The new remote and hybrid work reality has turned the spotlight not only on the capabilities of an organization’s collaboration tools, but also on the devices that staff use to connect to the corporate network. In order to support employees wherever they choose to work, businesses have been coping with a steadily rising demand from its employees for secure, intuitive devices that afford the same level of productivity from within the office walls – if not more.
Microsoft’s Surface device portfolio has become the go-to brand for many organizations, with end-users often citing its intuitive interface, powerful components and high-end finish as some of the features they most like. As Microsoft’s own hardware brand, Surface is naturally first in the market to release products with Windows 11 pre-installed. That’s all well and good, but how does it hold up in the world of hybrid work? Let’s find out.
1. It’s more secure for remote work
Cybercriminals are nothing if not opportunistic. Wherever they see the slightest hint of vulnerability, they will attack without hesitation. When companies were suddenly forced to send their workforce home, outside the safety of the office firewalls, they instantly created attractive targets for cyberattacks.
As the line between work and personal use of a device at home is becoming more blurred, the occurrence of cyberattacks is soaring. The Verizon 2021 Data Breach Investigations Report paints an alarming picture of the cybersecurity landscape today. Eighty-five percent of breaches involved the human element, 36% accounted for phishing incidents (up 11% from last year), and 10% represented ransomware attacks, double the frequency of last year’s tally.
Surface with Windows 11 was built to close a lot of the access points cyber attackers use to breach the system. For example, this device was designed to function without the need for third-party software that staff might install without authorization from their IT department. Whether it’s endpoint management, licenses or drivers, Surface vastly improves security when it is running Windows 11 through its built-in chip-to-cloud security framework.
Of course, unvetted third-party software is not the only cybersecurity threat facing remote workers. Often enough, simple social engineering results in people being tricked into giving away their passwords, a security event that could escalate into a wider threat to the organization. Security protocols help prevent such exposures by using additional measures to authenticate the user and ensure that access to the system is only reserved for authorized staff. The Windows Hello For Business is one such protocol, using biometrics (facial recognition, fingerprints) as a replacement for multi-factor authentication such as a password and secondary security questions. Biometric security protocols are significantly more effective at preventing security breaches than password systems. Not every organization is using this approach, but in my opinion, I foresee that it will become the norm in protecting corporate devices soon enough as biometric scanners come standard on these devices, as they do on the latest Surface lineup.
2. It lets you do what you need to do without worrying about the tech
Often, when talking about what makes the latest release of a piece of technology worth discussing, it’s easy to get lost in a laundry list of technical specs and features. The technology is irrelevant, it’s what it lets your organization do that’s critical. Deploying devices that do what they’re supposed to do, without your staff having to think about the technical bits and pieces in the background, is the goal you should be working towards.
There are lots of new aspects in this latest Surface release that make the user experience a lot more intuitive, seamless and effortless. As your staff are constantly jumping from one video call to the next, having devices that just do what you need them to do without requiring much thought or tech know-how from end-users will become more and more important in the hybrid work environment.
3. It will help with staff retention and recruitment
One effect of the sudden shift to remote work is the fact that people now have a lot more options when it comes to choosing what company they work for. When their choices were limited by geographical proximity, they had far less leverage. But now that they can work for just about any organization around the globe from the comfort of their home, staff retention and recruitment is now on the radar of all leadership teams.
One of the quickest ways to keep your top talent and recruit new talent is to offer them more flexibility in their workday. Central to this concept of flexibility is when and from where they work. According to a recent remote work study, 76% of workers would be more willing to stay with their current employer if they could work flexible hours.
What does flexibility in work hours and location have to do with devices? It’s the devices that prop up this promise of flexibility. Without the tools that allow staff to work securely from anywhere, remote work will introduce more problems than it will solve. The new Surface portfolio is built to meet the demands of this new approach to work.
Care to hear more about what Surface on Windows 11 can do for your organization?