Feature Story

Cisco named one of the best companies for flexibility—here’s why

by Stephanie Chan

Cisco named one of the best companies for flexibility—here’s why

Cognitive Collaboration tools help employees maintain work-life balance.

There are plenty of reasons why a good work-life balance is essential to a happier life, including better health and less burnout. But the OECD Better Life Index finds that Americans have some of the lowest work-life balance in the world, and one LinkedIn Learning survey reports that 49 percent of workers feel stressed and overwhelmed by their workload. The New York Times writes that long hours have become the norm in many jobs. If all these reports and studies on overworked and stressed out employees is stressing you out, take heart.  Employers are now working to ease the burden, offering more flexibility.

This is a trend occurring in many businesses, including those not usually considered flexible, like finance and food service. The Society of Human Resource Management states that 68 percent of employers allow workers to telecommute as needed—this is up from 54 percent in 2014.

Technology is a crucial solution that helps employees work when and where they need. This is certainly true for a company like Cisco. Indeed names Cisco as one of the top five companies for better work-life balance, stating that the commonality in all top companies is their flexibility.

Cisco encourages remote working with the company’s suite of collaboration products, including Webex and Webex Teams. Using email may actually slow down your work. Webex Teams, a group messaging and video chat solution, allows work to get done faster with real-time chats. Cisco’s video meetings work to replicate the face-to-face experience. Webex is optimized to share rich video and media content in high resolution, without lag.

Artificial intelligence will take collaboration tools to the next level. A Morar HPI study found that 95 percent of workers believe AI will improve work tasks, making meetings much more productive and allowing participants to jump right in.

Cisco recently announced a ton of new features at the Enterprise Connect conference, showcasing that intelligence and context will be included in every one of Cisco’s collaboration products. These include People Insights, a way for participants to learn more about other people in the meeting. Another is Facial Recognition, an AI-based technology that can identify all individuals in the meeting. Webex Assistant will also help participants start and control meetings with voice commands.

Cisco plans to incorporate AI and machine learning throughout calling, messaging, meetings, devices, and call center—so look forward to even better collaboration in the near future.

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