Is it time for your company to invest in hybrid working?
Posted 9th June 2021
As the route out of lockdown continues with a target date of 21st June for encouraging people back to the office, the Institute of Work and Facilities Management (IWFM) has released interesting findings that may encourage employers to consider embracing a hybrid or flexible working model. For many businesses, enabling staff to work from home during the pandemic was a sensible knee-jerk reaction to an unanticipated lockdown. Still, the Director of Insight at the IWFM warns against another knee-jerk back to pre-pandemic working practices.
The IWFM’s findings are fascinating; 63% of employees now believe that the office is unnecessary, and a significant majority expect opportunities for hybrid working as furlough and social distancing end. Another notable statistic is that this viewpoint is most prevalent in 18–24-year-olds, with two-thirds of those questions admitting that a lack of flexible working options would send them on a job hunt, and 79% stating that they believe they are equally (if not more) productive when they work from home.
For many business owners, it may now be time to consider whether investing in technology that enables flexible working could be the perfect way of improving staff retention and improving employee health and well-being. If you’ve already embraced remote working for the last 14 months and it’s worked, investing in IT that can promote a hybrid working model could save money on future recruitment and training costs and could reduce the likelihood of staff absences. The technology is available to seamlessly introduce increased flexibility.
Microsoft Office 365
Microsoft Office 365 works by safely storing all your files and documents in the Cloud. This means that your team can access them anywhere from any device so long as they have internet access. Alongside this, the system also provides opportunities for collaboration on projects, for multiple users to work on documents in real-time, and video conferencing and communication through Teams.
As a Microsoft Silver Partner, LP Networks can offer tailored Office 365 bundles on monthly subscriptions, meaning businesses only have to pay for what they use. Buying the software this way also provides the flexibility to increase or decrease your licences as your company evolves and adapts.
But, if the team are working away from the office, how will clients get in touch with them over the phone? VoIP telephony solves that problem. VoIP phone systems work by routing phone calls through the internet to any handset. So, a team member could be working from home but still be able to answer business calls through their mobile phone via a handy app.
The other benefit to VoIP is that it is cheaper than a standard landline and international calls are significantly cheaper.
Remote IT Support
If you do decide to embrace flexible working and encourage your team to work from home for part of the week, you must ensure that they have access to a remote IT Support Desk. With an increased reliance on the Internet and IT, any failures or glitches in the system could immediately impact on staff productivity.
LP Networks offers remote IT Support from as little as £40 per user per month. The package provides access to a remote service desk, manned by experts, and available during office hours, meaning your remote workers can get back up and running in no time.
If you are a company that is currently considering implementing a hybrid working model, the team at LP Networks are happy to advise you on any IT related questions you have. Whether you’re thinking about the most economical way to equip staff with new devices or are concerned about the impact flexible working could have on your cybersecurity, we’re here to help. Give us a call on 0800 970890 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.