Tomorrow’s world: how to make sense of the interconnected enterprise

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A few years back, you would have blinked in disbelief at the idea that any multinational corporation could boast that each of its employees banked $2.3m of revenue, but that amount is what, on average, every single one of Netflix’s workers brings to the company.

It’s a far cry from when factories needed to employ thousands of people to maintain their turnover. But even here, we have seen a process of rationalisation. General Motors, for example, has reduced its workforce from 700,000 to 164,000 in just 20 years.

This change in employment practice is highlighted in a report, Building Tomorrows Interconnected Enterprise, from applied futurist Tom Cheesewright, who examined how the modern enterprise was shaping up and preparing to meet various challenges. Clearly, the onset of COVID-19 has had a major effect, but there were forces transforming the workspace before the pandemic.

The modern corporation is less hierarchical, with greater autonomy given to employees. It’s one of the reasons why revenue per employee has rocketed. Netflix may be an extreme case, but nearly all companies are seeing such a shift.

We all work in a world where speed is of the essence. Information moves around the globe at high pace and businesses have less time to make decisions. It’s important, therefore, that employees have the requisite information to hand in a timely fashion. 

To do this, there’s been radical alteration in working practices. Cheesewright’s report demonstrates how far this has gone. Today’s corporations are complex, interconnected structures based around a web of interactions. With companies increasingly dependent on software implementation, the report highlights the importance of business automation as the key factor in accelerating decision-making and reveals how it can help organisations flourish.

This had entailed a shift away from departments running their own data siloes into a more distributed, software-defined set-up. Much of this repositioning has been driven by the move to Cloud computing – the ultimate in software-defined technology.

There are some immediate problems. Many organisations have more than one Cloud provider, which throws up a range of issues: pricing structures, services, and command lines.  It’s here that we can see some of the weaknesses of a distributed infrastructure – there’s no hierarchy of command, which makes management of the systems harder to handle. 

To complicate matters still further, the modern enterprise relies on an interconnected ecosystem of partners, suppliers, vendors and consultants, all with their own IT systems. How can these diverse bodies be incorporated into a single infrastructure? And while Cloud has become the de facto technology for many organisations, there are concerns about the way it’s being deployed. How, for example, will it be managed? How will it integrate with other systems? All of these are challenges facing any CIO tasked with managing such a transformation.

How can a company control all aspects of an integrated system and how easy is it to handle multiple providers? It’s one thing to talk about a seamless, interconnected system, but it’s another thing to manage it.

There are few platforms that can cope with such demands, but one that can is Console Connect from PCCW Global. It will enable CIOs to provision connections between all the elements of a global ecosystem – these could include carrier and Cloud networks, datacentre-based private networks, IoT systems and SaaS products.

In an increasingly global world, Console Connect is accessible from more than 400 datacentres in over 50 countries and is integrated with all the major Cloud providers. It’s a tool that will be hugely beneficial to CIOs, offering them a way to handle security concerns, integrate multiple Cloud providers and handle legacy systems too. 

To highlight the security aspect, companies can configure private networks within an overall infrastructure. This will ensure that CISOs retain control over who can access the network by setting their own policies. By using private Clouds, businesses will be able to improve latency and, as we have already seen, the need for easily accessible and rapid information is essential to the modern enterprise.

But the ultimate connectivity is to a wider ecosystem of partner, suppliers, employees and contractors, improving decision-making throughout an organisation. The Cheesewright report on the current state of enterprises is a blueprint to how to plan the future. There are many challenges ahead, but the CIO that has Console Connect at their fingertips is well ahead of the game in an increasingly complex world.

Copyright © 2021 IDG Communications, Inc.