At any level of government from local to national, any department’s or administration’s success requires addressing security, compliance, and reliability needs.
The same trends that have reshaped private sector collaboration over the last several years: remote work, growing use of video conferencing, and AI, are also reshaping collaboration for the public sector. However, Metrigy’s research shows that governments at all levels; local, state, and federal; face unique challenges and requirements.
Like most organizations, the government response to the Covid pandemic was to transition from in-office to remote work. More recently, many US government organizations have moved more aggressively to bring employees back to the office on a part or full-time basis. In February of 2023 the US House of Representatives passed the SHOW UP Act, requiring government agencies to go back to 2019 telework policies, thus ending remote work for much of the US Federal workforce. The Senate has not yet acted on this bill, but is considering its own telework reform bill, also designed to bring government workers back to the office. Back in September of this year, the Biden Administration joined the effort, advising Cabinet officials to push for remote work reduction.
These efforts are driven by a variety of factors including improving interpersonal relationships, making use of existing office space, and bringing dollars back into areas hard hit by the loss of commuters.
Some state governments, including in my home state of Virginia, have joined in on the effort to curtail remote work. Metrigy’s research data shows that nearly 59% of government agency participants in our Workplace Collaboration: 2023-24 study planned to require full-time in-office work in the future, with almost 12% requiring at least part-time in-office work.
The accelerating trend in government to bring employees back to the office has significant implications for communications and collaboration strategies. Networks are likely to be strained as video utilization is at much higher levels than before the pandemic. Employees will demand high quality experiences through the availability of personal and meeting room audio and video devices. And agencies will have to enable capabilities such as digital whiteboards and multiple in-room cameras to ensure that those who are still remote are able to fully participate in meetings and collaborative sessions.
SECURITY AND COMPLIANCE
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