globenewswire | December 16, 2022
Remote work is here to stay and employers offering it have a competitive edge when it comes to retaining and recruiting employees, according to a survey from The Harris Poll commissioned by Express Employment Professionals.
Three-quarters of businesses (76%) that have offered remote work since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic say they are continuing to allow their employees to work remotely. The most cited reason is to help attract and retain employees (66%).
Nearly half of employers (49%) say remote work has had a positive impact on their company as a whole, while only 15% say it has had a negative impact, and the remainder say it has had no impact at all.
What’s more, a plurality of employers (46%) say remote work has not impacted employee productivity compared to when they were in the company’s physical workspace. Nearly a quarter of companies (22%) reported their employees became more productive, though one-third (32%) of companies say their employees became less productive with remote work.
The ability to work remotely has become a basic requirement for an employer to stay competitive in many industries, according to Hanif Hemani, an Express franchise owner in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.
“Quite simply the ‘genie is out of the bottle’ and most employers have offered and continue to offer work from home options,” said Hemani. “Remote work isn’t going anywhere and, in fact, employers are using this flexibility as a recruitment strategy.”
Hemani says hybrid work weeks have become the most popular remote work model.
“Most businesses are electing a hybrid model requiring employees to be in the office for a set number of days,” he said. “Typically, I am finding that the 3 consecutive days in office is a popular and good option, as all employees are available for face-to-face meetings on one set day of the week.”
There are some potential drawbacks to remote work.
“Recent insights from some large surveys have warned that remote work can stifle innovation, as employees tend to interact (remotely) with only the same group of people, and cross divisional collaboration and cross pollination of ideas can become less frequent as innovation can often occur from in-person ‘watercooler’ interactions,” said Hemani. “Remote work can also cause a disconnect between employees and their managers which can lead to problems down the road.”
But there are also many benefits to offering remote work.
“Remote work is popular and desired by many employees, and if employees are happier, this should lead to better engagement, which can lead to better productivity,” he said. “If employees are more engaged and more productive then the employer will benefit. In addition, if employees are more satisfied, they will be less likely to leave which will save companies time and money not having to deal with turnover and recruitment.”
When, and if, the country’s labour shortages ease, it remains to be seen if fully remote or hybrid workplace options are as prevalent,”
Express Employment Professionals CEO Bill Stoller.
“As long as productivity doesn’t suffer, offering a remote work option for employees has many benefits and is a popular incentive shaping many companies’ cultures right now,” he added. “While this arrangement may not be feasible for everyone, competition for top talent is still fierce, so it may be worth a try.”
About Bill Stoller
William H. "Bill" Stoller is chairman and chief executive officer of Express Employment International. Founded in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, the international staffing franchisor supports the Express Employment Professionals franchise and related brands. The Express franchise brand is an industry-leading, international staffing company with franchise locations in the U.S., Canada, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand.
About Express Employment Professionals
At Express Employment Professionals, we’re in the business of people. From job seekers to client companies, Express helps people thrive and businesses grow. Our international network of franchises offers localized staffing solutions to the communities they serve across the U.S., Canada, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, employing 586,000 people globally in 2021 and 10 million since its inception. For more information, visit ExpressPros.com/CA.
VIRTUAL DESKTOP TOOLS,SERVER VIRTUALIZATION,SERVER HYPERVISORS
WatchGuard Technologies, Inc. | December 13, 2022
WatchGuard® Technologies, a global leader in unified cybersecurity, have released its Firebox NV5 VPN gateway tabletop appliance and the AP332CR, a new Wi-Fi 6 access point for rugged or outdoor deployments. Built to support MSPs and end users for purpose-driven deployment locations, these two additions to WatchGuard’s powerful lineup of security products and services further extend enterprise-grade protection for customers with distributed operations, while providing a seamless experience wherever they are. Combined with WatchGuard Cloud to deliver one simplified platform for centralized security management, both the NV5 and AP332CR are easy to deploy, configure, and report on through WatchGuard’s Unified Security Platform® framework.
