When I joined Riverbed in October 2019, one of my first priorities was to present a clear vision and strategy for the company going into 2020. And after weeks of learning and listening to our customers, partners and employees, the value Riverbed brings to the market and our mission became evident—we exist to help our customers deliver exceptional visibility and performance for any network, any application, to all users, anywhere.
Now as most IT professionals will attest, that’s not an easy thing to do, especially in complex hybrid cloud environments. But that’s where Riverbed has always proven to be most valuable—in the world’s largest, most sophisticated networks—helping IT teams effectively manage diverse and distributed infrastructure, multiple clouds and third-party services.
Fast forward to March 2020 when the global pandemic caused many executives, including myself, to revisit well-planned strategies for the year. For Riverbed, this meant pivoting all our efforts to helping our customers quickly scale work-from-home models with application acceleration and network performance management solutions that kept remote workers productive and networks running and secure. For our customers, it meant accelerating digital initiatives like never before. Projects that would have taken years to execute were completed in weeks or months as IT organizations worked to support 1 billion employees suddenly working from home.
With urgent needs met, our customers are looking ahead to a future that is increasingly hybrid—both from an IT infrastructure and workplace perspective. As a result of the pandemic, 61% of CIOs are fast-tracking digital transformation efforts and 59% of enterprises are accelerating adoption of cloud services and MPLS alternatives. In addition, 74% of companies plan to expand the number of remote workers, creating hybrid workplaces where employees will split their time between the office and working remotely. And regardless of location, these employees will require the very best network and application performance to do their jobs.
In this hybrid network, hybrid workforce environment, the same IT professionals who navigated their organizations through the initial waves of COVID-19 disruption are being called upon again—this time to lead the most critical priorities that have emerged since the crisis. These priorities, which are all IT dependent, include accelerating digitization, enabling work-from-anywhere models, and strengthening operational resilience.
With all eyes on IT leaders and their teams to deliver against these priorities, it’s absolutely vital that they have the tools they need to succeed. First and foremost, they need end-to-end visibility—from the client, to the network, to the application, to the cloud—because it’s impossible to manage what isn’t measured or control what can’t be seen.
Visibility provides insight into where performance and security problems exist, what they are, when they occurred and why. Insight, in turn, informs action. As issues are uncovered, IT teams need to be able to quickly apply network changes, including optimization and acceleration, exactly where it’s needed to improve application performance, bolster security and ensure end-user satisfaction.
With these capabilities in place, IT teams are better equipped to deliver the quality of service, resiliency and innovation their organizations, customers and end users expect. And in doing so, technology leaders will take their rightful seat at the table, alongside other business leaders who are empowered to make strategic decisions and effect change for their organizations. Because never before has the technology strategy and execution of the IT organization been so closely linked to the productivity and performance of organizations as a whole.
These are unprecedented times. But, I believe the value of Riverbed and the mission we set forth prior to the pandemic remains true and ever more relevant to our customers as they enter 2021 and beyond. If you are interested in learning how we help organizations deliver exceptional visibility and performance for any network, any application, to all users, anywhere, you’ll find more than 30 sessions and keynote replays from our Riverbed User Conference here. I hope you take advantage of one or more of these sessions offered to position yourself and your organization for future success. It will be time well spent.
 IDG Research: CIO COVID-19 Impact Study, April 2020
 Flexera 2020 State of the Cloud Report
 Gartner: COVID-19 Bulletin, Executive Pulse, 3 April 2020