Published on August 15th, 2020 | by Bibhuranjan0
How Smart Technologies Are Transforming Our Working From Home Experience
Pre-COVID-19 our home office comprised a cleared space on our kitchen table and a WiFi connection. Today, more and more of us find ourselves either working freelance or working remotely.
We were content to work an hour or so a day amidst the clutter of our lives. Our home offices pulled double duty as storerooms, closets, gyms and junk rooms. In these COVID-19 times, however, we’re starting to take our home offices seriously
Happily, we’re living in an age of technological advancement. New technologies are making working from home easier and more productive than ever. Combined, they’re making a significant difference in efficiency and cost management.
The Rise And Rise Of The Home Office
Australia’s coronavirus pandemic is significantly impacting on office workers and their workplaces.
Large numbers of people are now working from home and remote working is at least temporarily emerging as the new normal. This trend towards a distributed workforce is strengthening and this experience will only accelerate it.
Here’s how having the right tools and smart technology means being able to stay productively connected.
1. Virtual Desktops
With many organizations migrating to cloud applications, the logical step is introducing virtual workstations. Cloud hosting technology gives home offices access to their organization’s computer interface and operating system, enabling access to it from any device and at any time, regardless of geographic location
Virtual desktops coupled with cloud storage support team mobility and flexibility while significantly enhancing team productivity and slimming down the hardware costs associated with traditional physical workstations.
2. Say ‘Goodbye’ To Internal Email And ‘Hello’ Team Messaging Apps
Email is where messages ad information goes to die. It’s also a haven for phishing attacks and spam. With demand rising to support a distributed workforce email’s become a seriously inefficient communication channel and a major time waster.
Team chat has surprised many managers with its ability to nurture real-time communication between staff. Programs like Slack and Microsoft Teams are enjoying accelerating adoption thanks to offering a host of benefits compared to email.
- Device agnostic
- Instant video, voice and text communications
- Simple file sharing without the hassle of file size issues
- Ability to secure channels by team, project, department or other criteria
- Inbuilt Notification preference options to ensure priority communications are not lost
- Readily searchable for conversations and files
- Integrates seamlessly with cloud-based hosts
3. Digital Transfer Technology
For many organisations that have been around for a while, having access to the brand library is part and parcel of their marketing communications efforts. Transitioning to distributed teams demands these resources often stored on elderly VHS tapes, audiotapes and even 8mm file stock need to be accessible.
Enter VHS to USB transfer services. Not only will this service place access to your visual archives within a mouse click of desire, but it will also save that precious content for posterity, vanquishing the depredations of dust and mould forever!
4. Digital Voice Assistants
This technology was pioneered initially in the consumer space. Given we can speak way faster than we can type the enormous improvement in speech recognition technology is making voice assistants useful across a range of voice-activated tasks.
By connecting to an IoT enabled device, you could ask a voice assistant to make copies and message or email it out to your team. Voice assistants in the home office environment promise significant efficiency improvements and time savings.
5. Great Headphones For That Home Office ‘Thinking’ Bubble
If you have kids or pets and you’re working from home, a good set of headphones are a ‘must-have.’ They also help delivery improved sound quality during all those Zoom and Skype video meetings.
6. High-Quality Camera Or Webcam To Present You At Your Best
We’re all spending way too much time online in Zoom meetings to suffer dodgy image quality. Do you really want your audience to hear every mouse click or keyboard action your make?
Similarly, many artists, musicians and performance artists are livestreaming. Do yourself a favour and buy a decent quality camera or webcam if you’re going to spend any amount of time either logged into in video meetings or livestreaming your content.
7. A Multitasking Display Monitor
Pre-COVID-19 most of us were happy enough working on our laptops from home. However, as our temporary home office morphs into our full-time office, there are days when our 13-in. laptop display won’t cut it. So, think about acquiring a 24-in. Cinema Display unit big enough to support multitasking. There are heaps of great 4K monitors out there at affordable prices
8. Not All Wi-Fi Is Equal
Now we find ourselves working from home, Zoom conferencing and dipping into content stored on the Cloud from home, you may want to think about upgrading to a quality Wi-Fi router. Patchy Wi-Fi is the bane of a digital nomad’s existence and that goes for the home.
If you’ve ever attempted to host a team Zoom video conference over a patchy wireless signal, you’ll know what I mean.
Look for a Wi-Fi system that can blanket your home with a fast wireless connection. That way, you can work where you want, when you want on whatever you want without the perils of being nailed to a wall.
9. Tablet And Mobile Phone Stands
Okay, I confess these are first world gadgets but honestly, once you’ve set up your desk or workstation, you’ll quickly find having a portable stand to keep your phone or tablet elevated a god-send. A flexible iPad stand enables you to keep your eye on incoming news streams, messages and content streams while you power through with your work. It enables you to more easily use your tablet as a work machine and provides the perfect angle for all those Zoom calls.
The demands of COVID-19 on business is driving the convergence of working and living spaces. Increasingly working from home means reconsidering the technology fit-out and gadgets we’re equipping our home offices with. For many of us, finding ourselves based in our home office is providing the inspiration for migrating our old videotapes, audiotapes and 8mm movies to digital via a VHS to USB transfer service. Say goodbye to clutter, dust and mould forever!
Many of us are facing long-term telecommuting for at least part of the week, so how we configured our home office workspaces could transform our home office experience as well as igniting our productivity.
Photo by Allie on Unsplash