The boss of a Microsoft collaboration partner has described COVID-19 as "the biggest defining moment of our generation" when it comes to working patterns.
Video comms has been in the spotlight this month, with Zoom and Slack among the few tech stocks to defy the wider market crash, and the likes Cisco, Google and Zoom offering free videoconferencing services to encourage people to work from home.
In an interview for CRN's upcoming Meet the Specialists report, Jason Downes, managing director of Modality Systems, argued that the WFH patterns established in the coming months could leave a permanent mark on how firms view remote working.
"I think it will reshape how we all work going forward," he said.
"Imagine, we're a year on from now, and we've gone through this terrible crisis, but that actually we've gone through it successfully. I think the landscape will then be ‘wow, you can really communicate wherever you are in the world far easier than historic ways of thinking'.
"Modality have been around two-thirds remote anyhow, so it's a fairly easy pivot for us. But there are many businesses that are today 100 per cent homeworking, where historically they may only have been 10 per cent. This is a complete flip. It's a dramatic pivot because they did remote as remote - now it's about how you actually operate a business that's totally integrated with not relying on a head office.
"If companies can go through that successfully and the business productivity doesn't suffer because of where people are based - or actually in some ways goes up - then I think it will totally reshape some of the investment decisions people make."
Downes, did however, warn that bandwidth could be a potential stumbling block as more people self-isolate and schools close.
"Now I've suddenly got my Netflix in one room, I've got someone doing a Zoom meeting in another room and then someone else is on social media," he said. "It's going to take a while to scale up to that type of demand.
"II's a shame but we probably haven't invested enough in the UK to be an industrial leader in connectivity," concluded the exec at GCI-owned Modality, which is one of 41 unified comms and comms specialist profiled in CRN Essential's upcoming Meet the Specialists report.
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