The option to work from home isn’t necessarily available to many employees and throughout different organisations the attitudes towards this initiative are mixed to say the least. In many cases, the presentation of this opportunity to a workforce stems from the willingness of the senior management team to trust that their employees will maintain a productive output, despite being unable to see exactly what they’re working on.
In some ways, it’s understandable that this may have been an issue before the advent of true Unified Communication. However, it still appears to be difficult to understand why this lack of trust exists, when considering all of the tools available that ensure productivity remains high whether working from home or the office. In a recent survey, it was found that a mere 9% of employers ‘allowed’ their employees to remotely work from home amid the scheduled tube strikes in London last year.
For the few organisations who have embraced remote working, their company culture is generally one that trusts and expects their employees are being productive no matter where they are.
has been a key driver in assisting workforces to become more effective and efficient when working remotely, since they’re working under their preferred environment. The days of messy email strings between multiple people working on the same project are gone, instead, a virtual project room or ‘Space’ can be created to manage the project from one place.
Everyone invited into the space can use this to communicate with colleagues via messages, add any relevant documents necessary to the project and even start a meeting from the space where participants can access this via desktop, tablet or mobile. In a similar fashion to other popular messaging apps, you can gain insights into how active members are, who has read messages, when people are typing a reply and tag people if a comment or directive is aimed at them.
One of the major challenges for global businesses is remaining productive with different teams located around the world and accounting for the impact that time differences can have on the progress of a project. However, with Cisco WebEx Teams, this problem has little effect owing to the tool’s persistent messaging functionality. In essence, this means that colleagues around the world can catch up with any news or updates from other corners of the world when they start their working day. For example, if someone raises a question in the UK and requires an answer from someone in the USA who’s tucked up asleep in bed, then the message will be added into the space ready for it to be picked up on the next day. Anyone in the project space can start a meeting and there are no ‘Host’ or ‘Attendee’ roles, so when Video is activated it will enable everyone to be viewable.
Ultimately, remote working for employees isn’t a new initiative, but it is a more feasible alternative to working in the office with thanks to collaboration tools, such as Cisco WebEx Teams. By creating a unique space for each project that includes all collaborators, project management is simplified and it provides a clear picture for senior management teams that may be sceptical in employee productivity when working remotely. In time, hopefully more businesses will realise that the use of tools such as this will heighten their trust in their employee’s ability to effectively work remotely.