Hybrid working has increased in popularity since the coronavirus pandemic. But how can we make sure these office models are sustainable in the long run? Let’s take a look.
1. Unified communications
Unified communications do exactly what it says on the tin – it unifies all communication methods into one, easy-to-use package. Users will access a portal online on any device that has internet connectivity, which will allow them to instant message, call, video conference, send multimedia, manage emails, and more – you can find out more here.
In other words, it streamlines both internal and external communications, benefitting both the customer and employees alike. As unified communications are hosted in the cloud, this means that it does not matter where you are in the country, or even the world – you will still be able to access the portal as easily as if you were in the office.
2. Clarity of words
When you implement a hybrid working model, this means that some people will work from the office, others from home, and some will do a mix of the two. It also might allow for flexible working hours. Though there are several benefits to hybrid working, one downside is that not everyone will be in the same place, at the same time. Members of the team might therefore be required to write handover documents, email instructions to their colleagues, or note updates in customer files. Thus, hybrid workforces must be able to communicate clearly and effectively.
3. Video calling
When working from home, one thing is for sure, it can begin to feel quite lonely. In fact, 46% of UK employees reported feelings of isolation, loneliness, and mental health issues during remote working due to Covid lockdown restrictions. Though nothing can effectively replicate human contact, video calling is a much better alternative than just email, instant messaging, and phone calls.
4. Proper client etiquette
As hybrid employees don’t necessarily work from the office all the time, this means that they won’t always be able to take client meetings in person. To bridge this gap, employees must be properly trained in proper etiquette for contacting and keeping in touch with existing and potential clients.
5. Cloud hosted phone
If employees are required to answer the phone as part of their hybrid role, it is absolutely essential to invest in some kind of cloud-hosted phone software or phone number diversion. If employees have to contact clients using their mobile or landline at home, this can indicate where the employee lives, which is a clear safeguarding and data protection issue that needs to be addressed.
6. Shared drive
For a sustainable hybrid office model, everyone should have the same access to important documents, no matter where they are. This will ensure that there is no knowledge gap in the workforce. Shared online drives are fantastic for this, as users can easily be added or removed from access permissions, quickly and easily sharing crucial information with the entire workforce with one click.
And there you have it – just 6 communication skills and tools your team needs to have to ensure the sustainability of the hybrid office model.
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