How The PC Support Group is helping improve business efficiency through remote working
New technology is allowing remote working to become a more feasible option for business. In this article The PC Support Group provides an insight into the way it is helping improve business efficiency through remote working
Martini, the 70’s drink is making a comeback but not in the form you know it. This is the latest buzzword being used around the most innovative companies in the UK.
“Martini” employment refers to flexible working arrangements where employees are able to work “any time, any place, anywhere” (the strap line for the drink in the 70's).
According to a Mori poll, eight million of us prefer ‘Martini’ employment to a regular 9-5 job - and it’s not hard to figure out why. Modern lifestyles mean that many families have two breadwinners yet they still have to fit in all the usual chores such as banking, shopping, cleaning, dropping off and picking up the children from school or nursery… the list goes on. All this means more stress and less quality work!
Flexibility as to when and where people work enables them to work and live more effectively with benefits to employers and employees alike.
Simon Albert, Director of The PC Support Group, a rapidly expanding nationwide IT service company, has found that many forward thinking businesses are recognising the massive benefits of creating ‘virtual offices’: “It used to be the case that a home or mobile worker could use their PC or laptop anywhere but they couldn’t necessarily connect to the internet or head office, or if they had a technical problem they couldn’t get help because the IT support was only office based. On top of this, they weren’t part of the central telephone system so they couldn’t receive calls as they would in head office. All that has now changed”
“Anyone can now connect to the internet and their head office using high speed connections from practically anywhere: home, coffee shops, hotels, airports… new wireless connections are popping up every week”
“As for support, The PC Support Group uses technology that enables us to fix 90% of IT related problems remotely without us even visiting you. Providing you have an internet connection we can help. You could be at home or even in a hotel abroad!”
“Now with VoIP, telephony over the internet, the virtual office is complete. Calls taken centrally can now be directed to anywhere in the world as if it is an office extension… and at no extra cost! In fact we use this to transfer support calls to our regional offices throughout the UK.”
So what specific benefits does this bring to a business?
Well firstly it means that offices need not be as large, as staff can work from other locations equally efficiently. Walk into any office on any day of the week and you will see empty desks. Why not have less desks for those that really need to physically come into work. This in itself can save thousand or in some cases millions.
Large companies such as IBM have been advocates of flexible working for some time. They say “Organisations can gain competitive advantage and improve customer service through a radical review of the way their employees work. Changes in the way office space is allocated (non-territorial working), opportunities for staff to work from home (home-working) and the ability of staff to connect with information and systems while on the move (mobile working) have the potential to reduce physical infrastructure costs, improve productivity, motivation and work/life balance.”
Now this flexibility is available to the smallest company, creating these same advantages and savings.
The PC Support group has worked with a number of small businesses throughout the UK to improve their productivity and flexibility by using technology more effectively.
One such business is Document Direct which provides virtual secretarial services to businesses and individuals; converting spoken dictation to documents and letters, sometimes within minutes. Its services have been shown to reduce in-house typing related costs by up to 60% and their clients regularly report a massively improved document turnaround.
But these amazing results have not been achieved by accident... Document Direct ensures it has availability of staff at all times (practically 24-7) and the ability to cope with urgent requirements through its highly trained and flexible network of home based typists and secretaries.
This wider resource model works perfectly but it means that the company cannot afford for their technology to let them down.
Jayne Smith, Document Direct’s Head of Operations says “Our business structure means we can react quickly to our clients needs and it equally means we get to tap into a fantastic resource of talented people who can’t necessarily commit to 9 to 5 office based jobs.”
To enable the operation to run smoothly, Document Direct utilises a number of technologies and can’t afford for any of them to fail. This means having the right technology partner is paramount.
The PC Support Group ensures their network of home-based staff receive ongoing, high quality IT support to guarantee their computers and the software, on which the business relies, work without fail. They also ensure that the technologies at head office and those at each of the home-based operators work together seamlessly.
Martini working can also help to deliver “green” improvements, important in our ever more environmentally aware society, and can lead to direct cost savings throughout a business.
Just imagine how many unnecessary hours are wasted (not to mention fuel) through unnecessary journeys to and from head offices and even to and from customer premises. By changing the way they work and fully integrating computer and telephony systems even small companies can make significant savings.
The PC Support Group practices what it preaches and operates out of small locally based offices throughout the UK whilst each office is linked to the same central telephone system and uses the same support software and systems. This means the business has all the advantages of a large headquarters such as great communication and high quality systems but without the overhead. It also means that their customers receive a local and personal service.
Simon Albert says “This total integration means we can transfer calls as if our offices were on an extension at the next table and if we record customer information it is instantly available to those that need it, wherever they are in the country.”
By using the latest remote support technology The PC Support Group has also improved the speed and efficiency with which their customer’s computer problems can be resolved, reduced ‘dead’ time through unnecessary travel, and saved costs through reduced fuel usage.
Simon added “Our customers get a superb service while we save money and are kinder to the environment. It’s a win, win, win situation so everyone’s happy.”
If you have challenges as a small but growing business and want to know how to get the most from your technology, or you’re a home based worker concerned about your reliance on your computer, then why not get in touch and find out what we can do for you?
Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Phil Bird is the co-founder and Director of The PC Support Group which provides IT Support for small business and home users