If you’ve managed to successfully mobilise your workforce to operate remotely, then you should be asking yourself does this change the infrastructure of my business going forward?
Think about, if you have fewer bums on seats in your office, does this mean you need less space? Reducing your property cost could have a positive impact on your bottom line. This won’t suit all businesses, but for those that can get it right, this could change the way some businesses operate forever.
For this to be successful though, you would need to ensure you can operate just as well (if not better) than before. For most owners they won’t know yet whether this is possible because they’re just thinking about the next 8 weeks, right? Some may even have systems that seem to be working, but probably won’t be able to tell until another quarter has passed because they’re getting less management information now.
It’s down to your business processes & systems
Once remote access is set-up it’s down to your business processes and software systems; these are how businesses ensure the right stuff gets done in the right way, communicated to the right people and reported to the Directors in the right way – so you are essentially relying on your processes and the software you use to carry them out.
However, many systems are procured by IT teams rather than involving every department, sometimes choosing something that looks great but doesn’t really fit your business process – this is where workflow doesn’t flow and style over substance can start to make an impact. Now in an office someone covers up business process system failures, working outside the system, maybe creating another separate spreadsheet; we’ve all seen it before, they are just being helpful, fixing things, spending unnecessary time (and cost) on it but it goes unnoticed – start working remotely and it can all fall down.
Do systems really enable best processes?
Both for businesses and the service software industry there’s an opportunity here; to test if systems really do enable best processes and if productivity can improve. We’ve turned down work before when a company’s processes and the software can’t be aligned, there’s always a solution but it’s often bespoke so a different, honest conversation needs to take place.
So, if over the next few weeks, you find yourself with more time on your hands, this is a good time to review your business processes and performance now you’re really putting your system to the test. Listen to the answers from your software providers support team when they explain shortcomings in the system, which may mean you must follow processes that seem bizarre or result in workarounds. And emerge from these unprecedented times with a full understanding of what your business really needs. Only then will you be in the best position to choose the right service management system to change your business infrastructure if you want to. The companies that do this will become even more profitable and agile, with a happier workforce and, last but not least, better for the environment too!