Turning Points

The Private Cloud

CBC/Radio-Canada is still acting on its 2015 strategic plan Everyone, Every way, and will soon begin looking beyond 2015. Technology and the Technology Strategy Board’s (TSB) vision are major drivers on our road to the future.

Simplification and ever easier access to technologies will guide our efforts to review several of our production processes, as well as our methods, communication tools, and how we collaborate day to day. Much more information will be readily available, and our tools will keep getting easier to use.

With this in mind, the TSB chose “Empower workers” as the theme for its second Looking Ahead session. What exactly would constitute a stimulating, high-performance work environment that fully empowers our employees and provides access to the content they need on the job every day? Thankfully, when we went Google, we also got a suite of integrated applications to simplify our work and communications. In addition to email, Google delivers several communications tools, storage space for our documents, and a suite of office applications that are fully integrated and available across all platforms via the Cloud.

But the transition’s about so much more than office software. A number of CBC and Radio-Canada projects are pushing us to transform our production environment into a tapeless, fully electronic one. We recently began using AVID’s InterPlay Central technology, and viewing program-specific content has never been easier – on computer, tablet, or even smartphone.

Our new crop of Gen Y employees, who grew up digital, are drawn to this type of high-performance, technologically accessible organization. They’re our workforce of tomorrow, and they operate in digital realms of communications, collaboration, and empowerment. The digital way of life is one of their defining characteristics. They’re more empowered, and they tend to make choices that secure their freedom to act in their work environment. During the TSB’s one-day strategic thinking session, we got the opportunity to chat with a representative from gaming world leader Ubisoft about the challenges and, even more so, the creative potential of this new generation of collaborative workers who are making the world their playground. These youngsters’ current realities at Ubisoft provide a sneak peek at the transformation we’re going to witness with this latest generation of talents. We have a high-performance digital environment to build, and we must consider the relationship we have with our employees.

Mobility and wi-fi access to content are important factors in this freedom to act that we must give our employees. Work environments will be virtual spaces that can accompany them as they go about their business. Cloud applications and virtualized content are two other big factors in this brand of freedom. Secured content safely stored on the web is now accessible from any device, whatever the operating system.

Using visual communications tools like hangouts and instant messaging over and above the traditional methods will result in more spontaneous interaction with co-workers, clients and the organization. The office is going virtual and dropping the physical limitations. Communication happens in the street, on public transportation, at home, or anywhere on the planet. Many of us are now at work without being physically at work. This fascinating shift will bring sweeping changes to our work environment – it will be a study in worker empowerment.

If information is power to some extent, then the explosion of easy access to it is sure to change our structures and place much more power in the hands of our born-digital employees and all converts. They’ll have greater power to act, and also effect change. Technology will be the catalyst, and that’s great news for CBC/Radio-Canada. The TSB will be there every step of the way to support the organization as it evolves.

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