Most organizations had to rush to shift to work-from-home models. Now, they’re taking a more strategic approach to the return-to-office process and IT Infrastructure.
For many, there’s no real hurry. Because remote work has been so successful, organizations have the luxury of time to plan the reopening of their offices. Many are taking advantage of this time to rethink their office design. How many people are going to return to the office full-time? How many will remain remote, and how many will adopt a hybrid model?
While offices are still largely empty, organizations are making needed improvements to their IT environment. It’s a great opportunity to elevate the physical IT infrastructure, refresh and upgrade equipment, and improve the audio/visual and collaboration experience.
Key Components Needs to Consider While Redesigning the Post-Pandemic Workplace
These six components are critical for the return to work process:
- Cabling. Many organizations have older Cat 5E cabling that they’ve been living with because replacing it is so disruptive. Now’s the perfect time to rip out that old infrastructure and install Cat 6 cabling to gain greater performance. Some organizations are even moving to fiber-optic cabling, particularly in their core network infrastructure. Organizations that are moving into smaller office space or opening satellite offices need new cabling in those facilities. Still, others need cabling run to new “hotel” office space and cubicles to support a hybrid work model.
- Wi-Fi. Replacing Wi-Fi access points (APs) isn’t as troublesome as running physical cabling, but it’s still a good project to take on while offices remain empty. Networking engineers can upgrade the wireless LAN to the latest Wi-Fi 6 technology and perform heat maps and other tests to ensure adequate coverage and capacity. Many organizations are implementing cloud-based wireless management tools to simplify administration.
- Network. By replacing their core network routers and switches, organizations can gain greater performance, reliability, and scalability. They’ll have more network ports and bandwidth to provide the capacity needed to meet today’s user and application demands. The latest networking gear has the quality of service features that improve the user experience, and a streamlined management interface with automation capabilities.
- Equipment. Many machines and monitors were left on and unattended for months. This is particularly true of shared systems and screens in conference rooms and other common areas. Batteries have swelled and displays have faded, so this equipment will need to be replaced before users return to the office.
- Audio/Visual. A/V equipment is more important than ever with today’s hybrid work models. In addition to replacing failed equipment and faded screens, organizations should look at how they use A/V and collaboration technology. Simplified conference room scheduling systems and “one-touch” A/V solutions can increase productivity and user satisfaction. Organizations are also looking to upgrade image and sound quality for an improved collaboration experience.
- Standards. Organizations commonly have different IT architectures and equipment in their various offices. The refresh process offers an excellent opportunity to establish global standards for structured cabling, conference room setups, and more. This makes support easier and provides a blueprint for extending the IT environment into new facilities.
Develop the Right Return-to-Office Strategies with Rahi
Rahi has been helping organizations worldwide plan and execute their return-to-office strategies. Our team has expertise across the technology range, handling every aspect of the refresh and upgrade process. Our logistics specialists are also able to streamline the procurement process despite supply chain constraints. We have some products on hand and a network of trusted suppliers that enables us to procure materials and most equipment with minimal delays.
If you’re looking to take advantage of the return-to-work process for strategic IT upgrades, we invite you to schedule a meeting with our team for a no-obligation consultation.