“WatchGuard remains laser-focused on its vision to be the security provider of choice for MSPs, empowering them with security solutions that satisfy a broad range of customer requirements and needs, including remote and distributed environments,” said Ryan Poutre, product manager at WatchGuard Technologies. “We are meeting our promise to set a new standard for security delivery – through our technology, through our team, and through WatchGuard’s thriving partner ecosystem. And together, we’ll keep raising the bar.”
Continuing to expand the breadth and relevance of WatchGuard’s robust security portfolio is a key part of the company’s mission to make enterprise-grade security accessible to all organizations, and further enables the company to bring simplification and scale to every aspect of security consumption, delivery, and management.
Firebox NV5: Edge Connectivity for Branch Locations and Remote Applications
The Firebox NV5 is a powerful solution for distributed, secured VPN traffic and comes with a centralized security and logging solution for administrators. Designed to support remote VPN connections back to a corporate virtual or physical Firebox, the NV5 can route traffic back to the corporate security appliance using WatchGuard Branch Office VPN (BOVPN) capabilities to provide the same level of protection as a device sitting at the corporate office. With enterprise-class SD-WAN capabilities, the NV5 is ideal for deployment in remote applications like kiosks, digital signs, ATMs, and office equipment.
Key Features of the Firebox NV5 include:
Zero-touch deployment – WatchGuard Cloud offers a zero-touch deployment and configuration tool that comes standard with the Firebox NV5. IT teams can utilize zero-touch deployment to eliminate much of the labor involved in setting up a Firebox to work in their network ‒ all without having to leave their office. Local staff simply connects the device to power and the internet, and the NV5 automatically downloads and applies the pre-determined configuration from the corporate network.
Network adaptation with SD-WAN – Businesses require network solutions that adapt to changing conditions by optimizing network performance and costs. Dynamic path selection picks the most appropriate connection based on real-time monitoring of jitter, packet loss, and latency. Utilizing this technology, the Firebox NV5 makes it easy to reduce the use of expensive MPLS or cellular data and improve network resiliency, while maintaining security.
WatchGuard user experience – Many customers utilize remote applications or have small satellite offices that can be difficult and costly to secure and manage. The NV5 utilizes the same platform as other WatchGuard Firebox, Wi-Fi, authentication and endpoint solutions. Whether scheduling firmware upgrades or monitoring access points, technicians have one user experience.
WatchGuard AP332CR: The Ideal Choice for Mid-Density Outdoor/Rugged Environments
Wi-Fi is essential for customers to stay connected for work or as a service for their own customers. The IP67-rated AP332CR delivers superior Wi-Fi 6 performance and WPA3 encrypted security across distributed networks and is ideal for building an easily scalable network in rugged or outdoor deployment conditions. This dual-band access point delivers fast, reliable coverage with a 2x2 radio and four external, omnidirectional antennas offering up to 1.2 Gbps on the 5 GHz band. A single PoE+ port is included to support data rates up to 2.5 Gbps. Utilizing WatchGuard Cloud for deployment and configuration, the AP332CR offers a seamless experience with Wi-Fi 6 performance and WPA3 encryption ‒ making it ideal for building easily scalable networks across school campuses, public hotspots, and smaller manufacturing environments.
About WatchGuard Technologies, Inc.
WatchGuard® Technologies, Inc. is a global leader in unified cybersecurity. Our Unified Security Platform® approach is uniquely designed for managed service providers to deliver world-class security that increases their business scale and velocity while also improving operational efficiency. Trusted by more than 17,000 security resellers and service providers to protect more than 250,000 customers, the company’s award-winning products and services span network security and intelligence, advanced endpoint protection, multi-factor authentication, and secure Wi-Fi. Together, they offer five critical elements of a security platform: comprehensive security, shared knowledge, clarity & control, operational alignment, and automation. The company is headquartered in Seattle, Washington, with offices throughout North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and Latin America.
