The requirement for social distancing – whether resulting from a blanket government directive, or due to individual preference or need – will create immense pressure on organisations, with many fearing for the survival of the organisation itself in some cases.
But with today’s technology, the challenge of enabling home-working can be met. After all, businesses have been taking advantage of ‘remote working’ for a while now, and which encompasses home-working. It’s the idea of this being a situation imposed on the workforce, rather than one chosen for flexibility, or to meet other requirements, and perhaps the potential timescale involved, that is worrying businesses, and perhaps preventing them from seeing the ways in which to meet the challenge.
It’s at times like these that Office 365’s Microsoft Teams really comes into its own. The ability to chat, instant message, and voice call, ensures that colleagues can keep in contact. There’s no need to cancel meetings – these can move online – and file sharing features mean that nobody is without the documents and data they need, while access to the office tools on which everyone relies, is as if the workforce was in the office.
Using Teams for voice can boost productivity too. Take a look at our website for details here.
Remembering the human element
It’s worth remembering, however, that it isn’t just the technology access moving location. It is your employee moving base, and having to come to terms with a completely new way of working in some cases, and one that can seem strange and isolating. So, any messaging about the technology to support home-working, should perhaps include suggestions to help making the transition for their employees as easy as possible.
Some good home-working tips include:
· Setting aside a specific area in which to work. This helps prevent overspill of work life into home life.
· Creating a routine. It’s important to keep to office timings, and for the employee to not feel under pressure to dip in and out of work out of hours, because work happens to be on the spot.
· Keeping focused on tasks – a short daily Teams meetings can help with this.
· Ensuring regular breaks are taken, and exercise – particularly in the fresh air, and which, with its change of environment, can help prevent the onset of ‘cabin fever’.
· Keeping up socially! Home-working can come as a shock, particularly for those unused to the concept, and who need that ‘good morning’ first thing, the midday chat in the kitchen, the discussion about what everyone’s doing in the evening. So, encourage your customers to put forward the benefits of keeping up the social contact. Yammer is a great channel for this.
We know about home working at Lorica. We’ve been doing it a while. Over 15 years to be exact!
Our suppliers and partners are all geared up for their own staff. Some have switched to 100% home working already and we don’t see any reduction in service.
Most customers have the facility for VPN connectivity. Many of them already use it on a daily basis.
Our management tools can also facilitate remote access, usually for staff that need to use their own equipment at home which you don’t want your company data on, to connect to their day-to-day desktop sitting in the office.
Please raise a support ticket if you required assistance, guidance or suggestions. We do request a little patience and forwarding planning as our only issue is that everyone seems to have left this till the last minute.