Smart Working: The way to effective teamwork

The impact of smart working and how to increase employee productivity with communication and collaboration tools

Effective teamwork and collaboration play an important role in the age of digitalization. It should be clear that implementing digital communication and collaboration is easier said than done. For this reason, the following section will take a closer look at this topic, highlight the advantages and describe the use of a central collaboration tool in more detail

The world around us is becoming smarter. We use our smartphones to make phone calls and surf in the world wide web, check the time and new messages on our smartwatches, and control lights and blinds at home by voice command to our smart home. But what about our everyday working lives? Massive changes have taken place in recent years here as well. Thus, more and more companies are focusing on smart working

What does smart working mean?

Simply put, it makes working easier, agiler and, ultimately, more efficient. Compared to traditional working models, smart working emphasises on maximising employee flexibility and optimising work processes.

The 4 most important advantages of smart working

  1. Companies can deploy their staff more efficiently and productively e.g., by working from home
  2. Companies unburden their IT department because employees can use the systems intuitively
  3. Companies offer their customers enhanced services, like by giving customer service agents quicker access to necessary information and resources
  4. Simultaneously, by making work easier and offering greater flexibility in working hours and workplaces, employees are more satisfied and loyal. SMEs, in particular, can significantly reduce staff turnover in this way. This is achieved primarily by using special collaboration tools for co-working and customer interaction — collectively known as Unified Communication and Collaboration (or UCC in short)

What does Unified Communication (UC) mean?

All the employees’ communication tools are brought together into one unified application: messenger, audio and videotelephony, email, etc. Ideally, all of these functions can be used regardless of the end device, be it a desktop computer, a mobile laptop or a smartphone.

Teamwork with collaboration tools

Microsoft Teams is the tool of the day when it comes to collaboration. With more than 115 million users worldwide, it has already overtaken Slack, Zoom, WebEx and Co. Its success — especially in business — is also due to its deep integration into other Microsoft products such as Office 365. For years, companies have relied on Microsoft’s familiar Office suite, and a now growing number uses Teams to take collaboration to a whole new level: employees working in their offices, from home and even across different remote locations.

What is collaboration?

Seamless communication between staff creates new collaboration opportunities. With solutions like Microsoft Teams, documents can be easily shared and edited together, bringing workgroups from different departments and locations closer together virtually.

Unfounded fear of change impedes companies

Many companies have been wary about flexible working schemes such as working remotely or from home until recently. After all, the traditional working arrangement with fixed office hours had proven itself for decades. Likewise, a plethora of prejudices has also been reinforced over time.

The 4 biggest misconceptions about working from home:

  1. Staff are only productive when in the office
  2. Nothing can replace an on-site meeting
  3. True teamwork and team spirit can only develop by being physically present
  4. Linking up with remote workers is time-consuming and unsafe

The past few months have caused many business owners, team leaders and IT managers to rethink their approach. And, hardly surprisingly, the preconceptions mentioned above could all be refuted without exception. Shifting to smart working and using appropriate collaboration tools led to increased employee productivity and a noticeable workload reduction for team managers and the corporate IT department.

Smart Working, Cloud-Telephony, Collaboration, NFON

The most important benefits of Unified Communications and Collaboration (UCC)

Companies benefiting from:

  • Rapid ROI through higher staff productivity and lower costs
  • Higher staff loyalty and overall satisfaction
  • Simplified compliance with GDPR requirements
  • Think Big: harnessing the swarm intelligence of all employees

Employees benefit from:

  • More efficient collaboration through chat, audio and video conferencing
  • Customised access to files and client data
  • More productive teamwork
  • Combining all communication solutions into one familiar environment

IT Administrators benefit from:

  • Flexible implementation of new and existing systems
  • Workload reduction due to less training effort and fewer tickets
  • Seamless integration with cloud telephony solutions

Get more out of Microsoft Teams

Remote Working, Cloud Communication, NFON

One in five professionals working from home sees insufficient collaboration and communication opportunities as the biggest challenge of working remotely. 

Microsoft Teams comes with a wealth of features. Yet, many of them can only be used in tandem with a fitting telephone system. Those who use Teams on an outdated on-premises PBX drive their luxury sports car with the handbrake on — doable but hardly adequate. Thanks to modern cloud-based telephony systems like Cloudya from NFON, Microsoft’s solution can unfold its full potential and provide companies with benefits of unified communication and collaboration mentioned above.

Providing more features with cloud-telephony

But not every cloud telephony system is equally well suited since very few solutions offer the required deep Teams integration into the system. This is because Microsoft’s telephony solution still lacks basic functions such as connecting to analogue terminals; CLIR and CLIP have to be set up by the IT administrator for every employee, and for forwarding calls, only one profile is available. Microsoft is not a cloud telephony specialist. Those who want to use all of these essential features and many others more should rely on a provider with long-standing experience in the field of cloud telephony, such as the European market leader NFON. With Nvoice for Microsoft Teams, NFON offers a reliable solution to provide all the necessary telephony features through the Cloudya PBX functions.

Digital Communication has never been so easy

As a result, companies enjoy full PSTN connectivity and can use Microsoft Teams as their one-stop solution for internal and external communication — regardless of location and devices used. But even those using other telephony solutions (whether on-premises or in the cloud) do not have to forego the full range of services offered by Microsoft Teams. Migrating existing systems to Cloudya, the Cloud telephony system from NFON is straightforward and can be carried out entirely remotely. And with Nvoice for Microsoft Teams, organisations will be able to access the full feature set of Microsoft Teams.

Smart working will quickly become the “new normal” in the professional world. The way employees communicate with customers and among themselves is dramatically changing, and new ways of team-working are thus emerging. With solutions such as Microsoft Teams combined with a modern cloud telephony system, this crucial step towards the new normality of Unified Communication & Collaboration can be accomplished.

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