It’s a common question: how do I reduce wasted time at the office? No matter what kind of business you run, efficiency and productivity are constantly top-of-mind concerns. There are countless schools of thought on management techniques and organizational structure, and most have some merit depending on the size of your team. However, one thing you’ll find in virtually all of them is the idea that you should give your employees the tools they need to succeed.
Below, explore some universally useful tools and find out how they will improve productivity for all sorts of workers.
Hosted Voice AKA Cloud PBX
A Voice over internet Protocol or VoIP phone system is one that uses the internet to handle basic calling both in and out of the office. “Hosted” means that it’s managed offsite and accessed via the cloud.
With Cloud PBX, no one is stuck managing any systems maintenance or storing contacts and phone records. All of this is handled by the vendor, which in the best case scenario, has 24/7 customer service with a guaranteed 99.99999% uptime that bests any landline phone. Not only do you reduce downtime, but you increase access. All of your employees, whether they’re work-from-home contractors, outside sales agents flying across the country, in house customer service reps, or anything else, have full access to their contacts, call information and synched data from other cloud services you might have.
Intermedia’s Cloud PBX also includes features like Find Me and Follow Me, which simultaneously rings all phones registered to a specific employee, or calls one phone after another automatically without the caller being hung up on. Between this and the Hunt Groups feature, which can ring all members of a group like “Sales,” “Service,” or “IT” at once, no calls go missed and no one wonders whether a call was received, saving countless time and duplicate efforts.
Skype® for Business Web Conferencing
A picture’s worth 1000 words, and when you’re in lengthy conference call with clients and offsite employees, you want to spare all of the words you can. With video conferencing, powered by Skype, integrated with your other cloud services, you can bring multiple callers in to get that face-to-face confidence, plus share screens and data to quickly bring everyone up to speed. Your video calls and data are secure and guaranteed by the same Intermedia uptime service as our phone services.
Plus, you can get secure, robust, company-only instant messaging available for your employees on their smartphones and PCs, helping to ensure quick response time to urgent needs.
Cloud Office Productivity Apps
Calls and IM aren’t everything, which is where your classic productivity suite comes in. Intermedia Office Apps, powered by Office 365™, automatically save data in a cloud that is tended to by offsite maintenance. Now, employees no longer need to worry about locating or reproducing lost work because all of it has been backed up already. Because these apps, which include Word, Excel®, PowerPoint® and Outlook®, are all familiar, no extra training for any of your employees is needed.
Plus, this eliminates headaches of Mac® and Windows® user compatibility, if you offer employees and contractors that option. Everything is already cloud-ready and sharable between all sorts of users, and the licensing and updating all happens automatically and quickly. Therefore, all users at your company will always have the latest versions.
SecuriSync File Servers & Sharing
A secure place to store and access files for every approved user in your workforce is the final step. Waiting around for someone to send an updated version of a presentation or document is where many workflow clogs form. Clean the pipes with SecuriSync®, a backup and cloud storage solution that integrates with virtually every device and solution you’re already using.
Use them with your mobile devices, with Macs and PCs, and with Outlook and Office so you can co-edit files. SecuriSyc integrates with Active Directory® so you can use your address books and user settings without additional setup time. It also can use Exchange Distribution Lists, so you can share content quickly with groups you already frequently use. Every opportunity to speed things up has been taken into account, including remotely locking down and managing classified information.
Collaboration from Any Location
So how do these cloud services work together to make truly productive employees? They allow your team to continue being a team from anywhere, anytime they need to.
For starters, your Intermedia productivity apps include Office 365 for mobile devices and on the web, meaning that even without company computers, employees will be able to review and continue working on any necessary documents. Every single department benefits. When combined with SecuriSync, you can forget about version control worries. Employees, whether remote or side-by-side, can work on, edit and comment on the same document, and chat in the same window, allowing for true collaboration. Save time and storage on countless emails and versions of documents.
The remote work possibilities increase with Cloud PBX and Skype. In addition to allowing employees to set up a mobile phone to ring with the Find Me and Follow Me functions for incoming calls, they also allow company smartphones to install the Mobile Softphone app, which brings all of their contact and call data with them wherever they go. They can even use Skype IM. When managing remote employees, it’s always possible to enable or disable additional functions using the HostPilot® control panel as needed--you can even use it from your own smartphone.
Per Employee Scalability
There are more departments than just those with frequent calls and presentations who can save time. Billing, finance and those responsible for forecasting costs benefit from the simple scaling of Intermedia’s cost structure. The price is on a per user basis, so it goes up by a predictable flat monthly amount when you hire more employees, and it goes down if you reduce your staff. It’s easy to assess the costs because calls are unlimited within the continental United States, maintenance of the system never costs anything, and the only hardware you ever have to add is additional plug and play phones.
SecuriSync and HostPilot are registered trademarks of Intermedia.net, Inc. in the United States and/or other countries. Office 365, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, Skype, Active Directory, and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries. Mac is a registered trademark of Apple Inc.