Even before our world changed overnight, finding ways to increase productivity among our team and ourselves has been a goal of many businesses. Employee engagement has a direct correlation with employee productivity, with 80% of survey participants indicating that they are more productive when they work for a boss who is empathetic. The same survey said that highly engaged workplaces outperform low engagement businesses by as much as 202%. Who wouldn’t want to see an increase like this?
Remote working has been around for a long time, but it wasn’t until recently that the majority of business leaders and employees were able to take part. As a result, 54% of workers who went remote as a result of COVID-19, would like to continue working remotely and are making plans to make that desire a reality. 98% of workers who were already working remotely at the beginning of the year plan to continue. With the line all but drawn in the sand, have you thought about how technology can aid productivity? Unified Communications (UC) has many benefits, and one of which can help you be the most productive while working from home. Here are 5 ways you can increase productivity with UC.
Five Ways You Can Increase Productivity with UC
The key to making this strategy successful is effective communications from an all-in-one unified communications provider. Here’s how UC can increase the productivity of your dispersed workforce.
Way #1: Collaboration tools empower workers to effectively connect and communicate
Despite all the grumblings and jokes about office meetings, and how they can be productivity kill activities, the reality is that all employees need the ability to be able to connect with management and colleagues on a relatively frequent basis. Sometimes, daily. This is actually essential to maintaining employee engagement as it builds rapport between teammates. Now that the appeal of in-office work is waning, collaboration tools are becoming even more popular. There are several ways one can achieve effective collaborations within a remote environment:
- Audio only conferences – Conference bridges enable several people to dial into a single location and are essential when other options are not available. A colleague may not be in a location that has access to video streams, or it may just be a quick checking-in, it is vital that they have the option of choosing an audio-only conference call.
- Video collaborations – The use of video meetings skyrocketed over these last few months, and for good reason. Video collaborations are almost as good as being there in person. For one, employees are much more engaged in the meeting and less likely to multi-task as everyone can gauge the amount of focus being given to the meeting. Also, video collaborations help teammates to see the visual cues that are essential to a true understanding of coworker’s spoken meaning. By being able to see the facial expressions and body language of the participant, users can gain a better understanding of the nuances behind the words – instead of just the words themselves.
- Video conferencing – This is even one step above video collaborations with the addition of screen sharing capabilities. Collaborating on that massive project is simplified by allowing one user to present and make all needed changes during the conversation. Seeing is believing and it is much easier to know and collaborate on your project if you can physically see what they are referring to.
Way #2: Flexibility and Connection with Mobile Apps and UCaaS
The future is never certain – but one thing is. That business and life continue to perform in rapidly changing environments. While working from home, on the road, in a coffee shop, on a plane, and anywhere else you can imagine, your team needs the tools that enable them to receive vital information, connect with teammates and customers, respond to challenges or any other necessary task while they may not be sitting at their desk. Thanks to the increased connectivity provided by internet connections and the proliferation of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets, it is even easier to connect while on the move. Mobile applications (such as UCFone) that turn a cell phone into a desk phone, allowing your teammates to call and collaborate as if they were calling from their desk phone are becoming increasingly popular, allowing employees to work how, when, and where they are the most effective, all while maintaining that business persona and keeping their personal information private.
Way #3: Enhanced Employee Engagement
Thanks to the built-in flexibility inherent in unified communications solutions have one major benefit to employees. They gain more time and flexibility back, allowing them to work the way they want, from where they want and when they want. This increases employee satisfaction and work-life balance, which means happier and more engaged workers who in turn are more productive. Just by showing your employees that you care about more than just the time spent in the 4 walls of the main office, that their personal lives also matter, and providing the tools needed to remain connected, you gain so much more back in terms of employee loyalty and productivity.
Way #4: Transparent Communications
To be the most effective in their assigned roles, your employees need to know the goals of the company and the role they play in it. Unified Communications helps you achieve this goal by unifying communications across multiple devices, such as desk phones, computer, and mobile devices, and ensuring that every member of your team is able to effectively connect and collaborate with teammates regardless of their location. By creating a policy of transparent communications, you can ensure that all team members are supported and connected, and all are on the same bus.
Way #5: Reduced Miscommunications with Group Chats
Miscommunications cost businesses with less than 100 people to lose approximately $420,000 a year, according to a survey but the Society of Human Resources Management. Unified Communications has a solution for this as well, group chat. By using a unified tool to manage all of your communications, verbal and written, you can reduce the risks of miscommunication among team workers. Group messaging and/or chat enable your team to communicate outside of email to collaborate on a project, reducing the back and forth that typically happens when groups communicate via email. Questions that need immediate answers can be acknowledged and answered immediately, without resulting in a missed email from multiple responses and that “I missed your email” conundrum. Group chat that includes both a desktop and mobile version enhance the communications even further, by allowing teammates to participate and stay in the loop from wherever they are.
Stay Connected and Increase Productivity with UC
Today’s work environment is nothing like it was even 6 months ago. And with major technology and communications firms, such as Facebook, Google, Twitter, and more indicating that remote work will be the defacto way they work for years – or even permanently, it’s relatively safe to claim that it will remain the defacto way we work. Maintaining productivity at the same levels as you found in the office can be done with effective technology tools such as UC. As you envision the future for your business, make sure your communications solution will help you increase your productivity whether in office or remotely. If you are considering a Hosted PBX or Unified Communications solutions, here are a few resources to get you started:
- 15 Questions to Ask Before Choosing a PBX Provider
- Nine Reasons Why You Need UCaaS
- The Essentials of Call Reliability with Cloud-Based Hosted PBX
Learn more about how you can increase your productivity with UC by speaking with a member of our team.