Remote work has exploded in popularity since early 2020 when the first COVID-19 lockdowns sent many to work from home. As lockdowns eased and companies made return to office plans, there were a number of employees wanting to remain working from home and some big corporate names announced permanent work from home arrangements for employees. Today, nearly 2 years after working from home first became the new normal, 60% of surveyed workers say they would like to work remotely for a majority of their week and 30% of workers indicate they would prefer to never go into the office.
These are significant numbers and show a clear trend in worker behavior. From a business standpoint, enabling remote work could become an essential part of attracting and retaining staff. That is especially important considering people are leaving their jobs in record numbers to take advantage of a favorable jobs landscape for workers who are seeking new roles, better benefits, and higher pay.
Of course, working from home comes with challenges for both employees and employers. Having clear and actionable remote work strategies can help make the arrangement better for everyone.
Secure Document Management for Remote Work
When many people initially transitioned to remote work, businesses and their employees made due with the tools and services available. While this was done out of necessity, it did pose security risks and productivity bottlenecks. Was everyone using the same platforms and processes? Were documents being stored and shared in a secure manner?
Document management is one of the most important components of an overall managed IT strategy. With the right platform in place, employees can easily share and collaborate without frustrating barriers while businesses maintain security and compliance. In addition, a good document management strategy benefits employees working from home, employees who prefer the office, and those who like a hybrid schedule. Documents can be shared, edited, and stored from anywhere.
Build Connection Time
While the flexibility of remote work or hybrid work schedules is appreciated by many, there’s nothing that can replace the connections built with colleagues in an office environment. This is largely due to companies failing to create meaningful connection time to replace those now extinct watercooler chats.
Creating this time requires scheduling and having the spaces and tools to carry out the connection. Selecting a video conferencing solution is an important part of this. In addition, employees should be equipped with good microphones and webcams to improve the quality of video conferencing. All of this is part of a larger managed IT strategy built specifically with remote work in mind.
Improve Onboarding with Digital Material
Perhaps one of the biggest challenges in the remote work world is onboarding new employees. They don’t have the luxury of being able to sit next to a mentor and get that valuable experience that comes from connecting with people in the workplace. In many businesses, onboarding materials are printed and provided to employees. At some offices, the onboarding manual could be a worn book of printed pages that has been passed down from employee to employee. Not only can this be inefficient, it also means the important onboarding book could be lost, damaged, or stolen.
Thanks to new print management strategies, modern printers can be installed in the office to digitize and update onboarding materials for the remote work world. Best of all, that old onboarding manual can be stored in a secure document management platform for easy collaboration to update materials as systems and processes change. With a single change to modernize the centralized printers in office spaces, onboarding remote employees can become much more efficient and help with long term employee retention.
Enable Remote Work Today
Remote work is here to stay regardless of what happens with COVID-19 moving forward. Employees overwhelmingly prefer hybrid and fully remote schedules. Businesses that can deliver a quality remote work experience for employees will be able to be more productive and hire better employees to continue growing. A great remote work environment begins with great managed IT services including document management and print management. From help with selecting the right workhorse printer to deploying the right remote work tools for your organization, the experts at CDS Office Technologies are ready to help with a customized solution. To learn more or schedule a consultation, contact us today.