Workplace-as-a-service

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Coronavirus's recent resurgence caused panic and confusion among businesses in the first quarter. All have an advantage and thus Covid19 promoted collaboration among companies “departmentally and unintentionally”. Global growth has created huge changes in our working practices over the past 20 years. The communication of the workers will surely evolve as technology evolves.

Geolance is a commercial workplace-as-a-service (WaaS) company that's changing the way people work

We provide customers with access to their favorite apps when they need them, so they can focus on what matters most. Our WaaS platform saves them time and money while also making it easier for employees to stay connected with their friends or family members. It also helps companies reduce costs through increased productivity by eliminating the need for IT employees or outsourcing operations.

To learn more about how Geolance can help you navigate these issues, contact us today! We'll be happy to answer any questions you have or schedule a consultation so that we can discuss how Geolance can best serve your needs moving forward. 

The WaaS solution in detail

The industry reference for the whole Group, Gartner has introduced its first services to support Workplace-as-a-Service. This service is aimed at companies that are already providing cloud infrastructures for their employees. Especially suitable for large organizations with several lines of business, Gartner's service solution consists of elements that guarantee enough capacity to move quickly into a workplace as a service strategy without extensive IT planning and expense.

WaaS provides five essential capabilities:

1) The Cloud Infrastructure Device Service makes it simple to select, implement and deploy the infrastructure required for your enterprise applications via cloud computing. Your company can choose from virtual desktops, hosted data backup, or file-sharing services.

2) High-Speed Networking ensures fast transport capacity to keep up with the growing amount of data.

3) Application Access will permit your users to access their enterprise applications from anywhere on any device while maintaining a secure and personalized experience that is consistent with current security policies. This will help you accommodate emerging technologies such as mobile devices and tablets.

4) Identity Management Service provides a comprehensive directory of employees, partners, and customers who can be given appropriate levels of access based on their permissions for each application or resource. In addition, it acts as a single point for user provisioning and de-provisioning, helping to manage changes in work status or workforce needs across the company. It also supports account aggregation across multiple directories providing consistency and convenience to the users.

5) Security Services provide a strong defence against cyberthreats, helping you protect your users and data from potentially dangerous malware or ransomware. Also, to provide flexibility in security policies for mobile devices and tablets.

Moreover, the Group has chosen a very exciting pilot program for its new WaaS service. The pilot will be conducted with a group of businesses called the Covid19 Community. These are companies that have relied on Covidien's IT infrastructure either as direct customers or web partners since 1994 when it started developing medical imaging systems at the request of radiologists looking for better ways to manage patient images while working away from hospitals. More than 1,500 organizations use Covidien's workflow device management SAAS solutions today - not only in medicine but also in research, health care administration, and manufacturing.

The Covid19 Business Community can select from a range of technologies including business intelligence and collaboration solutions, and cloud-based email and file-sharing services to design the most flexible and cost-effective workplace: an ideal setting for testing this very exciting new service.

Workplace-as-a-Service combined with SaaS or On-Sites solutions

In case you still think SaaS or also known as Workplace-as-a-Service is a threat to IT, Covid19 proves the opposite. In this new era of technology, they can combine their on-site solutions with WaaS which allows them to move forward and adapt their systems according to the company's need. This ability will surely help them to keep up with current market requirements.

However, having an on-site server is not enough to survive in the Cloud era. Managing those servers takes time and money from your IT department which is why having WaaS as a complete solution might be beneficial for those companies looking for flexibility and agility. As Covid19 has stated: "We need to be agile and we also need to do more with less," says Ken Kelly, Covidien's chief information security officer in charge of technology at the company. "We can't just put in a new data center today and expect it to be online in three years: that's too slow for us."

Also having WaaS will allow them to pick from various technologies rather than focusing on one; they can then install the best solution according to each department's needs such as business intelligence and collaboration systems.

Other benefits derived from WaaS service

1) Reduce your company's expenses: buy only what you use.

2) Get greater control over excessive investment costs by paying for services as you consume them. No need to invest in new infrastructure.

3) Get more flexibility and agility: choose from a wide range of technologies such as business intelligence and collaboration systems.

4) Have access to your company data 24/7 no matter where you are located, which means that your employees can work at any time anywhere.

