Let’s face it! 2020 was not the year we were aiming for. Actually, we would like to remove it from the calendar: natural disasters, social conflicts, etc.; but this is not related just to last year, is the “normal”, our “status quo” so why was it a special year? COVID-19, PANDEMIC, LOCKDOWN!
Despite all the issues we had to go along with, we need to save the silver linings as well, as part of this, we were forced to innovate, look for solutions to keep all the business (as much as possible) running, even when the current buildings closed due to the lockdowns and sanitary restrictions. Even when the whole planet “stood still” several services had to evolve in order to succeed and we had to move from our “Tech Buildings” to our “Non-Tech Houses”.
Moving IN to the new (HOME) office: the NEW NORMAL
We used to work in a Tech Building, maybe not the Highest Tech Building in the world but a Tech Building as well, we all the communications systems we need, connectivity, storage, high speed internet, among other commodities we need to fulfill our duties, however due pandemic we had to MOVE IN to our own house, our HOME OFFICE and start working from there. We may say this is not the first time, we used to work sometimes from home, maybe on weekends to complete a project and similar scenarios so this is not a whole new thing for us, however we had to do it not just for a few hours or days, we did it for weeks, months (years? forever?) and right there we realized a lot of us were not prepared to do it: Do I have the proper room, desk, chair? but the right questions is: Do I have the proper technology resources?
Probably that was not the first time we had to take some work from the office to our home so we may have some facilities by now, a comfortable spot if the house with a good internet connectivity and the option to work some hours or days from there, taking the documents we need to work with for that specific time frame. But it is different now, we can not just go back to the office to download/upload a file we need, or take a very important call, work with sensitive information like our company o clients information, sign and share documents. We need to do it from our HOME! In that moment we ask ourselves if we really have the proper conditions: Is my internet connection as secure as should be to send this confidential letter or as fast as I need to keep this web meeting stable with this client located miles away, maybe in a different county or continent? I am sure I have the conditions working from my Tech Building but, may I do it from HOME?
Adapting to Succeed: Technical Barriers, a big challenge
By now, we are (almost) fully aware of the limitations we may have at home and additional infrastructure may be needed to start moving resources from our “Tech Building” to our “Non-Tech House”: Virtual Private Networks, Cloud Services, Digital Signatures, etc. and these needs are fulfilled by the company we are working on, if we are self-employed these services may be acquired by different vendors, this is not a problem at all, the issue is the current technical infrastructure we have at home: is it suitable for my NEW NORMAL? If not, may I improve it?
Working from our original location, the Tech Building, the resources needed are (or should be) always available, however from our new HOME OFFICE this is not granted, not all of us live downtown and the services we need at home may be not available, even if we have the disposition to pay a little more to get them. Right now this is a major roadblock and the providers, most of the ISPs are not going to invest the amount of money needed to deploy all these services to our location to turn the “Non-Tech Houses” into “Tech Houses” as our current “Tech Buildings”, so is time to start thinking out of the box to move towards “Tech Cities”, and Beyond.
Everyday the technology is more affordable, the in-house internet access faster and accessible due different broadbands and little by little we are becoming a Tech City, the 2020 situation just forced us to speed up the process and we need to use it to maintain this continuous improvement, this is our NEW NORMAL from the technical Point-of-View, a year ago the concepts of VPN, Cloud Storage and Cyber Security, among others, were topics related just to IT Support People, nowadays those concepts became part of our vocabulary as end users and we learned all the connectivity is more than social media or entertainment (and maybe some school research)
We may not live in Silicon Valley but our cities, even the remote ones, are becoming more and more “techies” in the daily basis.
Welcome to the (TECHNICAL) NEW NORMAL.