We know that “location independence” is one of those expressions that doesn’t need a length definition.
When carphones, meant carphones
Initially we used to talk about teleworking (Europe) and telecommuting (US) when we considered the notion of location independence. But this was in the not-so-recent pre-millennium age when we still used fax machines, pagers and when carphones really were attached, to the car.
Today we obviously we regard location independence in a far broader sense as we have become used to ubiquitous mobile technologies that penetrate every aspect of our lives.
The middle zone, or 3rd space
Technology analysts and vendors who want to sell pervasive computing solutions often talk of the ‘middle zone’. Sometimes also called the ‘3rd space’ (or pick any other piece of terminology that suggests a notion of an ‘intermediate region’, you get the idea) — this is the point outside of the office headquarters premises, not quite at the home place of residence, but either on a bus or a train or anywhere else in transit.
Being about to talk about location independence technologies that enable PRODUCTIVE work to be carried out in the middle zone, 3rd space, ‘intermediate region’ is something of a holy grail. This is where the new age knowledge worker today is really at.
Digital nomad from many tribes
But this same knowledge worker comes in more than one basic form and will demand varying levels of processing power, information policy privileges, security, device functionality, connectivity and data analytics power. A location independent professional is sometimes called a “digital nomad” today and may NEVER visit the corporate headquarters of his or her employer. This is a new world for our computing infrastructures to have to keep up with and re-engineeer for.
Our first tasks are:
- realising that this diversity of worker and workflow types exist
- being able to build a technology infrastructure that is both mobile-first and mobile-empowered from the start
- optimizing data, applications and user use scenarios (where possible) to align for a mobile-centric existence
- securing endpoints appropriately in the new mobile universe
- planning for the next stage of embedded, Internet of Things, cloud, social etc. (insert breaking technology trend of your choice)
The bottom line for a mobile win-win
The bottom line here comes down to firms being strategically upfront about using mobile in their businesses to gain competitive advantage — tethering any employee (yes, any employee in any role in any industry) to a desk of any shape or size simply doesn’t work any more.
If a firm evaluates the business outcomes it needs from the mobile solutions it is considering (and is capable of shouldering the management responsibilities for these devices) — and can to safeguard corporate and customer information, then a mobile win-win is on the cards.
This post is sponsored by itcenterconnect.intel.com