For many CIOs, the Covid-19 had a major impact on their organization

Pour beaucoup de DSI, la Covid-19 a eu un impact majeur sur leur organisation Cybersecurity

The IT sector has been severely tested during this pandemic, but has also been able to adapt to exceptional circumstances and learn from this crisis, according to a Cisco report on the impact of the health crisis for CIOs.

Out of a panel of 300 CIOs worldwide, 78% of them believe that the pandemic has had a “serious or major” impact on their organization. Certain factors were sources of enormous stress for IT managers, who had to manage the transfer of teams remotely. Among the most cited concerns, the report reports on VPN bandwidth (54%), declining productivity (55%), technical breakdowns (44%) and security (56%).

Against stress, network technologies have stood out. And 72% of respondents consider that these technologies have made it possible to “reduce the stress of IT teams”, reports Cisco. Among the most popular solutions, the popularity of collaboration tools has skyrocketed, supported in particular by holding regular team meetings by video (86%) and managing unified communication tools.

For example, virtual exchanges have been omnipresent in the internal organization of Cisco. “At Cisco, we have organized many virtual cafes, happy hours, group fitness sessions and much more. And while this does not replace in-person communications, I have found that I speak more directly to my direct reports when we are working from home. There have certainly been positive points, because we have been creative in staying in touch, ”explains Jacqueline Guichelaar, Cisco CIO.

A new normal is emerging

The transition to remote working has been successful overall, and this unprecedented situation has enabled CIOs to assert their role within organizations. According to the Cisco survey, 88% of CIOs believe that their role has expanded and has a greater impact in their business and industry.

“The CIOs of all types of organizations and their teams have kept almost the whole world in activity during confinement, like the health or education sector,” says Jacqueline Guichelaar.

“I know that at Cisco, we are already used to working remotely, and we have the network expertise to do it on a large scale. But going from 20,000 to 140,000 remote workers in 10 days was something we had never done, and it took a lot of coordination and teamwork throughout the company. We had teams that worked around the clock and did everything necessary for Cisco employees to quickly start working from home. So it was great to interact with other CIOs, measure their stress levels and see where we could help them. Many have done the same for me, ”she says.

The pillars of digital transformation

How are CIOs learning from the crisis? “Today, CIOs know how important it is to put in place a long-term strategy for procedures, resources and schedules to be ready for future challenges,” said Cisco.

“Recent events have only confirmed the main pillars of digital transformation: rebuild your infrastructure, reimagine your applications, secure your data and empower your teams, like never before”, analyzes Jacqueline Guichelaar.

“Many of us are already adjusting our future plans accordingly, in order to be better prepared for the next unexpected event. For most of us, that means additional investments will have to be made, ”she continues. “There will no doubt be other challenges to overcome. But I believe that the technologies will only improve and that continuous transformation is in fact the new standard. “


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