Article provided by HP
When the COVID-19 pandemic reached South Africa in early March this year it was clear that businesses of all sizes would have to respond quickly to the call for working from home.
This was not entirely unusual for those entrepreneurs and SMEs with home-office setups, but posed certain issues for those in shared-rental offices who were now based at home and did not have the vital equipment at hand needed for business continuity.
While the last six months have brought trauma and innovation, one thing is clear: With the right tools, we can work anywhere. This offers small businesses in particular the freedom of getting certain tasks completed while away from their workstation.
A good example of this is the HP Smart App, which is designed to enable you to set up, scan, print, share and manage your HP printer from your smartphone or other devices with internet access.
Once downloaded, this innovative app also enables you to use your mobile device’s camera to create high-quality scans; then preview, edit and save them as PDFs and JPEGs. Storage is on your device or in the cloud, giving you global access to your documents.
Why remote work is growing
With the flexibility of working remotely, many employees have been found to be more motivated and productive. High employee morale translates to less turnover, greater enthusiasm for work, and higher job satisfaction rates.
Importantly, productivity is directly linked to the ability of your equipment to get the job done efficiently and effectively. HP has been innovating since 1939 to provide all sectors of the market with the tools needed to meet the demands of business. With each innovation, the aim is to facilitate better results in the least amount of time.
Being able to work while commuting by taxi or train and printing it or disseminating it while on the road means hours of time saved for most South African business people. And that time is key to your bottom line success.
Ways to ensure your work-anywhere freedom
The key to working from wherever you are, at any given time, is to set up your work ecosystem to incorporate what is necessary to ensure business continuity. This includes:
All personnel must have access to the most robust internet connectivity possible. With secure access and the right apps, communications, sharing documents and printing remotely all combine to enable seamless remote working.
Set up several different ways to communicate with other staff members or your clients. This would include email; Skype or WhatsApp for video calls; apps that enable the sending of documentation; and, of course, telephonic comms. Make sure that your communications are encrypted for security and privacy compliance and your colleagues are familiar with security precautions.
Establish reliable and efficient remote technical support with a reputable company or service provider who can access your device from a distance using Team Viewer, ZohoAssist or another app. Having a tech expert fix your computer without taking it away can save hours of time.
Security and passwords
Because you may need a number of passwords while you’re working remotely, it’s best to use anti-virus software that also offers password memory that includes protection in case of a breach or hack. Remember, security only works if you and your colleagues and your clients have it.
You may want to look at backing up all your work to the cloud, unless you have the time and resources to back up to an external hard drive at least once a week. Some software now backs up new versions of your documentation to the cloud at set intervals. If your workload is huge, you’ll probably do best to look into this. For those backing up to an external drive, though, make sure you do it regularly and take the backup off-site, to a secure place.
The options for remote working are growing every day and you need to choose a system that works well for you, while keeping things simple. Knowing that you can get work completed, mailed and even printed from a distance means better efficiency in your business.
While the last few months have taught us all a number of important lessons, one of the greatest for businesses of all sizes is that it is possible to run your operation from afar – effectively and profitably.