The Benefits of Telecommuting Enabled by Unified Communications
More and more business owners and managers are realizing that telecommuting can increase productivity, improve employee satisfaction, and help attract top talent.
But in order for employees to telecommute effectively, they need great real-time communication solutions. Telecommuting employees should not feel isolated from coworkers at the office. Instead, they need to be able to reach coworkers (and be reached) effortlessly and through several communication platforms such as voice (VoIP), video conferencing, and instant messaging.
The Key to Effective Telecommuting is Unified Communications
By implementing unified communications (UC), companies can better accommodate employees that are looking for flexibility in their working arrangements. Unified communications gives telecommuting employees the ability to stay connected to the office while at home or on the road.
When you subscribe to unified communications services, your employees can access any of your communications platforms from virtually anywhere: all they need is an Internet connection and a computer or mobile device such as a tablet or a smartphone. Your UC service provider should give you with the tools that you need to promote telecommuting and improve collaboration.
With these tools, you’ll be able to seamlessly integrate your existing communications technologies, giving users the power to recreate the intimate office experience from anywhere in the world by using video conferencing, VoIP, instant messaging, and other virtual collaboration features. And what’s more, you can achieve all of this at a lower financial cost for both you and your employees, who will save money on transportation costs like public transport fares, fuel, road tolls, and parking.
Having team members outside of the office is no longer an impediment to getting things done — in fact it can actually improve business outcomes through more productive employees, a higher level of job satisfaction, and by attracting top talent looking for flexible work arrangements.
For example, a study on telecommuting for call centre employees showed productivity gains of 22% for employees that chose to telecommute rather than work from the office. The key is giving employees the option: telecommuting might not work for everyone, but unified communications gives employees the freedom and the flexibility to choose their working arrangements to better suit their needs. In fact, a recent poll showed that 71 percent of job seekers considered the option to telecommute an important benefit when considering new jobs; moreover, 10 percent said they would even take a pay cut for the option to telecommute.
Telecommuting is a growing trend in the business community: In 2013, 29% of the global workforce was already classified as remote workers — up from 23% in 2011. These employees work for businesses that support telecommuting and BYOD (bring your own device) policies that allow workers to use their own mobile devices for business purposes.
Want to Start Telecommuting? Here’s How to get it Right:
Most unified communications platforms let managers and coworkers see a teleworker’s current status, so everyone knows whether they are busy working on a project or available for discussion. Using this feature is a good way to build trust between employees and employers and to make sure that communications platforms don’t become a nuisance. When teleworkers need to buckle down to get something done, they can let everyone else know that they should not be bothered — all while building trust with managers who now know the work is getting done.
But to get the most out of telecommuting, you also need to make the most out of the time that you’re in the office. Use that time to catch up with coworkers and collect any documents that you’ll need to get work done while at home or on the road.
It’s all about balance: a completely remote office will never be as productive as a fixed office. But giving employees the flexibility to choose where to work can be a boon to your business.
Want to Learn More About Unified Communications?
Contact us today to speak to one of our experts about the tools that we offer to facilitate telecommuting.
In particular, you may be interested in BullsEye UC, our total unified communications solution for secure and reliable communication across multiple devices, platforms, and locations. Click here to download an overview of the features and benefits of BullsEye UC.