Hurricane weather is something not normally associated with Ireland. So when Hurricane Ophelia hit our country recently it created a lot of damage and disruption for many.
Once the warnings started to come through on Sunday evening many business owners decided to keep their premises closed on Monday for safety reasons. With the warnings for everybody to stay indoors, the risk to employees was too great and many were told not to travel to work.
Loss of hours
While it was a responsible measure to prevent workers from coming to the office, the loss of many work hours did create issues for businesses. When a whole day is lost projects get delayed, deadlines are missed and the pressure is on.
So what are the alternatives? In a case such as this the ability to work remotely from home would have enabled some of the team to continue with the work. There are platforms available to facilitate meetings where attendees dial in to a central point where they can share screens and discuss. With cloud computing, software packages and accounts are easily accessible away from the office PC allowing employees to continue working where ever they are. With most homes having broadband accessing the internet and cloud facilities are possible.
Barrier to Working Remotely
However, one of the greatest barriers to working remotely is the sharing of files and information. Some offices are still in the old mind-set of keeping paper copies of files in cabinets and as such, you must be physically present in order to access information. However, our clients have had their files scanned and uploaded to their systems which allows authorised access from their team member. And not just when they are in the office, but when their team members are working from home or remotely anywhere in the world.
Benefits for employees
When you have a great team you want to ensure they stay with you. Offering the flexibility of working from home on occasion can be a great perk. Workers stressed out with commuting may appreciate a break from it. Motivated happy workers are productive and loyal workers. By having the structures in place and information stored in a way to be accessible this can be a possibility.
Stormy weather also brings building damage, with roofs being stripped from buildings and flash flooding. What if your office was damaged to such an extent that equipment, files and furnishings were a write off? This is where your disaster recovery plan would come into action. If all files are gone, would you have to close the doors of your business forever? With digital files stored securely in the cloud you could expect to be back up and running quite quickly. Scanning your documents makes sense and with added IT security it means that there is less chance of the wrong person accessing sensitive information.
With winter on the way there may be further days of icy roads and snowy mornings which could lead to issues with staff trying to get to work safely. Put your plan in place soon so you can have the option of allowing your team to work remotely. To discuss scanning your files and uploading to your management systems you can speak to one of our team who can offer a competitive quote.