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Here’s How to Make the Most Out of Your Move to a Full Office-Less Environment

By now, it’s beyond clear that the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic probably isn’t going away anytime soon. Seemingly overnight, our personal and professional lives changed back in March and many of us are still feeling the effects. Remote work isn’t going anywhere, to the point where many people are starting to think about the realities of a full office-less environment as we try to make the most of this “new normal” era that we’re currently living through.

However, in my opinion, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

At InsideOut Networking, we actually have a client who had the entirety of his workforce start working from home soon after the pandemic began. After a few months of this, he actually found that they’re more productive on average than they were in their previous environment. I’m hearing similar stories from a lot of other people, too.

Moving to a full office-less environment is a challenge, to be sure – but it can also be one with a very positive outcome, provided that you’re able to keep a few key things in mind.

The Benefits of a Remote Work Era: Breaking Things Down

In my discussions with that aforementioned client, he mentioned to me that they’re lucky to have the kind of work that benefits from a quiet environment. There are simply far fewer distractions at home (for the most part) than there are in a busy office, and you don’t have to deal with coworkers chatting, loud phone calls and other interruptions.

In this particular case, their work is also easily tracked – so there isn’t a concern of losing productivity through the cracks, so to speak. He’s able to tell if an employee is getting their work done or not and, more often than not, they’re actually beating expectations.

All of these things made them a good candidate to switch to an entirely office-less environment and at InsideOut Networking, we were more than happy to help.

A Transition Begins

At the beginning of this process, we helped our client make a number of key moves that set the stage for a fully remote workforce. This included steps like:

  • Switching to a soft-phone system so that employees could make calls through their computers.
  • Assisting them as they migrated to a laptop-based setup, complete with docking stations and external monitors that were made available to those who needed them.
  • We moved all of their files – which were then being hosted on a local server – into the cloud so that all employees could have anytime, anywhere access to the data they needed to do their jobs.
  • We also migrated their computers away from a local server and joined them into the Microsoft 365 ecosystem, all of which was managed by Azure AD.

Flash forward to today and their employees can now use their computers literally anywhere in the world with an active Internet connection. They can be just as productive at home as they could ever be in the office and when things start to open back up and traveling is allowed again, they’ll even be able to get critical work done while on-the-go, too.

But the best part of all is that even with all of the changes I just described, everything looks and feels like exactly what they were used to with the old configuration. When people have to log into their computers and access file shares or other programs, the process is virtually identical to the way things used to be. The front-end experience hasn’t really changed at all, this despite the fact that the back-end is dramatically different.

All of this is to say that there was no learning curve – people could just hit the ground running and do whatever they needed to, whenever they needed to, absolutely no exceptions.

So not only was this particular client left with a situation where his employees were more productive than ever, he’s now saving thousands of dollars per month on rent at the exact same time. All of that money can now be funneled back into the business in the areas where it can do the most good.

While I’ll be the first to admit that this type of configuration isn’t for every business, in this particular case, we found that some companies are far better off when working remotely.

Yes, it’s absolutely true that the COVID-19 pandemic has been a significant challenge for many people. It’s ushered in a seemingly endless array of changes, and not all of them have been positive. Entire industries have been upended and we’re probably not going to be able to return to “the way things were” ever again.

But in the spirit of always hanging onto that silver lining, some COVID-19 changes have been for the better – and for some organizations, making the move to a full office-less environment has been at the top of that list. So if you think that you might be a good candidate for this type of transition, or if you’d just like to speak to someone in a bit more detail to get a feel for what it would actually look like, please don’t delay – contact either myself or one of my colleagues at InsideOut Networking today.

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