Five predictions for cloud collaboration in 2013
As we move into 2013, we see shifts in the conversation around cloud collaboration. I've outlined a few thoughts on what we can expect soon, over the next few years. In 2013, we'll see the cloud conversation shift to flexibility and agility as primary drivers of adoption.
Businesses will have to provide an environment in which their employees are connected in ways they have never been connected before. As more companies understand the problems that arise in the collection of big data and the number of employees who work outside the office increases, cloud adoption will grow exponentially.
Gartner data shows that 71 per cent of businesses adopted Software as a Service (SaaS) within the past three years while a recent Forrester survey shows an increasing number of businesses are focusing on "business agility" as a reason to deploy a SaaS solution.
In order to compete effectively in the future, businesses will have to provide an environment in which their employees are connected in ways they have never been connected before - connecting employees to customers, partners, and suppliers real time, anytime, anywhere, and providing context to these collaborative sessions.
This can only be accomplished through leveraging an increasing set of collaborative technology, and exposing the most relevant data across the traditional mediums of voice, video, and chat.
As cloud collaboration moves beyond early adopters in 2013, hybrid models will proliferate and customers will increasingly demand a seamless, uncompromising user experience between the cloud and the customer premises.
In 2013, cloud delivery of video will enable a cost paradigm shift leading to acceleration of adoption of pervasive, any-to-any video conferencing.
Deploying these advancements in the cloud will allow us to make any-to-any video connections between mobile, personal and room-based systems. Historically three key factors prevented widespread adoption of video: high infrastructure and endpoint costs, consistent quality of experience and lack of interoperability between systems.
In 2013 we will see advances across all three of these challenges, particularly in software capabilities that will dramatically lower infrastructure and endpoint costs. Deploying these advancements in the cloud will allow us to make any-to-any video connections between mobile, personal and room-based systems while optimally allocating resources depending on the endpoint, resulting in significantly lower costs and higher quality. This will enable businesses of all sizes to take advantage of the power of video collaboration.
In the coming years, the "Internet of Everything" will connect people and "things", allowing for contextual collaboration, enabling new work styles, and empowering people to accomplish the extraordinary.
These experiences will be enabled by the "Internet of Everything", resulting in a massive amount of data that provides us context and information in everything we do. Knowledge workers using enterprise software to instant message, meet via voice and video, and share content with co-workers and clients may also be using social tools, such as Facebook and Twitter, that are not fully integrated into the enterprise.
2013 will be the year of the chief information officer (CIO). During 2012 we saw the role and demands on IT grow exponentially, and as we enter 2013 we will see this accelerate. The rise of the cloud and the migration from the desktop (PC) to the workspace (multiple devices and platforms) will start to become central to business strategy and operational success.
Successful CIOs will react to this challenge as they are less measured by network uptime, and increasingly concerned with service availability, the impact they make on the business and how they can drive efficient business processes, innovation and business transformation. The CIO's influence and image will transform through the year and we will start to see 'celebrity' CIOs emerge. In turn they will become more influential, command greater recognition and wielding greater power.
Tatchapol Poshyanonda is managing director of Cisco in Thailand and Indochina.