Nowadays, modern workspace concepts serve as an effective tool to face the challenges of the future and to be viable as a successful business. The workspace is currently subject to a significant transformation and moves more and more away from being restricted to a physical location. The workspace of the future has to meet the requirements with regards to flexibility, mobility and constant availability. Against this background, Workspace-as-a-Service acts as an important component of a modern and stationary independent work environment. WaaS refers to location independent access to data and applications, stored in a virtual office. Here users can use the device of their choice and are no longer dependent on clearly defined hardware components. Workspace-as-a-Service makes an entire and virtual desktop environment available, which allows people to work as in a conventional office. Irrespective of where they are based, staff have access to all data, applications and information via a cloud service.
What is a Workspace-as-a-Service?
With Workspace-as-a-Service, it is is all about device independent access to resources stored on the internet. At the same time, the system has to be so secure and shielded, so that only people with the relevant authorisation can gain access. With access, it is not only about who can process stored resources, but also who is authorised to retrieve them. Cloud-based data management will be increasingly in demand in future. Instead of individual files or programmes, nowadays entire work environments have already been moved to the cloud. Thanks to easy to implement apps, the virtual desktop can already be used by companies in various sectors. The big advantage of internet-based applications is that initially nothing changes for the companies‘ employees. As long as an internet connection exists, applications are available at any time and everywhere.
Flexibility & Efficiency Gain of a Workspace-as-a-Service
The advantages of cloud based applications have just been touched on. Irrespective if employees are in the office, at home on a tablet or travelling using their smartphone, as soon as they are logged on, they have access to the virtual desktop at any time or from anywhere. Up to date files and applications are availabe on every device after the Single Sign-On. With regards to choice of end devices, this offers the greatest flexibility for both employers as well as employees.
Another advantage is the reduction of pressure on the in-house IT department. Time and cost intensive processes such as licence management or software deployment can be made available in a simplified way through the cloud, and create a significantly reduced workload for companies‘ IT administration. The switch to cloud-based data management also ensures that companies can take more advantage of their data. New workspaces for more staff can be set-up quickly with the help of such a service, for example oneclick. Central data and software provision are seamlessly available and up-to-date on every workspace. This should also noticeably release finances and capacities of companies, which may be of particular interest to start-up companies. Motivated and technically competent staff of a younger generation demand a different, mobile life style. Free space, individual responsibility and a unique understanding of work-life-balance demand new ways from companies to gain the best employees in these times of skills shortages. Cloud-based data management and a centrally administered software, which can always and at any time be accessed via the internet, enable even more flexible workspace concept. It also allows the optimisation of processes and an increase in productivity.
Security Concepts for more Trust in Data Security
Currently there are still disadvantages relating to data security. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which comes into force in May 2018, has created new rules across Europe with regards to the handling and processing of personal data. Not all providers of Workspace-as-a-Service work according to the high standards, which can be offered by in-house servers and a well established in-house IT department. When choosing a provider, it is therefore important to look out for a mult-level and comprehensive security concept, according to German security regulation.
Current Figures: Things are slowly progressing
On behalf of Trimph-Adler (TA), IDC carried out the survey “Future Business World 2025 – How digitalisation changes our work environment “: More than 700 medium sized businesses from the D-A-CH-region (Germany-Austria-Switzerland) were interviewed with regards to digitalisation trends. 78% of those surveyed indicated, that they consider the handling of information crucial with regards to their future competitiveness. Already 22% of companies offer virtual workspaces, which come from the public cloud. 44% of the companies operate workspaces from the private cloud. But 27% of the surveyed businesses have not yet dealt with this topic or its practical implementation. Therefore, Workspace-as-a-Service is still far from being a widespread phenomenon.
Workspace-as-a-Service: Forecast for the Future
In future, 54% of the employees from the surveyed companies see themselves in a virtual workspace. This trend can be easily justified: The implementation does not seem to be too difficult for companies as the switch to a Workspace-as-a-Service is cost efficient and can lead to enormous cost savings with the company’s IT. 35% of the interviewees indicated that they already work at home with technically higher quality devices than those available from their non-cloud based employers. The companies‘ switch to modern work devices is therefore a prerequisite for the path into the future.
The signs of the times are pointing towards change. Without a basic knowledge in cloud computing, it will become difficult for companies to meet the demands of the future and provide a modern, as well as attractive, workspace for their employees. However, until cloud-based data and software can really be used widespread, companies‘ trust in data security has to improve. As things currently stand, compliance with relevant legal regulations across countries‘ borders may be one of the big challenges of cloud computing.
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