Verizon Business: Five trends for the post COVID-19 workplace of the future

Verizon Business President Sowmyanarayan Sampath sees five important trends for enterprise customers as they emerge from the coronavirus pandemic. (Pixabay)

Verizon Business President Sowmyanarayan Sampath sees some emerging trends for enterprises as the industry works its way through the coronavirus pandemic.

Some of those trends, such as zero trust security, aren't necessarily new, but Sampath said he sees five emerging trends for the workplace of the future.

"When I talk to enterprise CIOs, there are five things that have resonated quite well," Sampath said. "The first one is agile, SDN-based networks, which allow for scaling when you want to double or triple traffic."

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Software-defined networking (SDN) would enable large enterprises with adept IT staffs to self-provision capacity on their networks. It would also include multi-access connectivity, such as broadband, Ethernet, wireless and special access, to help scale end-based architectures.

"We've seen the difference," Sampath said, of Verizon Business enterprise customers that have SDN-based networks in place. "They're in much better shape (during the coronavirus pandemic) because they can burst up quickly whereas some of the older legacy customers take a lot more work."

The second trend for workplace of the future is having enough infrastructure in place for enterprises to capture and use cloud-based applications. Sampath said there needs to be an acceleration in the use of cloud-ready apps.

"Many of them have migrated over to the cloud over the last three or four years, but this is the test," Sampath said. "How are people accessing the cloud from multiple locations?"

RELATED: Verizon: U.S. network usage starts to normalize as subscribers settle into new routines

The third pillar is zero trust security. According to research last week by Nokia Deepfield, distributed denial of service (DDoS) traffic was up by more than 40% during the coronavirus pandemic, which could be due to a significant rise in gaming-related DDoS attacks.

Enterprises need to move beyond the castle and moat approach for security, Sampath said, to zero trust security. With more people working from home due to COVID-19, networks are shared among roommates and family members. For endpoint protection, Sampath said Verizon Business has been scaling up its software-defined perimeter service to enable zero trust security.

Software Defined Perimeter (SDP) technology provides security at the application layer instead of using traditional network-based access controls for endpoint protection as employees work from home

RELATED: RELATED: Verizon Business throws a zero trust lasso around its private IP networks

"Zero trust, which is trust no one, checks everyone across the entire infrastructure," Sampath said. "It's a big change in how we think about security and an area where I'm spending a lot of my time. Zero trust basically comes down to the definition of a perimeter and how it changes.

"The fourth big change I expect is application level performance monitoring at the end user level. CIOs have never designed for this, but its increasingly becoming a big thing."

Application performance monitoring allows enterprises to know the uptime of a specific application, as well as how it's being accessed from a Wi-Fi router in a home versus at the edge of a broadband network. It also enables application level service level agreements (SLAs.)

"The network should be application aware first, and actually do something with that information," Sampath said. "It's going to be important. "The last one is good old supply chain management. A lot of the supply chain is broken right now with multiple vendors and multiple distribution channels. They need to have supply chain flexibility.

"These are five big things that I think are going to change once everyone starts to come back to work."

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