by Bryce Gibson
Viral outbreaks, natural disasters and other unforeseen events can cause many businesses to close their physical locations and shift to a virtualized environment. Asking employees to work from home can be challenging, especially for businesses who traditionally rely on physical locations to maintain daily operations.
Fortunately, technology makes it possible for many organizations to maintain business continuity despite the shift to a remote workforce. Of course, for businesses and employees without remote work cultures or experience, this shift may be a bit shocking.
To help you streamline the transition to a remote workforce, we’ve created this series of blog posts that will analyze the key factors you should consider when virtualizing your business, technologies you can focus on to ease the transition and strategies to help you optimize the overall experience of your team.
Consider these Strategies When Transitioning to a Work-From-Home Environment
In the current crisis, it can be easy to lose sight of the main goals of workforce virtualization. First and foremost, the shift to a work-from-home scenario is intended to protect the health and well-being of your staff and their families. Secondly, virtualization helps to keep your business operational and responsive to the needs of your customers.
When taking steps to virtualize your workforce, remember these key considerations:
- Execute today, but plan for tomorrow: Whether your business is coping with a natural disaster or viral outbreak, there are no set timelines during a crisis. It is important to act quickly, while also considering the long-term impact virtualization can have on all stakeholders. Carefully consider what a virtual workforce looks like today, and in the future. This strategic approach will be helpful in the initial phases of virtualization and in future operations.
- Take a phased approach: Begin by identifying mission critical teams and technology, then act to empower them to work remotely. Continue to take small, strategic steps to execute the virtualization, always keeping in mind the long-term plan for your business.
- Focus on experiences: When transitioning to a remote workforce, never lose sight of your customers or your employees. Keep them in mind when planning your virtualization strategy to ensure that you continue to deliver the quality experiences they have come to expect from doing business with or working for your brand.
- Adapt and evolve: Emergency workforce virtualization is no easy feat; there are likely to be hiccups along the road. With that in mind, it is important to remain flexible, and to adapt to the changing needs of your customers and employees. If your initial virtualization efforts fall short of the mark, take the time to analyze the issues and devise new solutions.
- Seek help when necessary: When traversing the unknown, outside help may prove invaluable. Consider employing the services of your technology vendors or a consulting partner during the planning and execution phases. This objective perspective and support may prove to be the catalyst for a swift and cost-efficient workforce virtualization.
By approaching this crisis in this way, you can avoid unnecessary frustration and confusion for employees and customers and ensure the most effective business continuation plan possible.
Leveraging Technology to Enable a Remote Workforce
Remote workers require access to your current technology ecosystem and the tools within it to do their jobs. In many cases, remote access of an on-premise solution is possible, but enabling such access while maintaining the security and effectiveness of the technology can be challenging.
In the next post in this series, we explore solutions to enable remote workers to access your contact center platform.