Two Important Things to Consider When Moving to Full-Time Remote Working
Although for many companies, the concept of working remotely has been forced on them, some have taken to it like a duck to water and have elected to work from home from now on. At first glance, it can seem like a win-win situation for both the business and employees, but that might not be the case over the long term.
For the business, there is the initial attraction of not having the overheads that a rented office would entail, and for the employee, there will be no more commute, less wear and tear on their vehicle, and no effort or expense getting ready for the office each morning. However, once the benefits of these changes are considered normal, there are further issues to consider.
#1 Interaction and creativity
Many businesses create great products or come up with game-changing ideas through face-to-face interaction. Once this element is gone, creativity can often be stifled, which has negative repercussions for the business. So far, while working remotely, employees will have been contributing to projects born before the pandemic and when these have come to an end or have been delivered, the business involved could hit a figurative wall.
Therefore, consideration needs to be given to creating a virtual equivalent of the office brainstorm. While such software is not difficult to implement, it will take a while for teams to get used to the new way of doing things and expressing themselves in the same way they would have previously. So, as a business is reaching the end of their pre-COVID order book, they would do well to instigate this process, so that the team is up to speed by the time they are needed to come up with more ideas.
#2 Software choices
The move to working remotely will have meant the need to implement certain products that make home working possible. Among these will be the software that teams use to communicate with each other and share information. In a situation like this, an easy choice would be to use Microsoft Teams, as the chances are the company already uses a range of Microsoft products. The other alternative would be to use Slack, which is the current market leader.
However, as these are both hosted on their own servers, they may not offer the right level of control or flexibility a business would like in the long term. An alternative open source messaging service may be a better option as this is hosted on your company’s servers and can be developed to meet specific needs, rather than the one-size-fits-all approach of the other services.
While working remotely has its benefits, there are other things to take into account if choosing to discard the office altogether. The benefits of face-to-face interactions need to be created virtually if the same level of creativity is to be achieved, and software choices need to be assessed carefully to make sure they will be as useful in the future as they are currently.
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