The COVID-19 pandemic forced many businesses to turn on a dime and change the way they operate. Working remotely became incredibly common with many employees remaining in a remote work arrangement. In fact, nearly 60% of employees say that having a choice about where to work is very important to them. The wording of that is very important to note. People aren’t necessarily wanting to remain at home all the time nor do they want to be forced to be in the office all the time. They want flexibility.
For businesses, being flexible with work arrangements will be a key in attracting and retaining good talent. Now that the world is 2 years removed from the initial COVID changes and lockdowns, flexibility means more than just a work-from-home policy. It means creating an agile work environment.
What is an Agile Work Environment?
Agile workplaces may include remote work or hybrid work policies but it’s so much more than just work locations. A truly agile workplace allows employees the flexibility to work in the ways that are best for them. Anyone who has managed people for any appreciable amount of time knows that employees are all different and each one has their own strengths and weaknesses. Some may do best with a regimented schedule while others may thrive in impromptu meetings that require them to tap into their creative side.
A business must strive to actually create an agile work environment. Above all, that means connecting people and processes so that work can be done in a variety of locations whether that’s different locations inside the office or outside of it.
The Hub and Spoke Model
Many agile businesses are adopting the hub and spoke model for their operation. The hub is the central office environment and the spokes are the connections to employees that choose to work outside of the hub. This includes work-from-home staff but also considers traveling sales staff or those who choose to work in other locations like a café or a co-working space.
In order for the model to work, the connectivity between the hub and all of the spokes needs to be seamless. Managed IT services are a starting point for this. With managed IT, the right tools and solutions can be put in place so that all “spokes” can seamlessly connect and collaborate whenever and wherever. This includes video conferencing, document sharing, team chat capabilities, and more.
Even with so much modern technology at the fingertips of employees, many workflows still revolve around the multifunction printer. Processes are digitized along the way but there is often a point where a central office printer is needed. This is a detriment to the creation of the agile work environment. Thankfully, modern printers are powerful connected devices and can be utilized effectively in a hub and spoke model.
With the right document management software, the office printer is an on-ramp to a larger system that enables agile work for those in and out of the office. Regardless of which device an employee is using, they can access shared documents, make edits on-the-go, track changes, apply permissions, and more. Automation tools built into the document management platform can even take some of those tasks and responsibilities away from employees to further empower them and make them more efficient.
For example, a document uploaded to the document management platform could be scanned for keywords or recognized formatting and then filed accordingly without further input from the uploader. Automated notifications can be sent to interested parties, if necessary. The possibilities are endless and the ultimate benefit is that employees have more time to focus on the details of their job rather than minor tasks like parsing and sorting documents.
Hiring the Best Talent
With an agile workplace, the best talent is not necessarily the talent that can make it to the office Monday to Friday, 9 to 5. The best candidate will be one that fits into the agile mindset and can adapt to new technologies, collaborate regardless of location, and unlock their own unique potential.
A business that’s ready to embrace an agile mindset may find their pool of potential employees grows over time.
Making an Agile Move
One of the hottest trends in business for 2022 will be agile work environments. For businesses to make this happen, employees need to be enabled and connected like never before. With managed IT services, document management, and print management; Perry proTech can help your business become more agile, attract new talent, and stay ahead of the competition.
To learn more about creating an agile workplace, contact the business technology experts at Perry proTech today.