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Continuity Of Voice In Disaster (COVID-19): Prepared to Work Remotely?


While the impact of the virus is yet to be determined, the COVID-19 outbreak serves as one poignant example of the need for agility, flexibility and cohesion in the way organizations communicate (via voice or data) and conduct business.

What happens when working remotely ceases to be a luxury … and starts to become a necessity?

With the series of events unfolding surrounding the Coronavirus, employers are making operational adjustments to comply with a quickly-evolving public narrative — one that may soon include a work-from-home strategy.  Given these circumstances, how do businesses maintain effective communication with customers? With their team? How do they preserve standard business operations if employees aren't at the office? 

IDC Research predicted that 72% of the United States workforce would be made up of mobile workers by this year. That number could spike if current trends continue. While the impact of the virus is yet to be determined, the COVID-19 outbreak serves as one poignant example of the need for agility, flexibility and cohesion in the way organizations communicate (via voice or data) and conduct business.

If necessary, are your employees strategically prepared to work remotely? 5 Questions to Consider:  

New call-to-action1. How will you maintain interaction with customers? 

How will inbound customer calls be handled? Do you have the tools to route calls to the appropriate person who is no longer at the office?  What will the message be that you provide to customers, if any, about  your reformed operations? 

Disjointed and unpredictable call-handling and messaging can create a host of challenges — the need for a unified, cohesive organizational structure becomes imperative. 

2. Can you effectively construct and manage a remote workforce? 

Already overwhelmed with the idea of embracing the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) era? Struggling with managing your scattered workforce? Employee accountability and supervision can become super-cumbersome. 

From providing the right tools, to on-boarding employees to a remote environment, a well-versed communications management strategy ensures consistency and productivity. 

3. Have you tested your Business Continuity plan? Even have one? 

While many organizations have a solid Business Continuity plan, some don't. And few, if any, anticipated circumstances such as this.

One of the biggest mistakes businesses make after investing money and time in infrastructure and business continuity is a failure to test. According to Riverbank’s Annual Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) report, 46 percent of small to medium enterprises never tested their Business Continuity/Disaster Recovery Plan.

Examples of necessary testing: Are the Internet connections employees have at home fast enough for business use? Are the systems used by your business able to support working remotely? How will people communicate? How will conference calls occur? 

4. Will you sustain optimal productivity and collaboration?

If working from a laptop, or a mobile device, do your users have the ability to function cohesively? Will team projects, ones that depend on real-time collaboration, suffer?  

Specific cloud-based platforms, like Unified Communications, can create seamless communication for users and integrate all essential tools — desktop phones, mobile phones, and computers — into one manageable solution oriented toward your organization’s work style.

Unified Communications enables video conferencing, transcribable voicemail messages, integration from desktop to phone; and file sharing and backup ensure collaboration documents aren't lost. 

5. Have you considered UCaaS?

Levering Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) introduces a well-structured, highly productive remote work environment. Even when faced with unexpected circumstances, like Coronavirus, businesses will enjoy continuity in all communications, and avoid the vulnerabilities that exist with a disjointed workforce.

And there's more ... cost benefits.

According to Intermedia, businesses who embrace Unified Communications can save up to 50% on monthly phone bills, reduce infrastructure and consolidate voice and data on one network. A Unified Communications system usually includes a number of features that can replace existing costs.

Are your employees strategically prepared to work remotely? Are you prepared to create a more cohesive system of communications?

Schedule your Unified Communications Assessment today!

Schedule your Unified Communications Assessment!

Topics: Network Management Business Continuity VoIP Phone Systems Unified Communications Coronavirus Remote Workforce Planning