The Secret of How to Enable your Remote Workforce

12/02/2019

Terry Hoppitt

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When we talk to a business, we endeavour to understand how we can help them be more productive, create better experiences for clients, employees and associates and importantly increase their market competitive advantage.

Business agility is the core of being able to meet these objectives and there are many studies whose outcomes state better ways of working or business agility leads to increased employee and customer satisfaction, and improved market performance.

For the purpose of this blog, we will focus on Employees and Associates working remotely but being fully accountable, accessible and highly productive. Also worthy of consideration that the employing organisation has the benefit of reduced overheads from this remote work.

What do we consider remote working?

Remote working is when an employee or associate works for a company anywhere except for an office environment. This may be from home, a coffee shop or even an international contractor.

Essentially, a remote worker is someone working from a location other than an office.

What’s driving people to want to work remotely?

It’s important to note that the rising popularity of flexible working arrangements is being driven by technological advancements, the desire to maximise productivity and the need to increase job satisfaction in an evolving workplace.

What’s stopping remote working?

 

Traditionally, office workers have been forced to commute to the workplace every day for three main reasons.

  • Firstly, the company lacks the technical infrastructure to grant their employees secure accessibility from remote locations. This may be because they are online utilising on-premises hosting/file sharing solutions.

  • Secondly, even if the company does have the right infrastructure in place, there is no certainty that a remote worker has the necessary technology in place at home to work remotely. I.e., fast internet, Laptop, etc.

  • Thirdly, a lot of jobs rely on a collaborative work environment. So, even if a remote worker has addressed the first two hurdles, collaboration tools are still needed to ensure that they can work efficiently.

As a consequence of high-speed Internet connections becoming more affordable, computing more portable with laptops and tablets and networking infrastructure more accessible to the consumer, the only thing holding back your employees from working remotely is collaboration technology.

This is where Unified Communications has bridged the gap in remote working.

Unified Communications building remote working environments

Unified Communications (UC) is the integration of real-time communication services such as instant messaging, presence information, telephony (including voice over IP or VoIP), video conferencing, data sharing, call control and speech recognition with non-real-time communication services such as unified messaging (integrated voicemail, e-mail, SMS and fax).

So how does this break down remote working barriers?

Traditionally speaking, the two main ways we communicate in business is through email and phone. Both of these methods are not exactly the most collaborative ways of interacting with people in another location.

With UC, we give employees access to the following areas:

  • Voice/telephony

    • With VoIP solutions readily available for anyone with a decent internet connection, it’s as simple as taking a landline home from the office or redirecting your office phone to your mobile phone. Your staff, clients and vendors would never know that you’re out of the office as your in/outgoing number is the exact same as your office landline.

  • Video

    • When we need to work collaboratively, there is no substitute for face-to-face interaction. With video conferencing technology, you still get the social interaction you need, without being in the same room. Either through your computer or mobile devices camera or a standalone dedicated video conferencing solution, you can work collaboratively as if you were in the same room.

  • Instant message/collaboration tools

    • For intercompany communications, we are seeing a trend towards instant messaging and group chat tools. Why? On average, the typical office worker around the world receives 121 emails a day. So, when you’re working to deadlines or urgently need someone to read something wouldn’t it be easier to utilise a tool that is dedicated to inter-company collaboration?

 

 

  • Presence

    • With these collaboration tools, we can set our status’ to reflect our availability. This is a far easier way of showing if we are working, out of office, busy or in meetings than having to email or call to understand their statues.

  • Email

    • With solutions like Office 365, we can now access our webmail from anywhere and on any device. This eliminates having to come into the office to return emails which hinders efficiency.

  • Document sharing and storage

    • Traditionally, the one way we could access our files with remote workers was via email. However, email has a limit of the files that you can send and receive. With a centralised file sharing and document storage solution, your remote workers can have the same access that your in-office employees have.

With Unified Communications, you can rest assured that your mobile workforce has the ability to work independently from remote locations.

To explore the opportunities to implement a secure Remote Working environment, we welcome you to book your free consultation on Unified Communication; please click the link below:

Contact me 

Terry Hoppitt - Solutions Consultant (B App Sc, Gr Dip Eng, M Tech Mngt, MACS Snr CP)

With a background in Science, Engineering and IT, Terry is a jack-of-all-trades technical Solutions Consultant at Netway Networks. With extensive consulting experience in Australia and abroad, Terry has been working alongside some of the largest companies in the country providing technology solutions to help them achieve their business objectives. Terry is passionate about his consulting work in Hong Kong and Macau which he has been doing since 2001.

Holding qualifications in Applied Science, Technology Management and Engineering, Terry has a strong belief in the value of professionalism and integrity and believe these should be exhibited at all stages of consulting.