The Covid-19 pandemic that swept the world beginning in early 2020 was an unprecedented event. Nobody could have been prepared for something that caused worldwide panic on that scale. Many businesses were forced to close their doors and enforce remote working where possible. Anything other than essential travel was duly banned in most Western countries, with enforced lockdowns coming into play. Arguably, the pandemic has changed the way we will live our lives from now on.
Smaller businesses were especially disrupted. However, when we look at the technology that we turned to for help in keeping working, it is clear that had the pandemic occurred in the pre-Internet days, things would have been considerably worse. One fact that emerged from the chaos was that, when properly planned and managed, remote working for some roles could be as productive as when office-based.
Now that we’re heading back to ‘normal’ working practices – although many businesses are looking at perhaps part-time remote working as a permanent fixture – we thought we’d talk about the IT solutions that came to the fore when needed and that are set to stay as part of our working lives.
Streamlined Booking and Appointment Software
Time management became more important during the pandemic, and a lot was learned about software packages that could help save time spent on mundane tasks. Online booking and appointment management solutions have now become essential for automating scheduling processes.
Businesses that work face-to-face – personal trainers, consultants, lawyers, accountants, and counselors, for example – took advantage of a new breed of booking software packages, such as this ideal software for psychologists in private practice and similar professionals named missed.com.
Like many such packages, it allows the client to book a slot on a cloud-based calendar created by the professional. There are no phone calls, no need to chase things up; simply access the calendar and book a convenient slot. Many businesses use it – even the hospitality industry is using such software – and those who used it during lockdowns continue to use it now.
Quality Headset for Telephony
It goes without saying that whether you are remote working or going back to the office if your job involves telephones, you will have found the new breed of headsets to be a vast improvement over the older ones. Crises such as a pandemic lead to increased demand in certain markets, and IT – including hardware and software – came in for great demand during 2020. The result was that manufacturers emphasized items that were specifically necessary to overcome the inherent problems, and quality headphones were among these.
Video Calling and Conferencing
The video conferencing software tool ‘Zoom’ became famous during the pandemic. It proved to be an essential purchase for any business that needed to communicate between two or more people via a video link. For the record, the software booking package we mentioned above has a video link feature incorporated.
This software proved invaluable for teams that would normally work together in the office to hold regular virtual meetings. It also becomes the basis for running the aforementioned face-to-face-based businesses, with personal trainers holding solo sessions online with clients. The convenience of such capability became obvious during the pandemic; hence many businesses – despite having returned to the office – use video conferencing to hold their meetings.
Reports and Analysis
Producing data analysis and performance reports – among other essential business data – meant that reporting and analysis software was hugely in demand with remote workers. Where one would normally have convened in a meeting room at the office to pass on information, managers can access a wealth of data automatically collected and analyzed digitally.
This sort of software also included time monitoring apps in which the manager of a team can keep an eye on who is working and when and enables them to ensure that remote teams are all pulling together at the same time. Such software can be ably used to improve productivity where remote team working is a necessity.
HR and Onboarding
During the pandemic, some businesses had to continue their recruitment campaigns and take on new staff. Furthermore, with all individuals working remotely, keeping up with HR developments and the onboarding of recruits potentially hit a roadblock. The software developers rose to the occasion by providing HR and recruitment software optimized for remote work situations.
Easy to use and complete with all the relevant data about employees. Such software and apps allowed companies to keep wages and salaries by accurate notifications of hours worked and other important data. Automating payroll routines could save a lot of time in an area of business that traditionally takes up a great proportion of the working day.
Even by reading the above, we can safely say that the workplace environment became an entirely different place two years ago. Many people found working from home to be beneficial. The commute was no longer taking a few hours out of each working day – and the vast reduction of vehicles on the roads in rush hours played a big part in improving the environment – and the associated costs with traveling were also negated. The above tools should help you whether getting back to the office or continuing to work remotely, so we hope this article has been of interest to you.