There’s no doubt about it the impact of Coronavirus has been huge, but how much will go back to “normal” when this is all over? What is “normal” going to be? Because it will not be what we were all used to pre covid-19.
In this post we will aim to set out what we believe the differences will be and what you and your team need to do to not only survive but thrive. Also please feel free to let know your thoughts.
A bit of back story from our perspective which I’ll try to keep to the point. In trying to balance relationship building and customer service our engineers have often opted to go to the clients’ offices and carry out our services in person when they could be done remotely.
This has been done for a few reasons as well as the two mentioned above, it seems somewhat counter-intuitive to spend time traveling when no or little other client work can be carried out when a job can be done remotely but we feel on balance the benefits outweigh this and until recently it’s been hard for clients’ to understand that a decent job can be done remotely. That’s by far a criticism but as remote working has only recently been largely adopted by UK businesses, you know what you know. (In March we set up over 500 VPN connections for our clients).
So we’ve always been advocates for the fact that remote working is not only possible but has many benefits over traveling to the office, like all things in life though, it’s surely about finding the right balance?
What’s it going to be like when Lockdown is over?
There’s no doubt about it things will be different, I think there’s a new understanding from management about how businesses can operate extremely efficiently remotely.
So I believe we will see a mix, I think we will all rush back into our offices to see co-workers and I doubt much work will be done that first day back, however as the dust settles I think we will see a much more fluid and connected workplace not just by office feng shui.
We’ve all spent a lot of time setting up remote working and forcibly become accustomed to it, there will no doubt be times when this makes sense rather than popping into the office.
How can businesses adapt to this new landscape?
Some things never change, clients and prospects will still want requests dealt with rapidly as the internet has accustomed us to, so we will all still need to offer amazing support on our products and services, however, there will be an understanding that a colleague may be working remotely and so hasn’t yet spoken to the office about a report or proposal yet.
This means that while answers to queries will need to be quick an understanding that the answers aren’t immediately available will purvey.
As we get back into the swing of the new normal it will be important to have amazing team collaboration software to effectively communicate and deliver for your clients. Things such as teamwork.com and Slack are great for this, they allow for fluid communication and bundling projects together, many of our clients have been using these tools for years and if you’re not using them yet I suggest you check them out.
Awesome phone systems that are adaptable and full of helpful features will be paramount. Such as not only a desk phone but also backed by an app you can have on your Laptop, Desktop, iPad, Mobile Phone, etc. They allow you to do everything you can do at your desk and more such as chat with colleagues and visual voicemail.
Apparently we’ve all spent a huge amount on home office furniture, for those that have space this will no doubt stay and continue to allow us to get huge amounts done outside the office, therefore ergonomic workspaces will be incredibly important to allow a fluid workflow.
flexible working embedded as standard, will no doubt be the biggest challenge, however, companies that allow their workforce to work flexibly and monitor results rather than time will benefit the most. Giving your team the freedom to produce results at the best times rather than clocking in and clocking out will have huge benefits for your business. Make sure that it’s part of your HR policy and you’re constantly adapting and monitoring.
These are the core principles we should all focus on to allow for efficiency and growth coming out of COVID-19 there will no doubt be much much more to look at as we all get back to “normal”
Thanks, everyone that made it this far, we’d love to hear from you.