Modern Workplace-as-a-Service and Virtual Collaboration

In our rapidly evolving digital economy, IT must shift from traditional device management and legacy application maintenance to securely managing and supporting the needs of a distributed workforce.

Today, time-to-market is a crucial metric for how effective IT is in delivering a competitive advantage to the business. And it is virtual collaboration technologies that help improve not only time-to-market, but also productivity and business continuity.

Collaboration

In today’s disrupted landscape, people communicating, sharing information and exchanging ideas faster than the competition is a matter of survival. Decisions need to be made faster and with more precision – often without the benefit of face-to-face interaction. Virtual collaboration can make that happen, and it is IT’s responsibility to enable this through the right technologies.

The first consideration is reducing friction. Teams must be able to communicate easily and often so as to increase speed of execution. Considering that teams are likely to be geographically dispersed, it must become easy to quickly come together as a group via chat, voice, video and web conferencing. It must be easy to co-author and share files via the cloud.

The second equally important consideration is security. Teams must be able to communicate and share information in a virtual environment backed by the same (or better) security assurance as an on-premise set-up.

Our MWaaS offering is grounded in technology that enables frictionless, secure virtual collaboration:

Microsoft 365

Office 365 and its newer stable-mate Microsoft 365 are ubiquitous in the business world. M365 was launched as an all-encompassing package that includes Office 365, Windows 10 and Enterprise Mobility + Security, the new offering debuted with two configurations positioned at different segments of the market: Microsoft 365 Business and Microsoft 365 Enterprise.

Today, M365 is geared towards organisations that want a single, secure platform with which to share and collaborate. It includes strong data security features on top of Windows 10 Pro, Office 365 and Microsoft Teams.

Microsoft Teams is a key enabler for virtual collaboration and provides instant messaging, voice and video capability enabling mobile workers to quickly and easily chat, videoconference, share documents and more. Its core functionality includes:

  • Teams and channels: Channels act as virtual conversation boards between teammates.
  • Conversations within channels and teams: Team members can view and add to different conversations in the ‘General’ channel and use an @ function to invite other members to different conversations.
  • A chat function: This can take place between teams, groups, and individuals.
  • Document storage in SharePoint: Every team has a site in SharePoint Online, which contains a default document library folder. All files shared across all conversations are automatically saved to this folder. Permissions and security options can also be customised.
  • Online video calling and screen sharing.
  • Online meetings: The online meetings function can host up to 10,000 users and include anyone outside or inside a business. This feature also includes a scheduling aid, a note-taking app, file uploading, and in-meeting chat messaging.
  • Audioconferencing: With audioconferencing, anyone can join an online meeting via phone. Note this requires additional licensing.

Integration with other Microsoft products means that a contacts list from Outlook can be used to generate meeting invitations, or Microsoft Office can show whether other people are working on the same document.

Conclusion

In a disrupted business environment, there is a strong value proposition for partnering with a managed service provider who can enable virtual collaboration to help you maintain productivity and business continuity, accelerate time-to-market and deliver higher-quality products and customer experiences.

Modern Workplace-as-a-Service (MWaaS), is a managed service that can release IT from the burdens of maintaining legacy communication applications and their infrastructure by migrating them to virtual collaboration technologies. It also shifts the burden of managing the lifecycle of hundreds, even thousands of desktops, laptops and mobile devices to a third party for a simple OpEx cost per user, per month.

CSA’s MWaaS is a timely offering that recognises the challenges of keeping staff productive and maintaining business continuity in a disrupted world. The considerable burden of device management across a distributed workforce is an unwelcome distraction from IT’s real role in helping lead the business into a more competitive position.

CSA’s Modern Workspace-as-a-Service is a mature service that includes device management, ISO 9001 for quality and ISO 27001-certified security and management, support and consultancy around your Microsoft licensing.

Contact us to start a conversation