woman waving to video conference call participants

How do I communicate with remote employees?

Summary

The right tools bring people and data together

Time: 6 minute read

Today’s workplace is highly collaborative. Your employees rely on each other to boost morale, brainstorm, set goals, exchange critical business information, and keep business moving forward. When your team can easily collaborate and work harmoniously, it improves productivity and innovation. With the increased need for remote working, business leaders are facing new challenges such as how to properly engage their teams as well as keeping the lines of communication open.

Remote work has been happening for decades, but never at this magnitude and with this degree of urgency. In the early months of 2020, there were already 7 million people working remotely in the U.S.1 That number is estimated to grow as more companies shift their work from home policies to accommodate the needs and desires of employees.

 

Right now, some of the biggest breakdowns we’re seeing when it comes to collaboration include:

  • Lack of real-time communication between coworkers and managers
  • Slow, inefficient file-sharing capabilities
  • Incautious security measures - leaving to the door open to risks
  • Time-consuming searches for documents and data
  • Lean IT resources to help when support is needed

Whether you have a partial or fully remote team, the goal is to keep them engaged and empowered. In our “always on” world, your team needs the speed, technology and capability to be productive from anywhere, at any time - and for many businesses, adapting to the "new normal" of global working conditions, this is no longer an option.

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Companies around the country are facing multiple challenges, including ensuring that their business is agile enough to adapt to change. Our research shows that businesses that haven't already considered the financial and strategic benefits of flexible workspace need to do so now. Otherwise, they face being seen as out of touch, both with their competitors and with the demands of the modern workforce, which means losing out on the best talent.

Mark Dixon CEO IWG

 
As advanced automation and collaboration solutions help to create more productive and innovative workplaces, traditional work environments are struggling to keep up. These unprecedented circumstances have caused many companies to look inward and realize the need for rapid digital transformation. Businesses that have made the transition to a modernized, digitized work environment are already experiencing the benefits of more automated, efficient workflows and improved productivity.

While this transition doesn’t happen overnight, with the guidance of experts your business can make significant changes that work to help you achieve new levels of success. Start by following these simple guidelines and notice where you see opportunities for improvement.

woman participating in a video conference call

Create a hub for teamwork

Your team works best when information is at their fingertips, thoughts and ideas can be shared quickly and easily, and meetings can be organized and carried out seamlessly. To achieve this, companies need a strong collaborative platform like Microsoft Teams to work from.

This platform should encompass all aspects of collaboration and communication, allowing workers to:

  • Share documents, photos, PDFs, and other files
  • Offer video conferencing and screen-sharing capabilities
  • Interact via group and individual chat
  • Conference call from any location

Microsoft Teams, a component of Microsoft 365, offers all these features. It even provides you with optional reports to tell you how your employees are using Teams, giving you a better understanding of how to promote user engagement.

Your collaborative platform should make work easier, not more complicated. When done the right way, a well thought-out and organized approach can help you reap the most benefits from any type of new office application. Before you commit to using a platform, be sure it offers the agile features your team will require not only now but also in the future.

 

Modernize workflows and document management

All workers, remote or in-office, want to spend less time looking for dispersed documents and files. Time spent searching for papers in file cabinets, or information lost in a sea of emails is time wasted. Implementing modern, automated workflows and digital document management allows your team to shift their focus to high-level initiatives and drive business growth.

With intuitive digital workflow solutions like DocuWare, in-office, remote teams and external collaborators will have secure access to all the information they need, anywhere and anytime. DocuWare also provides:

  • Automated capture, routing, indexing and archiving of critical data
  • Flexible cloud or on-premise solutions for seamless IT and third-party integrations
  • Future-proofed technology for secure, scalable applications
  • The ability to eliminate manual tasks and delays associated with paper documents
  • Activity logging and reporting to maintain transparency

Make the most of your current collaboration tools

Improving collaboration within your team doesn’t always require an excessive investment of expensive technology. With your Ricoh multifunction printer, you can gain access to expanded features that enable you to scan, share, and save documents that can then be converted to various file formats like Word, Excel and PDF.

These Smart Integration solutions boost collaborative efforts by making documents easy to find when you need them, and even easier when you want to share them securely. With customizable options, and capabilities delivered via the cloud, you can take advantage of even more functionality within the device you already use.

Use Smart Integration Connectors to:

  • Scan and print from cloud accounts such as Box™, Dropbox™, Google Drive™, OneDrive® for Business, SharePoint® or RICOH Content Manager
  • Convert to editable and searchable formats
  • Print from the cloud from tablet or smartphone

Use Smart Integration Workflows to:

  • Auto-route documents using QR codes
  • Simultaneously route files to multiple destinations
  • Scan directly to folders (cloud or on-premise) with automated file and folder naming

Use Smart Integration Advanced Workflows to:

  • Auto-route to destinations based on document type
  • Scan to cloud folders, local folders or a document library in SharePoint Online®
  • Scan to SharePoint Online®, with metadata fields automatically populated

Give your team the support they need

When your team has the tools and resources they need to collaborate, everyone wins. But does your business have a plan in place to be certain your team has the necessary support to troubleshoot an issue? Is your critical information secure on the platforms, personal devices, and networks your teams are using? Ideally, you’ll want to find a solution that provides both support and security - giving your team the support they need to collaborate effectively, while giving you peace of mind that your data is safe.

For example, you should look for:

  • A 24/7 service desk that manages and monitors your operating systems and workstations
  • Mobile Device Management services to be sure your team can access corporate data from personal devices
  • Server backup and data protection to ensure business continuity

Businesses that understand the value of open communication and collaboration are turning to experts for guidance to the most effective solutions. Especially from a remote perspective, the right tools can bring people and data together from anywhere, and keep your business running seamlessly. Pair these tools with dedicated support and advanced security measures to keep your team connected, collaborating and ready to accomplish more.

 
 

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1Source: https://www.business2community.com/human-resources/25-key-remote-work-statistics-for-2020