Empower your employees and give them the tools to deliver a great customer experience from anywhere
Employees have more choice over how and where they work than ever before. Driven by technological advancements — both cloud and mobile-based — and COVID-19, business has changed. Today, remote working is more accepted. In fact, according to Statista, looking at the prevalence of remote working in Australia, Canada, the UK and the US:
While working remotely might look different for some workers than others, one thing remains the same: your employees are the most productive when they have the right tools and connectivity.
Remote employees are more reliant on their home networks and internet connections. But chances are these connections weren’t chosen with remote working in mind.
Employees could be using low-speed broadband or public WiFi. They could be competing with their children using video streaming services. Or perhaps their partner or housemate(s) are also working from home.
Whatever the situation, they need the same level of secure connectivity that they get at the office. And that starts with fixed and mobile enterprise connectivity.
Bringing enterprise connectivity into the home
To empower your employees, fixed, enterprise-level connectivity can keep them productive at home. It can free them from slow internet speeds and give them a private, enterprise-level path directly to your network and applications.
By combining enterprise connectivity with Wide Area Network (WAN) architecture, you can create a scalable, secure network that can be easily maintained, monitored and managed from a central location.
Mobile networks you can rely on
For employees who are out and about, 4G and 5G give them around-the-clock connectivity for the times when they’re unable to get a reliable WiFi connection. Using a device management solution, you can easily provide your employees with high-end devices that are equipped with all the applications they need.
Vodafone keeps your employees safely connected wherever they choose to work
Vodafone provides a wide range of modern connectivity and collaboration options for
With employees based at home, on the move, and in the office, they want to access a wide range of collaboration tools, keeping them in touch with colleagues, and getting the most from the technologies that they can.
The Connected Workday from Vodafone Business (02:16)
Understanding the needs of a remote workforce
The business challenges of adapting to remote working are universal, but your employees’ needs differ. Teams require different levels of access, tools and connectivity.
This is something we’ve experienced ourselves. We held a series of interviews with Vodafone staff to see how they adapted to remote working and the challenges they overcame. Check out the interviews here.
So what can you do to help your employees?
Let’s have a look at a few examples of the different requirement of managing a remote workforce:
Executives: no room for broken connections
They need secure, reliable and unified communications to communicate with clients, close deals and keep information safe. For that you need a secure network gateway and Software-defined Wide-Area Network (SD-WAN). The SD-WAN will monitor performance and scale to meet demand, while the secure network gateway keeps your data safe. That’s secure connectivity your executives can rely on.
Customer service: full support on the frontline
The front line of your business. Your customer service team needs to provide a high level of service, even if they’re running a makeshift call centre from their kitchen. Running a dedicated broadband connection into their homes will give them the fast, reliable connections they need to manage communications, while a cloud-based customer contact centre will provide access to critical customer information.
See how this Tobacco company improved their customer experience using a long-term contact centre strategy by clicking here.
Professionals: tools that work anytime, anywhere
Knowledge workers deal with high levels of traffic and connections throughout the day but don’t need to be connected 24/7. Using enterprise broadband, unified communications and SD-WAN you can create a flexible, cloud-based network that changes with demand. They’ll have access to everything they need to add value whenever, wherever.
See how HomyHub uses cloud-based tools to keep employees connected, wherever they are, by clicking here.
Field operatives: one device, all the functions
For those out in the field, mobile devices, connectivity and access to business applications — wherever, whenever — is critical.
IT analysts are trying to monitor and manage a wider, more varied mobile and connected network. Connections are dealing with higher levels of bandwidth, and preventing downtime is critical. For this they need data analytics and real-time monitoring. Enterprise Managed Mobility provides a clear, real-time picture of network and application performance data. By combining this with SD-WAN, they can create a more intelligent network that will automatically improve data transfer between networks. This data can be used to inform future decision making.
Plus, using secure remote access applications, IT analysts can more easily monitor threat levels against your network, enforcing security measures and ensuring security systems and applications are up-to-date.
Another 17% said they weren’t sure about remote employees’ ability to remain productive.
In the UK, a study of 1,000 employers conducted in June 2020 found that pre-lockdown, just 45% of companies were comfortable with staff working away from the office.
Since then, around 70% of those surveyed said they were now changing their work from home policy to accommodate staff who preferred to work from home because they’d proven they could.
And it’s not just because employees have proved they can be productive. Businesses have also realised the cost-saving potential.
Cutting the costs of doing business
In a Global Workplace Analytics study, it was discovered that a typical employer can save about $11,000 per year, per employee — but only if those employees worked remotely half the time. It also found that employees who worked remotely half the time saved between $2,500 and $4,500 a year.
