Thursday, 20 January 2022 12:00

IT leaders say in Citrix Systems survey that remote work is the future


100 percent of 400 IT and security leaders across North America, Europe and Middle East, and Asia-Pacific have adopted the hybrid work model and have made it a priority for their organisations, according to a Pulse survey conducted by Citrix Systems.

“In 2020, IT was focused on survival amid the great remote work pressure test. In 2021, they overhauled their infrastructure and strategies to accommodate this new model. And in 2022, they will enact flexible technology strategies and workplace policies to deliver what is clearly the future of work,” stresses Citrix Systems CIO Meerah Rajavel.

Business leaders who once dismissed remote work because they didn’t think employees could deliver outside the office now see the benefits it can deliver in terms of employee productivity and experience.

They are calling on IT to implement it, and as revealed by the Citrix Pulse survey, they’re answering.

When asked to rank their top five priorities over the next five years, respondents said:

Enabling distributed collaboration
Ensuring always-on availability
Empowering individual focus
Providing a consistent, consumer-like experience from device to device and location to location
Automating work
Leaping Hurdles

However, the study noted they’ll face challenges in executing. When asked to identify the top obstacles to driving digital transformation, Citrix survey participants cited:

Lack of understanding the needs across the business to effectively prioritise investments (41%)
Cumbersome, complex infrastructure (34%)
Lack of investment in cloud (24%)

Security is also a concern. When asked what they see as the top risks opened by remote and hybrid work, those polled called out:

Ransomware attacks (41%)
Insider threats (18%)
API/software breaches and vulnerabilities (16%)
Phishing and cloud-related attacks (15%)

And, their teams are stretched to the max, with respondents noting:

70% are working more hours
56% are leaving
50% are experiencing decreased productivity
49% are less satisfied with their jobs
24% are disengaged

How do leaders plan to overcome these challenges? Leaders will focus on the following:

Bridging the cybersecurity gap (32%)
Managing the pace of digital acceleration with cybersecurity investment (29%)
Zero Trust Network Access (14%)
Vendor consolidation/simplification (13%)
Security AI and automation (7%)
App/API protection and/or browser isolation for SaaS and web apps (3%)
Acceleration to secure access edge service (2%)

“When it comes to securing a workforce that cycles in and out of the office, ensuring an even playing field for collaboration and supporting employees through what remains a time of unprecedented upheaval, IT can no longer afford to make yesterday’s compromises between distributed collaboration and security,” Rajavel comments.

“Instead, they must implement solutions and strategies that help them balance these seemingly competing priorities and chart a new course that allows them to deliver the future of flexible work,” Rajavel concludes.

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