Oil company BP recently announced that 25,000 members of staff must work from home (WFH) two days per week post pandemic. As more firms transition to long-term remote working, evaluating and improving home office set ups will be critical to success. Here Kristian Torode, Director and Co-Founder of business unified communications provider, Crystaline, looks at what companies should provide for their workers.
It’s no surprise that companies are committing to permanent remote working. The switch from office to home has highlighted a number of advantages for both employer and employee. For example, a Talk Talk survey found 58% of workers to agree they’ve been more productive WFH. In addition, with long commutes removed, employees have enjoyed a better work-life balance, with more time for activities outside of work.
Update home offices
However, to help workers permanently transition to a WFH system, employers must provide a lasting work infrastructure. The fast switch to WFH at the beginning of the pandemic forced many employees to work from make-shift desks and cope with their temperamental Wi-Fi connection. While haphazard home office set ups may have been sufficient to tide employees over in the short-term, a better framework will be required for long-term WFH.
In Microsoft Surface’s recent report from a survey of over 4,000 office workers, Work Smarter to Live Better, over half of respondents said that their organisation had not upgraded or introduced new communication tools. Furthermore, 55% of employees reported that they had to invest their own time and/or money into creating a suitable home office set-up.
Moving forward, it’s vital that employers take responsibility for providing a productive home workspace for their employees. WFH can hold a number of benefits, but companies making it a long-term fixture should evaluate how to best emulate an office environment at home, including a reliable internet connection, real-time communication and robust hardware.
Communication is crucial
Effective teamwork and communication is essential to a productive workforce, but this can be challenging when employees are dispersed over different locations. Smaller firms are often unaware of the communication technologies that can help teams to overcome these difficulties, support employees and better business.
Crystaline provides advice on the best business communication systems to suit the requirements and structure of the company. The company is partnered with a range of leading network providers, meaning it can offer customers cost effective solutions that deliver a competitive advantage.
For example, its Unified Comms (UC) service allows dynamic integration of all business communications, such as instant messaging, email and video conferencing, into an easy-to-use unified interface. This convenient system assists businesses in achieving smarter working practices, helping to bridge the gap between office and home working. The UC system is easy to integrate into existing infrastructure and provides a reliable service that helps boost company productivity.
BP joins an abundance of companies in its transition to long-term remote working. However, to continue to enjoy the benefits of WFH systems, firms must invest in home office technologies to aid effective communication and maintain high productivity.