- Can my team work from home? Where do I start?
Even if you think your business is not set up for remote working, you may be surprised how easy it is to quickly put together a structure for your employees, meaning in the event of mass homeworking, it won’t disrupt your business at all.
You need to start with the technology. You’ll need cloud-based applications, communications and collaboration tools and devices. This sounds more complicated than it is, it couldn’t be easier to use and you can be up and running within a couple of days. It will also help your business in the longer term as it is ultimately a much better phone system.
- My team takes a large amount of calls from customers, how does this work in practice if they are working at home?
As hosted telephony is a fully configurable cloud-based service, it is perfect for any business that receives inbound calls such as sales teams, help desks, accounts departments, receptionists or customer services representatives, right through to more formal inbound call centre environments.
A customer will call your usual business number and the call can be twinned to an employee’s mobile via the mobile app so they can receive calls as if they were in the office. You can also set up a hunt group to handle large volumes of calls. It can be configured in a number of ways, from all the phones ringing at the same time, to the call being sent to a designated first number and then working down the list. All the same functions exist as office working, such as call forwarding and time based routing. The control panel also allows your employees to change their configurations easily, so if they’re away from their desk, or on a lunch break, they can log out of their hunt group quickly and easily – just as if they were at work!
What’s more, if an employee needs to call a customer directly, it will represent the business number, so the customer receives exactly the same service and experience as usual.
- I need to record customer calls – is this possible if I am working from home?
For many businesses, call recording is a legal requirement and for others, an essential training and development tool. With hosted telephony, you can record all your calls as normal when working remotely, you just need to ensure your router at home is configured correctly. This is straightforward to do, and we will help you to do this.
It remains MiFID II compliant and, just as if you were in the office, you can store your recordings for any length of time. You can also decide whether extension users are allowed to manage their own recordings, so even if they are working remotely, you remain in control.
- Will my home broadband be able to cope?
Yes! Obviously, this does depend on the speeds of your home broadband, but hosted telephony requires very low data usage. If you are able to stream anything or watch Netflix via your home broadband, you will have no issue with the connectivity for hosted.
- What about meetings? I need to get the team together.
Use Office 365 to hold virtual meetings. It couldn’t be easier. You can connect from any location, on any device on Outlook, Skype or mobile apps. Team members can project their screen and take shared notes all in real time. You can also turn an online chat into a web conference with a simple click.
Office 365 means you can work anywhere, off any device, so your business truly continues as normal even if your team aren’t in the office. Via Windows Virtual Desktop, every employee has access to all files and information as if they were in work. It is also protected by the highest levels of security, proactive data monitoring and privacy protection.
- How do I measure my team’s activity if they are all working remotely?
The hosted telephony platform gives you access to real time, in-depth call management reporting and statistics. This will let you know call activity, monitor time to answer, manage the calls and much more.
Call monitoring tools make it possible for managers to stay on top of their agents, despite working in separate locations. Managers can train agents virtually, drop in on live calls, or even provide silent coaching to the agents through a chat-based conversation to help ensure your agents are providing a consistent level of service.
- Could this be a long-term option for me?
Many businesses we speak to are setting up a home working solution as a response to recent events. However, this presents the option for longer term flexible working. Giving the opportunity for home working, to fit in with your business needs, often increases productivity and loyalty due to happier employees working harder. You could also potentially net talented candidates as the role is more attractive and people can be hired from a bigger talent pool, further away.
A quarter of businesses now work fully flexibly in the UK and are benefiting from reduced costs and overheads and a happier, more productive work force.