5) Increase your customer's satisfaction level since they can now have their information stored online securely thanks to the security procedures implemented by Group. 

The pilot program will run for three months starting this November, allowing companies in Covid19 Community to test different elements of WaaS solutions before committing to it entirely.  At the end of this period, they will submit their feedback both positive and negative. They need to know that their customers are 100% satisfied, which is why they will also go through this new experience with Group.  

WaaS allows companies of any size to focus on what they do best: running their business environment and generating profits. As a result, it becomes even more imperative for IT directors and CIOs to make sure the customer – whether an individual or a department – feels supported and cared for. In addition, they need to be agile enough so as not to miss any changes in regulations and compliance requirements from the market nowadays, those both being key factors for growing your company successfully.  

Who uses the WaaS model today

When talking about Workplace-as-a-Service, it is important to mention Salesforce's success. They completely rely on the subscription model which means that they pay monthly fees for all their services. This allows them to scale up or down depending on the number of users, and only pay for what they need at this moment.

For example, if you are a startup company looking to sell your products or services, you probably want an email solution so as not to miss any sales opportunities. However, once you have closed the deal with your customer, you will no longer need this service anymore since you've reached an agreement so why waste money on something that is not needed? Here comes exactly where also WaaS plays its part: you can use the Sales force's system for a short period and then stop the subscription once you feel like it. 

Salesforce is not the only one using this model: there is also Apple and its iTunes Store. They've seen such incredible success since they started in 2003 when people were still used to paying for physical CDs. Their customers were not ready to purchase something intangible so soon but their CEO Steve Jobs knew that he was offering much more than just online music files. Instead of charging per song, he charged per month which meant that users could have unlimited access to any songs they wanted without having to pay too much at once, all while being able to download them right away.

What is a workplace as-a-service

As-a-service is an alternative method to the traditional "on-premise" software. In cloud computing, a service is a resource on the Internet that serves as an app on your computer or another device such as a phone or tablet. Some of these services can be installed right from your browser without having to download anything while some others will require you to have a specific program to access them. Everything works perfectly since all data is accessed online which means that no matter where you are located, you always have access to it at any time.

Server hosting companies like Group started working with this model years ago and their clients were big companies that wanted to have remote access to their key information anytime from anywhere using just one username and password. But what about smaller companies, who could not afford to rent their servers? Server hosting was limited to very few companies until cloud computing came along.

As-a-service is a new funding model for software that allows its users to access certain programs through the Internet instead of purchasing them outright. It's very similar to pay-per-use billing, except it does not require you to purchase the software upfront. Instead, you only buy the number of licenses you need depending on your business needs at this moment in time or which plan provides more features for your company right now. 

One of the key benefits here is being able to switch between different service providers if something goes wrong with one of them without having to worry about the future of your business at this time.

What is it used for

Since most companies are now operating on a software-as-a-service model, they only need devices that allow them to access these programs and files through the cloud. This means that desktop computers or laptops are not necessary anymore since all you'll be using is an Internet browser to access the same information you would usually keep stored on your computer's hard drive.  

There are several reasons why companies would choose this model over any others. One of them is reduced predictable costs since companies will not have to pay upfront fees to purchase servers or other equipment required for their office space as well as smaller monthly fees if there is no large workforce in one office location. Another reason is the immediate access to information. As-a-service provides data security since companies will not need to worry about storing their key information in one place which can be accessed by everyone if their network gets hacked.

What are the drawbacks

One of the most important ones is that switching service providers can result in higher overall costs for some companies. If they plan on using multiple services at once, it would make more sense to stick with one provider rather than pay two different subscriptions instead of just one. Some companies also experience reduced performance and speed whenever uploading files or sharing them between employees becomes a problem because everything has to go through a single server first before reaching its destination (i.e., the Internet connection). The last drawback we'll mention is education. If your employees are not familiar with the concepts of cloud computing, it will take some time for them to get used to using these services. But if you stick with it and show your employees that this model works better overall, they'll soon see how easy it is to access files through a browser instead of having to work on their computers or laptops all day long.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of the WaaS concept

Workplace-as-a-Service (WaaS) provides the workplace for customer employees to access the applications they need, when and where they need them. The benefits of WaaS are numerous; however, there are some disadvantages associated with it.

