Disruption, and a sudden shift…
After the severe COVID-19 disruptions during 2020, workplaces are slowly coming back to life. Yet it’s increasingly clear they will be very different environments.
The sudden shift to remote working has led to a rethinking of the very concept of work. Rather than being a place, it’s now seen as an activity undertaken from wherever staff happen to be.
A number of large Australian organisations have indicated a full return to the office may never happen. Banking giant NAB has announced the formalisation of flexible working arrangements for staff while other companies are looking to downsize office space and have staff work from home.
The new workplace.
While staff are unlikely to travel to offices every day, they will continue to be a useful location for face-to-face meetings and group collaboration. They’ll essentially become part of a wider hybrid work environment in which in-office activity will be blended with remote working.
To achieve a successful hybrid environment, organisations will need to make some changes, including:
- Creating a safe workplace:
With the virus likely to remain part of life for an extended period, organisations need to reduce the chance of it spreading in the workplace. Consider deploying technologies such as touchless control panels, wireless screen sharing, and digital room signs.
- Improving conferencing capabilities:
Most existing telephony and video-conferencing systems were designed to have the majority of participants in an office environment and a small number in remote locations. These proportions have now been reversed. Evaluate the equipment currently installed in meeting rooms and ensure it can deliver high-quality video and audio streams for large numbers of remote participants.
- Bridge conferencing systems:
Traditionally, many organisations have relied on business-grade, meeting room-based conferencing systems to communicate between locations. However, during the COVID lockdowns, many staff have become familiar with alternative platforms such as Zoom and Teams.
It will be necessary to deploy bridging technology that will allow Zoom and Teams users to connect with those using systems provided by companies such as Cisco and Polycom.
- A shift in organisational culture:
Within many organisations, the traditional management philosophy has been one that staff should work from the office as that is how they can maximise productivity. This mindset will need to permanently change to embrace a future where the majority of staff are likely to be working from home most of the time.
By making these changes, organisations can ensure they are well placed to operate and thrive in a post-pandemic world. The office of 2021 will be a very different place however, by embracing the concept of the hybrid workplace organisations will be placed to flourish in the months and years ahead.
Would you like to improve the Hybrid Workplace experience for your team, whether they are working from home, mobile or back in the office?
Are you interested in bringing together your existing technology investments with new implementations put in place during COVID?
Would you like to discuss the challenges we are seeing businesses face as they return to the office, and the solutions we are putting in place?
Peak Insight is an award-winning Cisco Collaboration, Contact Centre and Connectivity provider.
We are a safe pair of hands that will take the time to understand your business, working with you to deliver extraordinary business outcomes through our project services, managed services, vendor products and software add-ons.
We take a consulting-led and adoption-driven approach, with in-house software development capabilities to maximise the value of your investment.