
 
To address these challenges, organisations will need to adopt advanced solutions that transcend physical barriers and emulate the richness of face-to-face collaboration, enabling all meeting participants to feel connected and engaged regardless of their location.
 
Workspace transformation
With the ability to work from anywhere, motivating employees to return to corporate offices presents a unique challenge. Organisations are embarking on a journey to reimagine and revitalise workspaces, surpassing the comforts of home to generate excitement and collaboration. 
 
These redesigned spaces prioritise organic interactions, essential for office environments where creativity and teamwork thrive on spontaneous, serendipitous encounters. Designated brainstorming areas and cutting-edge technology will further support co-creation and whiteboarding for both in-person and hybrid participants.
 
Cybersecurity in hybrid work environments 
With organisations navigating the shift towards hybrid work models, cybersecurity must remain top of mind. Recent insights from the Cisco 2024 Cybersecurity Readiness Index reveals that 86% of employees in UAE companies connect to work platforms from unmanaged devices. 
 
The study further indicates that 86% of UAE companies acknowledge that logging in remotely as part of hybrid arrangements has increased the risk of cybersecurity incidents in their organisations to some extent.
 
Cisco emphasises the critical importance of integrating AI-driven cybersecurity measures into collaboration technologies to ensure the security and efficiency of hybrid work environments. By leveraging advanced technologies, Cisco enables organisations to navigate the complexities of hybrid work securely.
 
Cisco’s approach 
Ahmad Zureiki, Director of Collaboration Business, Cisco Middle East and Africa, commented: "The demand for hybrid work collaboration solutions for businesses in the region continues to grow.
 
Organisations are recognising the value of adaptable workspaces and technologies that empower employees to work seamlessly, whether in the office or remotely. Cisco is committed to driving innovation in collaboration through advanced technologies and solutions in AI, ensuring that the future of work is inclusive, secure, and efficient.”
 
Cisco’s collaboration solutions have leveraged AI for years as a powerful tool to facilitate seamless hybrid interactions. It is no doubt that hybrid work models are here to stay. 
 
By offering employees flexibility and choice, this model will continue to not only benefit individuals but also organisations by fostering talent recruitment and retention without geographical constraints.--TradeArabia News Service
 



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