Has the Way We Work Changed Forever?

The office environment looks very different post COVID-19 lockdown, a   combination of home and business premise is impacting how companies manage their people and their IT support. Sundata explains how.

As companies consider returning staff to the office post COVID-19 lockdown, many are realising that the work environment has changed, probably forever.  With the need to work from home, a hybrid office / home environment has been created with a range of pros and cons that presents some challenges around your IT infrastructure:

  • More meetings are held online. Which means people who are remote can get together more often, but connectivity must perform and be reliable, and the video conferencing software used, easy to access and secure.
  • Less time is spent commuting and travel costs are reduced, but we need to ensure that we make time for social interaction and team building.  This has been a hidden aspect of the turn to ‘work at home’
  • Managing overall scheduling and task allocation can be more complex with a distributed workforce.
  • And often there is a mix of technology and resources in home offices that may not fit company standards and pose a potential data security risk.

 

So how can the hybrid office work more efficiently and what can Sundata do to help?

  • Potentially transition software to the Cloud with solutions like Office 365 or your business apps ‘as a service’, but ensure you have a data security strategy in place
  • Adopt a Hybrid Cloud storage solution that provides you with strong, secure data storage while still being cost-effective and easy to manage across platforms – such as NetApp’s OnTap
  • Consider replicating the office environment into the home working environment, using a desktop-as-a-service solution or increased mobility functions.
  • Ensure your IT support is available 24/7 by entering into a Managed Services contract, where many support tasks can be managed remotely to support everyone in the business, no matter their location.

 

For staff,

  • Encourage staff to plan for breaks..  The home office does not trigger regular breaks that you find in normal office interactions
    • When on group calls, allow multiple online chat rooms during the regular catch up, which allow employees to discuss things other than work if needed.  Practice ‘handing round the microphone’.
    • Frequent contacts amongst team members are strongly recommended to ensure mental health is being maintained, while also allowing staff to connect and set a routine for their work.  This contact is fuel for productive relationships that are harder to maintain while remote.

Sundata specialise in IT infrastructure, Cloud solutions and Managed Services. Delivering complete solutions to keep your business operating at peak performance. Give us a call on 07 3004 7333, or get in touch.  

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