The pandemic has forced businesses around the world to adapt the way they work and embrace the benefits of a hybrid or complete remote working model. According to the World Economic Forum, since the pandemic, 84% of employers plan to rapidly digitalize working processes.
There is a gradual shift towards hybrid working practices, over a decade. This is where more and more employees habitually split workdays between the office and home in order to maintain a better work/life balance. Developments in mobile technology and online communications apps started the initial wave of remote working. Now the pandemic has rapidly accelerated the transition to hybrid and remote working models. Although there are many benefits to working remotely for employees and businesses alike there are also challenges when it comes to collaboration.
Since the start of the pandemic businesses had to quickly adopt tools for remote working and online collaboration platforms. Zoom, Microsoft Teams and Slack have become staple communication platforms for remotely dispersed workforces. Chat threads and GIFs have replaced water-cooler moments and kitchenette gossip. The problem with working remotely is that the process is never truly seamless. And the employees are often working across numerous software applications and tools.
At the end of 2020, 70% of computer design businesses said they had not experienced working remotely before. Communication was cited as the top challenge, followed by delayed feedback and unsatisfactory tools. Video calls don’t allow for easy collaboration and communication about some important projects, when working with a remote workforce, particularly in the manufacturing, engineering and technical design industry. Employees need access to platforms, so that it allows everyone, including non-technical users to quickly create and share interactive visual documents. Visual communication is at the heart of these industries. Having access to the tools that allow on the spot-collaboration, interaction and feedback make for faster client approvals with less room for error and that increases overall business and team efficiency.
Given this new fragmented way of working, data, designs and documentation must also make sense for every single person within the organization regardless of where they are working or their role within the company. Using collaborative software, employees can interact with one another, as well as the designs and documentation as if they’re in the same room, experiencing all of the benefits of being in an office environment.
Thus, the remote working and collaboration comes with many challenges. Cloud-based technology and creative collaboration tools will allow industries to get back on their feet and adapt to the shift towards hybrid and remote working. The right technology has the potential to help businesses achieve better communication processes, cut inefficiencies, minimize errors and drive sales.