Disadvantages: It is still an emerging technology that will take time to gain financial credibility among IT professionals  Accessing various applications can be expensive depending on usage (i.e., each application accessed has its subscription fee)  Hardware component support needs to be fully integrated into the system

Advantages: Accessibility - Applications can be accessed anywhere by any device including smartphones, tablets, etc. Scalability - As more people subscribe or acquire your products/services your business grows, you can add more applications to your WaaS model. Improved Employee Productivity - Increase employee productivity by allowing them access to the tools/applications they require on their schedule and on any device they choose anywhere at any time.   Improved Customer Satisfaction - This will allow your customers to access your products/services at any time of the day or night which increases customer satisfaction and retention.

What are the risks

Disintermediation: The risk is that some Cloud Service Providers (CSPs) will start competing with each other for business through aggressive pricing, forcing app developers into wholesale hosting, then endangering all current intermediaries in the stack—ISVs selling distributions of apps, companies selling licenses (software + maintenance), and so forth. In addition, wholesale hosting will cut into the revenue of the manufacturers who have been selling hardware to these cloud providers thus reducing their income stream from app distribution and software maintenance.

Disruption: This can be a real threat to existing organizations as a result of the increased ease of entry into markets that Cloud Computing provides—virtually anyone can provide access to their application or service via a browser on any device. It is easy for new entrants with disruptive business models based upon pricing and other factors that are outside of current industry standards (SaaS) to enter markets previously not open to them. New competitors may also emerge as a result of CSPs offerings 'facilities-based' services such as those offered by Equinix to other CSPs for colocation and interconnection purposes.

Physical Risk: One of the biggest threats to cloud computing is a physical risk (e.g., power outages, natural disasters) because it cannot be easily protected by traditional firewalls and regularly scheduled backups. Some organizations mitigate this by decentralizing their network into smaller "cloudlets", but even these may not protect from a widespread outage that could potentially affect an entire geographical area such as those caused by earthquakes or hurricanes.

Industries most likely to benefit from WaaS

Every industry will be affected by cloud computing in some way or another. However, some industries are more likely to benefit from the technology due to their inherent lack of financial resources when compared to other organizations in different fields. For example, an organization that relies heavily on its network for all business operations would benefit greatly by allowing access via a browser on any device versus having to maintain equipment in-house 24/7. This is true for many companies today but especially true for service providers who may not have the capital required to invest in high-end infrastructure and complex software systems. So these types of businesses can still compete with larger companies who have invested large amounts of money into purchasing enterprise suites by utilizing Cloud Computing but they can do it with a fraction of the cost.

In addition, governments and non-profit organizations who have to be conscious about making capital investments for infrastructure will benefit from WaaS because they can access the benefits of private cloud computing without having to invest large amounts into new hardware or software licensing.

1) Low Upfront Cost/Recurring Costs Only

2) Scalability - As more people subscribe or acquire your products/services your business grows, you can add more applications to your WaaS model.

3) Improved Employee Productivity - Increase team member productivity by allowing them access to the tools/applications they require on their schedule and on any device they choose anywhere at any time.

4) Improved Customer Satisfaction - Customers can access your products/services on their schedule and on any device they choose anywhere at any time.

5) Reduced Operating Expenses - By using a WaaS model you will be able to reduce capital expenses by not having to purchase new hardware and software licenses. This also reduces the amount of money spent on software support personnel for this equipment.

6) Improved Security - Since you will own and control the network, security protocols and methods can be applied and controlled by your IT team that is responsible for controlling all IT operations within your company.

7) New Business Models or Services - You can develop new business or service models due to instant access to applications such as Office 365 which includes Exchange, SharePoint, Lync, Skype (for Business), and Office 2013 without the need to purchase licenses for each of them.

8) Same Technologies and Skills can be used across all company divisions (Manufacturing, Distribution, Sales and Service, etc.) This is because you will continue to utilize the same systems within your WaaS model which eliminates separate IT teams for each division or business unit.

9) Faster Time-to-Market - This allows you to implement new products/services faster by reducing time spent setting up infrastructure. For example, take a look at what Amazon did with its AWS data protection centers around the world, allowing it a very fast time-to-market window that was incredible compared to its competition.

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