What Remote Work Means for Data Centers 

While the world continues to navigate the pandemic, remote work continues to be a hot topic among enterprises. Is remote here to stay?

Nearly all areas of the IT service provider sector are enjoying substantial and unabated growth, and one unexpected driver has been the COVID-19 pandemic. A large portion of the workforce transitioned to remote work at the pandemic’s onset in early 2020, and critical teams such as IT and cybersecurity were at the forefront of tackling the significant challenges that arose.

There are as many results from this work-from-home experiment as there are organizations and employees. As such, work policies moving forward range from fully in-office to fully remote models, with most organizations opting for a hybrid between the two.

Is Remote Work Here To Stay?

The following question, asked of C-level executives in a McKinsey study, highlights this change:

What level of remote working does your organization have?

Pre-Pandemic response:

  • 99% had over 80% in an office
  • 1% had 51-80% in an office

Post-Pandemic response:

  • 10% have over 80% in an office
  • 40% have 51-80% in an office
  • 40% have 21-50% in an office
  • 7% have 20% or fewer in an office
  • 3% have nobody in an office and are fully remote

In the same study, 58% report that there has been improved individual productivity, with only 11% reporting a decline. 49% have determined that team productivity has improved, with only 10% seeing a decline.

Remote Work and Hybrid Remote Work Models

Some organizations have begun implementing hybrid remote work models while others have delayed their return to the office. Many employees, particularly previous commuters, enjoy the convenience of working from home and will continue to prefer an at-home or hybrid model over in-office for the foreseeable future. Thomas Malone, the founding director of the Center for Collective Intelligence at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, told the Washington Post, “If companies make employees who can do their jobs at home come into the office, it will be harder for them to hire, and other companies will benefit.”

Remote Work and Data Centers

Scaling the remote work model during the pandemic placed new demands on IT infrastructure and security, including services provided by colocation data centers. The need for additional endpoints, edge nodes, fiber connections, cybersecurity tools, cloud options, mobile technology, and SaaS solutions will continue to grow as organizations allow employees to work where it makes the most sense. Colocation data centers will continue to play a central role in this digital transformation, offering flexible inventory, hyperscale colocation, remote hands services, and security.

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Will Your Data Center Support Growth?Scaling a data center is one of the most challenging tasks an organization can face.

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