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How cloud is enabling the new working normal

Cloud will become a crucial backbone of ‘the new normal’ in ensuring teams can collaborate easily and securely wherever they are.

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With employees working remotely and from home in their millions across the globe, businesses are bracing themselves for one of the biggest changes to working behaviour in a generation. Indeed, according to Deloitte’s research, some companies are considering remote working for 30-35% of their workforce on a permanent basis.

But as necessity shifts to strategy, businesses of all shapes, sizes and industries will be keen to ensure that their new, remote workforces are operating productively and efficiently. That will mean a close examination of the cloud-powered collaboration tools that, for many businesses, have driven productivity in these most challenging of times.

Collaborating in the cloud

Simply put, when people are connected across a business, it’s easier to empower them with the information they need to understand their role and get the job done.

But particularly in a world where remote working is a central part of company culture, not a government mandate, collaboration platforms keep people connected regardless of geographies and time zones. For international companies, these platforms have opened the eyes of employees to cross-border collaboration which could have been so easily dismissed in the past. For so long, physical meetings, swapping papers and clunky conference calls have been the accepted way of doing business. Now, genuine collaboration across digital teams is driving a new generation of productivity.

While these tools may have become critical to maintaining productivity and real-time communication across teams of people, they will remain essential to the DNA1 of future success stories because of the impact they have on the way business is done.

The cloud effect

The cloud is not a new concept and has been at the heart of businesses’ digital transformation journeys. However, with massively decentralised workforces set to be the operational norm for a prolonged period of time, cloud deployments will need to be prioritised in order to not only keep business going, but to ensure it’s moving forwards.

Crucially, it’s application can help to address:

  • Unstructured and disparate paper and digital information management, by bridging the gap between physical and digital workflows to ensure that information can safely be shared, accessed and collaborated on effectively between remote workers. Not only will this reap immediate rewards, but it will empower a mobile and remote workforce, effectively futureproofing enterprise operations as ‘normal’ is redefined.
  • Inaccuracies of data capture and processing caused by manual and uncontrolled document workflows. With more and more people working from home, the potential for error creeps up if home offices aren’t properly equipped or workarounds to corporate policies are found. Centralised cloud infrastructure eliminates this risk and ensures workflows are accurate, accountable and efficient.
  • Maintaining information security and compliance for the entire document lifecycle is a business priority in all situations but risk can increase when data is accessed on the go. However, compliancy can be achieved in the cloud and the right tools can add robustness to flexibility, safeguarding enterprise and customer information alike.

These are the success factors of a thriving and connected company culture but they’re enabled by cloud processes. Fuelled by the insight of these workflows, leaders can empower progressive change within a business by building on productivity gains and eradicating processes which aren’t working. So while these measures may be borne out of necessity, they’ll be maintained and enhanced out of virtue.

Delivering the power of community to work

Every company has been on its own journey to digitally transform. All have seen those plans either tested to their limits or accelerated. The commonalities between them include stringent information management and security needs, mobility and process automation requirements, and by faster adoption of cloud and managed services.

The changes everyone is experiencing will be profound and long-lasting but businesses can take positive lessons. The increase in collaboration tools, even if imposed out of necessity, can and should be one of those lessons. Removing the roadblocks to the free-flow of information across an organisation can transform people’s ability to fulfil their roles and realise their potential.

We often talk of the “world getting smaller” and “international communities” but all too often these buzzwords do not convey the true culture of business life. Only by embracing cloud workflows can this vision truly be realised.

Genuine collaboration is the result. Making work faster, bringing people closer, and making company culture stronger through effective communication can not only spark creativity and innovation but take productivity to new heights.


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