Think back to the best office sitcoms of the past. From classic TV such as The Mary Tyler Moore Show to more recent offerings like The Office or Parks and Recreation, some of television’s funniest moments have happened because of lack of productivity.
But lack of productivity is only funny onscreen; in reality, an unproductive office can’t stay functional for long. One important ingredient in the quest for maximum productivity is a comprehensive communications platform. In the modern era, only a cloud communication solution can truly unleash your company’s productivity.
Cloud communications for IT
For many IT departments, staying on top of IT challenges can be a game of Whack-a-Mole — just when one issue is resolved, another pops up. Some IT “departments” consist of only one or two people, even in larger companies. On-premise communications platforms add one more system for the department to oversee, and with limited resources, these departments may end up putting off larger projects or initiatives.
Cloud communications move the bulk of the responsibility for maintenance and management to the provider, freeing up the IT department to work on other initiatives. Because issues like data security, recovery, uptime and equipment maintenance reside with the provider, the IT department can focus on other systems that reside onsite or pursue improvements to the IT infrastructure.
Cloud for employee productivity
How many hours of productivity have been lost historically to office distractions? Most people who have spent any amount of time in a traditional office environment can attest to the frequent off-topic conversations and interruptions that keep real work from getting done.
In the era of cloud, however, working from home has never been easier, and concerns about remote worker productivity have been laid to rest in a variety of studies. In fact, AT&T estimates it gets an additional five hours of work per week from employees who work from home.
Cloud communications help employees increase productivity even more by letting them replicate the in-office experience from any location. With options such as phone twinning, even those employees who spend the most time on the phone can function anywhere with no interruption or distinction from the office.
But with employees working remotely, how can companies still encourage the kind of collaboration that takes place in the office? In general, file sharing and other online collaboration tools have improved remote collaboration. Now, cloud communications open more doors for real-time collaboration across functional and geographical boundaries.
Teams no longer have to pass around documents or projects via e-mail; rather, cloud communications offer teams the kind of options that used to be confined to a conference room. Instead of limiting collaboration, companies are finding that cloud tools increase productivity and improve collaboration across boundaries.
With cloud communication solutions, companies never have to worry that employees have lagging technology or old versions of software. With updates happening in the cloud, companies can be assured that every time an employee sits down to work, that employee is operating on the latest version of the app.
As market demands dictate new communication options, companies can adopt new technology with ease simply by calling the provider and adding an app to their solution. No need to buy new hardware — the app is added in the cloud and rolled out as soon as requested, allowing the company to remain at the leading edge of communication technology.
Cloud for overall business productivity
Cloud communication platforms can improve productivity across the general business. They provide the scalability and flexibility businesses need to stay responsive to market demands. Whether it’s adding new licenses during a phase of rapid growth or moving quickly to a new location during disruption, with cloud communication solutions the changes are as simple as a phone call.
Cloud communication solutions also reduce downtime risks and improve overall business continuity. Even the most stable businesses will experience some kind of disruption at some point — even if it’s just a weather event or local emergency. When the competition’s phones are down, the company with a cloud communication platform will still be taking calls without disruption.
Cloud communication solutions can give businesses the insights to evaluate staffing and ensure the phones are never unmanned during hours of operation. With robust reporting tools and rollover functions in cloud communication solutions, companies can see gaps in coverage and make sure that customers always reach a person — wherever that person might be working.
Not every office has to function as if Michael Scott is in charge. With cloud communication solutions, companies can unleash the full productivity of their organizations. To assess your readiness to move to the cloud, download our free checklist and free eBook. For more details on Allstream’s cloud solutions, contact us.