Home Working

What with all the inclement weather recently and the threat of the Corona virus sweeping the globe, we could all be forgiven for wanting to avoid travelling into the office and hunkering down at home instead.  At times like this, it is a blessing that technology has enabled many of us to be able to work effectively from wherever suits, including the safety of our homes.

Collaboration tools like Microsoft Teams have made flexible working more seamless and productive than ever before. Flexible working has become so ingrained in certain business sectors that it is now an expected norm for many, and a way for companies to differentiate themselves when prospecting for new, key employees.


Fig1: Percentage of population who think homeworking is the new normal. Source: IWG Global Workspace Survey

This in turn leads to greater distribution and diversity within the workforce as organisations are no longer reliant on workers within commutable distance of their offices.  Businesses in UK, USA, Australia and India are the most likely to use flexibility to attract and retain top workers in an increasingly competitive talent market; and German and Belgian workers are the most likely to reject a job offer that does not provide for flexible working, suggesting that businesses in these countries are not yet fully leveraging the benefits of this option.

The revolution triggered by efforts to attract and retain those at the top of the talent pool has had the effect of trickling down to the rest of the workforce, empowering more and more people with the benefits of home- and flexible working [NB It has now trickled so far down the gene pool that  am writing this from my home office].

Whilst all this is great, it does raise issues for management of this disparate and widely distributed employees. As a manager, how do you ensure that you are retaining productivity, efficiency, and continuing to deliver top quality service to customers? Perception is often misleading: we can think we have had a busy, hectic day but how many of those sales calls did we make, how many of our key clients did we really engage with, or how long did that project planning meeting really take?

In these circumstances, what we need is access to data that informs not only managers, but each individual employee, how productive they have been. By providing actionable, true business data through communications reporting and analytics solutions such as Clobba, companies can maintain a much better grip on their operations, and individuals can keep a better handle on their own performance levels.