Welcome to Brown’s Bytes! Your weekly insight from Mobliciti’s CTO Andy Brown. Follow #brownsbytes
27th March 2020
So today (Friday 27/03 – events happen so fast at present it’s worth noting this) marks the end of the first full week of the world working remotely where it can.
On the whole, I’ve been amazed at how well IT as a whole has coped with this. It perhaps isn’t perfect for some, but IT, in many companies, has managed to keep the core functions of the business up and running. This is fantastic as a starter for 10 – in effect “just make sure we’re still in business”.
Most organisations have effectively invoked their Business Continuity Plan (BCP) to deliver this and if you think about the core purpose of a BCP from an IT perspective it is there precisely to deliver “just make sure we’re still in business” and it’s worked!
Kudos to all you IT teams out there!!
The big question for many now is shifting to “how long is all this going to go on for?” A general rule of IT during BCP is often to make sure you don’t touch anything until you get back to normal. But the realities will inevitably be that as time passes two things can potentially occur:
- Still in business is not necessarily the same thing as business as usual. The gap will need to be considered.
- At some point, people will look for opportunities from the change to do things differently.
For me, these two items are going to start to intertwine. We’ll be starting to deliver more content on this, but for today I thought it would be useful to start considering point 2.
Right now, the rules of IT have been turned on their head. So, let’s look at some areas that could create opportunities to actually use the changes for benefit.
You know exactly where your users are
This might seem obvious, but for anyone who’s tried to deliver any project to a business will tell you, one of the key challenges you often face is trying to plan for where users will be. This has disappeared overnight – they are all in a known location, they can’t move around and they can’t suddenly change their mind and be somewhere else.
Roaming abroad will have dropped off a cliff
People have (generally) gone home – even those who were abroad have made significant efforts to get home. Your users are in their home country. Roaming is a product of people being outside their home country – right now there isn’t much at all and if anything, it will continue to drop in the short term
Home workers are generally running on their own connectivity
Right now, your business traffic is distributed across each user’s internet connection. Fortunately, this network was designed for people streaming Netflix in 4K and the kids gaming in the evening. During the day it’s generally got plenty of bandwidth to handle anything the enterprise can throw at it. There are opportunities here compared to worrying about flooding your company links/network.
Mobile phones have more backup
This is a curious one – the whole point of a mobile device is that it is used when out and about. By extension, this means users rely on the device more when they are “away from the desk”. Well right now nobody is away from the desk! The “desk” is at home with them and users are now far more likely to have an alternative option to carry on working if the mobile isn’t available.
So, where could this all lead?
Well, this is something we will cover in our content we’ll be putting out over the coming weeks, but at a high level, you can see that combining the above might, counterintuitively, actually be the perfect time to make changes.
Watch out for more in this space!