Remote & Home Working
- Are you looking to adopt homeworking?
- Do you have a smart working environment to work from anywhere at any time?
- Can you answer your work telephone calls on your mobile phone with full phone system functionality to transfer to other colleagues also working from home?
- Do you have VPN connectivity back to your IT infrastructure to access files remotely on your server?
Imagine if your morning commute only took as long as it takes to boot-up your laptop. The office becomes anywhere you can get online, and working hours fit around your home life. How does that make you feel? In control? Liberated? Happy? Everyone in your business could feel like this, every day. These are some of the benefits of working from home.
Powered by super-fast internet, 4G and cloud technology, many small and medium-sized businesses are already living the dream. Working from home and even home-based jobs are fast becoming the norm. Up to half of the UK will be remote workers by 2020. Could your business be next?
Why is working from home a win-win for SME business owners and their people?
People who work from home have more control over the hours they work. Putting in the time when the business needs them but having the flexibility to strike a better work-life balance. With more time to spend with family and explore their interests, it’s no surprise that home working can significantly cut stress levels.
Happy people are productive people. This will ultimately benefit your business. Free from distractions, your team can get more done. In a recent survey, 57 per cent of people said they get more done when they work from home. While employers operating remote working policies felt their business was over 70 per cent more productive. Also, people who went ‘out of office’ and work from home even needed less time off sick.
But to get the most out of flexible working, you can’t simply work off a phone. You’ll need to make some changes to how you run your business. But the surge in how much your people get done can make it worthwhile. Here are our tips and thoughts on remote working tools that can help you get started and make sure you operate effectively.
Communication Is King
Put regular calls in the diary where everyone can get together for any updates and to chat through any immediate issues. Cloud-based teamwork project management tools let people see what they’re responsible for and when it’s due, wherever they are. Instantly updated, they’re also an easy way to let everyone know if a deadline changes or something needs prioritising.
Work Wherever, Together
You don’t need to be sat next to someone to bounce ideas around. This is where chat apps like Microsoft Teams come in. You can send a quick message and get an equally fast response. Helping to make quick decisions and keep everyone included.
Services like Microsoft Teams keep your business conversations in one place and help employees collaborate remotely. This makes it easier for everyone to talk together with group or private chats, with all key decisions on record for all to see.
See Eye To Eye With Video Conferencing
In face-to-face conversations, you can exchange 10,000 nonverbal cues in less than a minute. When you’re negotiating a deal with a customer or discussing a sensitive issue with a colleague, you don’t want to lose these subtleties. This is where video calls come in.
Keep Your Business Open In Unforeseen Circumstances
Flexible working can support SME’s continuing to operate in the event of a critical disaster, major travel disruptions or other unforeseen circumstances. Enabling your people to work from home efficiently will mean minimal disruption to overall productivity.
Attract Top Talent
Unrestricted by location you can cast your net far and wide to find top talent for so-called ‘telecommuting’ jobs.
Flexible working is so attractive, in a recent survey 40 per cent of employees said they’d be willing to take a pay cut to work from home. Happy people are also less likely to leave, which can cut employee turnover in half.
But none of this works without reliable connectivity.
Having happy homeworkers who can perform at their best is only possible if you have internet that you can trust. Whether that’s broadband, wi-fi, 4G, or even a leased line.
So be sure to get a provider you can trust to keep you all connected, wherever you are.
Putting It Together
So put happy homeworkers at the heart of your business. Making the jump to embrace remote working might seem like a lot, but small and medium businesses are in a prime position.
Use it to hire the best people, treat them with respect, work more flexibly, and have the best connectivity to make it all possible. In return, your people will feel they have a stake in your business, so will commit to making it a success.
For more advice or to discover how we can support your team working from home and help your business stay productive, get in touch!