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Back to the office!

Despite the recent full lock-down, we see light at the end of this corona tunnel. The rapid development of a Corona vaccine, raises the prospect of ending the lock-down. We also hear it in our conversations, people are looking forward to government easing. One looks forward to going back to the office in 2021! Which, of course, is very striking, and logical at the same time.

Remarkable because companies just kept working even though most of the employees were sitting at home. Of course, not everything went very smoothly, efficiently or completely, but, the day-to-day operations were carried out as usual. This led to little to no congestion, an effective meeting culture, and high adoption of workplace technology. Fine development you might say.

But also logical again to go back to the office, because a kind of social poverty has arisen anyway. Above all, everyone wants to return to the office to finally talk to their colleagues for real again. Work is not just a place to make money; there is a whole social drive behind working. We are and always will be group animals.

Back to the old days?

So what does that mean for IT, and specifically for the MSP, the workplace provider, and other IT services? These services have boomed this year in both new solutions and usage. All at once, companies did have to start working with Teams. So when they didn’t have, rush orders flew in from the provider. And if they did have it, companies especially wanted to be helped how to deal with it. Adoption of resources in the organization and among office staff.

But … there is also a downside to working digitally. As already mentioned, social poverty. But also, for example, digital control is still quite unknown and thus more difficult than thought. Or the guidance people receive from HR. Just think about reviews and ratings. Also, processes are running well, but the really big renewals or innovations are internally slower than planned. Group creativity in an organization is lacking.

So how to proceed? Most workstations were either upgraded or delivered, or the budgets set aside for IT were more than spent. The cake is over. Also remember that we are really in a crisis that will continue for some time anyway. Recovery comes, but is not there within a month. More technology, then, is not the solution.

What can you do as a Service Provider?

So that impacts the IT service provider’s business. Where does your growth lie?


Selling more resources

Trying to sell more workplace technology within the office. Perhaps smarter solutions, such as Microsoft wanting to further support companies in their value through an Office E5 solution rather than an E3. That’s a replacement market for you, more sales, and a little more margin. So that is not where your real future value lies, in our opinion.


Hybrid learning to work

What does it mean if after the first run back to the office, people stay there? Would all the good lessons of working from home be jettisoned? That’s lurking…, managers who still like having their people right back with them. Who assert their control anxiety again.

There also lies one of the challenges of adoption. Of further exploiting the value of IT resources. That is where a future role of the IT provider may lie. How to provide more value by creating a hybrid form of home and office work. So not hybrid Cloud, but hybrid working.


Encouraging innovation

ls said, corporate innovation is there, but at a different pace than before. There is also a role for a Service Provider there. Are you aware of your client’s innovation calendar? In what areas is digitization on the agenda therein? New technology is really going to make a huge difference over time.

How can your service play a role in that? What interlocutor are you already in his innovation agenda and development? We see that the distance between the parts within an organization where innovation is determined and IT is still very large. Make that gap smaller!

Above all, our advice is, think ahead! Sit down with your own people, but especially with your customers. Because that can also be done again when everything opens up. Provide COVID review or impact discussions with them. What have you learned together, and how now moving forward together? In doing so, think beyond your own boundaries.

Because one thing we did learn, without technology, the economy would have been dead. Now the task is to carry on that value. Now it’s up to you!

Want to know more about this? On January 8, 2021, we will host a webinar on this topic. Get insight from our MSP team and your peers in the market on how to take the next step here.

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