As well as improved performance, remote employees say they’re more accessible to colleagues and customers throughout the day. And they didn’t have periods of ‘communication blackouts’ when travelling either between home and the office or between client meetings.
They also said they were making better use of their time during the day. And felt able to hold more meetings with customers.
So how can you resolve problems and provide amazing experiences with a remote contact centre service?
Creating collaborative, cloud-based communication networks
Customer requests and problems can be unpredictable. Your contact centre staff need to be able to react quickly and access the right information. All without telling the customer to “hold on for a moment”.
Using unified communications and contact centre solutions, your customer service representatives can handle everything and collaborate from one location. They can route customers to the best-placed agents to reduce costs, offer self-service and assisted options, replace multiple sources of information and much more. That’s transformative — and leads to a better customer experience.
This can all be connected with global communications:
You can purchase local inbound numbers from around the world to build call flows and route customers to the right teams, first time.
You can enjoy the flexibility of bringing global voice and IP networks together, providing reliable communication around-the-clock.
See how Diversified Communications UK are using cloud-based communication networks (delivering fixed phone and mobile communications) to stay ahead of the competition by clicking here.
Using customer insights to resolve and pre-empt problems
Access to historical customer data allows your contact centre staff to solve problems quickly and pre-empt problems. This way they can proactively fix issues before they become problems and vastly improve the customer experience.
Integrating a cloud-based analytics platform into your remote contact centre means employees can simply store, access and update customer details in real time. The data collected can be used to uncover trends, which can help inform future products and solutions to improve customer interactions.
Safe and secure connectivity for remote working
Want to provide your remote workers with safe, secure and reliable connectivity that helps them be productive? Download our guide and find out how.
As businesses start to refine their remote working solutions, putting measures in place that ensure people can get the devices and applications they need, when they need them, should be top of the agenda.
The devices your teams need, right when they need them
Using DLM and EMM, businesses can centrally control the procurement, configuration, deployment and management of individual devices, which can be delivered to employees anywhere in the world, ready to use out of the box.
For employees, it’s ideal because they get access to the same level of technology they would in the office, with maintenance and upgrades managed for them. All they have to do is turn the device on.
For employers, DLM and EMM create a more visible, controllable and secure device ecosystem. They can see what devices are live in their business, and how they’re being used.
Also, the system is scalable; new devices can be added and removed as needed. And if an employee loses a device, or one is stolen, it can simply be wiped of sensitive data remotely, and a new device dispatched.
How to use connected data and analytics to improve your remote working
Businesses have access to more data than ever before. Thanks to IoT, 4G/5G connectivity and cloud-based solutions, data can be captured from every touchpoint.
But while analysing data and using it to inform business decisions is nothing new, the way we work has changed. To understand how we can improve the remote working model, we need to change our approach to data and understand how employees use networks.
How quickly are your employees able to connect to your network or their enterprise applications? Identifying slow connections and understanding what could be contributing to it, i.e. bandwidth, the employee’s device, internet connection, or even the time of day, can help you to optimise your connections.
How many successful connections are you seeing during the day and, more importantly, how many failed connections over the network and to your applications are you seeing?
If you can identify employees having consistent connection issues you can help them solve them proactively.
How quickly is data passing over your network? Does it suffer from dips or experience peaks throughout the day?
Identifying these trends will allow you to scale your network as and when needed to accommodate peak hours when more of your employees are trying to access your network.
How is your employees’ internet or mobile coverage holding up during the day? They might be fighting for access with other people in their homes who are also working from home. Using real-time analytics you can identify any coverage issues they have (and potentially spot trends of when they happen) and work with your employee to find a solution.
High network capacity can cause your systems to run slow or can cause interruptions on some business applications.
As we’ve discussed before, none of your employees, regardless of their role, can afford for capacity issues to hinder their work. If you can analyse your network’s capacity over time, in real time, you’ll be able to troubleshoot any problems before they ever happen.
All of these problems can be easily resolved using the technologies we have talked about so far. The key thing is finding the right partner to help you put them in place — or optimise what you have already.
Our Remote Working Solution brings all the tools you need, from connectivity, devices and security - to optimise your remote working model and ensure your employees can work effectively, efficiently and productively from anywhere in the world.
We’ve helped thousands of businesses with their remote working solutions from basic mobile and data tariffs, to device life management services, to cloud device management and enterprise broadband. Our end-to-end services give you an optimally designed remote working solution that will address and improve your business needs as you adapt to changing requirements for your workforce.
We can provide a simple, scalable, secure solution to improve your employees’ productivity and keep them secure whether they continue to work from home, or back in the office. Plus, we’ll manage everything.
To find out how Vodafone Business could help you develop a flexible remote working environment fit for the future, get in touch, check out our remote working solution or take a look at our specific offerings below.