Verizon | December 09, 2022
Verizon, the leader in Virtualized Radio Access Network (VRAN) innovation, announced today it has extended its network virtualization efforts with the addition of the first Ericsson virtualized cell site (also referred to as Ericsson Cloud RAN), with support from Intel and RedHat providing the processing and cloud-native orchestration functions.
The advancements in Radio Access Network virtualization allows Verizon to rapidly respond to customers’ varied latency and computing needs, and provides greater flexibility and agility in the introduction of new products and services. The move to a cloud-native, virtualized architecture with standardized interfaces in every part of the network leads to greater flexibility, faster delivery of services, greater scalability, and improved cost efficiency in networks. Verizon has been a global leader in virtualizing its network, announcing recently it already has 8,000 cell sites already virtualized in its network with an eye towards virtualizing 20,000 sites.
Virtualizing the far edge of the RAN – the cell sites closest to the customer - is a function of decoupling the hardware and software associated with a cell tower and transitioning the software so that it’s not just stored in the cloud, but is designed for a cloud-native architecture and operation.
Just this week, Verizon and Ericsson published a position paper outlining the optimal technology path for VRAN in order to maximize the performance and efficiency of the network, disaggregate hardware from software, and simplify deployment wherever possible. This technology is built into the first Ericsson virtualized cell site deployed in the Verizon network.
Components of VRAN
Verizon coordinated with many ecosystem partners to welcome Ericsson’s first virtualized cell site.
Ericsson provided its commercial 5G Cloud RAN solution, consisting of a virtualized Central Unit (vCU), a virtualized Distributed Unit (vDU), and radio units. This software-based 5G Cloud RAN solution spans across all of Verizon’s frequency bands, utilizing both FDD and TDD 5G spectrum assets, including Massive MIMO support for C-band and interconnecting previously deployed equipment to enable Ericsson Spectrum Sharing between LTE and NR carriers. The Ericsson Cloud RAN solution offers Verizon efficiency and in network deployment and operational management transformation.
Intel provided its 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processor, Intel vRAN Dedicated Accelerator ACC100 and Intel Ethernet Network Adapter E810 to deliver the processing, acceleration and connectivity requirements.
Red Hat provided Red Hat OpenShift and Red Hat Advanced Cluster Management for Kubernetes to manage their fleet at scale in collaboration with Red Hat Consulting. As part of the solution, Red Hat Advanced Cluster Management delivers cloud-scale manageability by configuring the 5G RAN using a Distributed Unit (DU) profile, which deploys real-time OS kernel optimizations to run vRAN and other cloud-native application workloads from a single console. Red Hat OpenShift also incorporates zero-touch provisioning to enable distributed deployment at scale required to operate a large scale RAN.
Virtualization paves the way for exciting innovation
Verizon has been leading the way in virtualization with its vendor partners for years. Verizon began the journey by virtualizing the core of its network. In the years since, Verizon has been working with partners in lab trials and field tests and has been deploying cloud-based cell sites, building programmability into the network to meet the needs of today’s 5G customers and 5G solutions of tomorrow.
Key 5G use cases focused on providing the best, most efficient network for customers, will heavily rely on the programmability of virtualized networks. Networks must serve IoT devices that do very little networking and stay in place, smartphones with infinite opportunities to use data in a highly mobile environment, and complex solutions like Augmented Reality that require massive computing capabilities on the edge of the network. These various network solutions rely on a correlated variety of resources from the network, which until recently have been defined rigidly and manually. Using orchestration and automation capabilities at scale on virtual infrastructure, Verizon automates network configuration changes and resource scaling dynamically based on demand. This is one of the greatest benefits of virtualizing a network - essentially building programmability into the network.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ) was formed on June 30, 2000 and is one of the world’s leading providers of technology and communications services. Headquartered in New York City and with a presence around the world, Verizon generated revenues of $133.6 billion in 2021. The company offers data, video and voice services and solutions on its award-winning networks and platforms, delivering on customers’ demand for mobility, reliable network connectivity, security and control.