Leveraging Cloud Communications for Business Continuity Planning

Leveraging Cloud Communications for Business Continuity Planning

The COVID-19 pandemic tested business continuity plans in ways never before imagined as employees largely shifted from in-office to home. This led to a rapid rise in adoption of cloud-based collaboration and communications applications including video conferencing and messaging to enable distributed worker engagement. Moving forward, successful organizations must go beyond simple point applications to leverage the ability to integrate workflows and collaboration services.

The State of Work Today:

According to Metrigy’s latest unified communications study, published in September of 2021, just 21% of companies have brought all employees back to the office on a full-time basis. The rest provide employees with a choice of work location (24%), require only specific individuals to return to the office based on role (38%) or require remote work (15%). This new hybrid-work reality has profound implications for business continuity planning. Companies can’t just focus on ensuring continuity of operations for their data centers and in-office employees, they must also ensure continuity for remote employees, often across the globe and outside of core operating regions.

The shift to hybrid work is rapidly changing the way companies leverage communications applications. According to Metrigy’s Workplace Collaboration: 2021-22 global study of 476 organizations, 47% now use Unified Communications-as-a-Service (UCaaS) for their calling, meeting, and messaging needs, up from just 19% before the pandemic. What’s more, of the 29% still operating on-premises calling platforms, a quarter plan to shift to UCaaS by the end of 2021, and another 14% are evaluating such a shift. Clearly we have moved into a cloud-first paradigm for enterprise communications.

With the workplace now distributed, and cloud communications the primary way of communicating and collaborating among employees and with partners and customers, business continuity strategies must evolve to ensure continuance of operations in light of a new set of threats including:

  • Weather, fire, and other natural disasters that could impact remote workers as well as offices
  • Growing security threats, including ransomware and nation-state attacks that disrupt business operations
  • Migration of employees as they are no longer tied to their offices and are free to live and work from virtually anywhere.

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