While the cloud has been a business imperative for some time, the pandemic has spurred on the need for rapid and effective cloud adoption. According to Gartner, some 82% of company leaders are implementing hybrid working environments in the pandemic’s wake, and in order to make this work, both leaders and employees will depend on reliable cloud technology.
In the hybrid age it is cloud platforms that bring disparate employees together.
In this article we’ll discuss some of the top themes you need to consider as you look to use cloud to get the most out of your hybrid workforce:
1. Empowering your hybrid workforce through cloud
The effectiveness of the hybrid workforce is almost wholly dependent on the ability to use cloud technology to communicate, collaborate and innovate. Accessing day to day business processes from anywhere – across sales, finance, operations, HR, procurement, supply chain and every other function – is enabled through cloud… we communicate on the cloud… we serve customers via the cloud.
It is cloud that enables and brings productivity to the hybrid workforce:
- Democratization of data and information (one version of the truth)
- Eliminating repetitive and mundane tasks – saving time and effort
- More self-service on-demand process management
- Real-time, global communication and collaboration
- Increasing convenience and flexibility
Your cloud adoption strategy must be focused on empowering your employees, and how cloud helps to maximise the efficiency, productivity, and contentment of your workforce
2. Becoming more agile and collaborative, wherever your employees sit…
With cloud enabling instant access to real-time data across teams, departments, and projects, it’s easy for everyone to be on the same page regarding progress, direction, and success metrics. And it no longer matters whether they’re sitting in the office in London, the office in Singapore, at home or on the beach in Bali (in the not too distant future, we hope).
Collaboration is enhanced through channels of instant communication and sharing. Collateral can be created in shared cloud environments and instantly accessed by others to provide feedback. Everyone can work on the same document at the same time and because everyone is looking at the latest real-time document, there is no longer a need for offline ‘version control’ and webs of complex email chains and WhatsApps.
Progress can also be tracked alongside relevant conversations via business-orientated IM tools.
However, it is important that as the technology shifts, so do behaviours. Whilst cloud is the enabler, everybody must use cloud technology in a consistent way to ensure true visibility and democratization of data, and increased productivity and efficiency.
3. Optimizing cloud utilisation to drive hybrid productivity
Depending on your requirements, you are unlikely to need a bespoke solution for every facet of your business. More generalised tooling or packages can help to reduce costs and complexity while more specialized solutions can be used to address critical processes.
The key is to ensure that you choose the right technology to enable productivity, wherever your employees choose to work. Then, everyone needs to be on the same page regarding the how’s, what’s, and why’s of your cloud usage. Finally, proper onboarding and training will ensure everyone knows how to fully utilise cloud resources in order to accelerate productivity without downtime.
4. Using cloud to define your company culture
Effective cloud adoption is not just about integrating cloud tools but using the connectivity to bring your hybrid workforce together and define your company culture.
Cloud enables global ways of working, innovation, agility and flexibility in ways that were previously unimaginable. Although many organisations are well and truly ‘on the cloud’, many of these same organisations have missed a trick when it comes to re-defining ways of working, behaviours and culture.
Cloud removes barriers and siloes. It empowers accountability and change. It is the opportunity to shift mindsets no matter where your employees are based. Define the culture that cloud will enable, define the results it will deliver and then make it part of how things get done.
Sustaining your hybrid workforce through cloud
Your workforce will always be your company’s most valuable asset, and the cloud is the key to getting more out of them. Realising the potential of the cloud to connect employees and customers, boost productivity, stoke innovation, inform culture and remove roadblocks, will turbocharge your hybrid workforce and ensure that the model is sustainable for the long term.