Summary of RingCentral’s Digital Boardroom – Thursday 23rd April 2020
What problems are you facing on a daily basis working from home? How has your business adapted to meet demands?
The key areas for organisations at this time is to ensure the safety and security of their employees so that they may work to the best of their ability in their new environment and feel they can work securely. Staff must remain motivated to work in unfamiliar surroundings and communication must be in place when they and the business needs it to keep morale high. All in all, staff response to the changes in terms of attitude and flexibility has been good.
Given the current situation some projects may be put on hold as they are not as relevant while others, such as Digital Transformation and Unified Communications may be accelerated to keep the business running as best as it can. A balance needs to be found between speeding up strategy and not spending a lot of money as organisations deal with potential lulls in business.
At this time it seems the work put in by IT over the last few years is now being recognised as some organisations have been able work seamlessly in their new surroundings. There are still some less fortunate areas that struggle with bandwidth which need to be addressed and the questions about reaching wider communities are being asked to address these issues.
As staff take home work computers and are no longer protected by company firewalls and security systems, it is very important to educate staff on the potential dangers they may face and support the most vulnerable areas of targeting as the threat landscape has changed in the current climate, while also keeping the basics in place.
In Europe Data Protection regulators were initially slow to provide advice and the advice did differ in certain countries, but now we are seeing more harmonised plans to deal with security functions around heightened risks. CISOs are being advised to educate their staff to the measures required to ensure their and the company’s safety.
As a result of the outbreak consumer habits will move even more towards digital than before, which will likely affect many business models. However, the change in priorities has led to a great deal of innovation in a short period of time with some organisations completing projects in days rather than months due to forced collaboration and quicker decisions because of the current climate.
Many organisations will have their personal preferences on the technology they will use in this period and so it is important to keep track of what is available and useful to your business once this is over, while also keeping the human touch in areas where it is needed.
What we see as the ‘normal’ way of working is changing. Will this be a long term change? Will it have a long term effect on culture?
It is believed that once the outbreak has passed more people will look to work remotely more often. If this is the case, measures will need to be put in place to ensure employees maintain a good work/life balance, work in a comfortable environment and that their work can be monitored effectively while allowing flexibility.
In terms of culture, the need to stay in contact has led to much deeper and personal conversations between staff and managers and created more openness and engagement. Whether this would continue once offices reopen with less staff on site is unknown.