Over the last two years, remote work has become a normal part of our everyday lives. Many businesses are opting for hybrid and remote work models because of the convenience it provides along with the potential for streamlined operations. Plus, companies may save money by employing workers in cheaper parts of the country rather than the known central cities on the coasts that typically house upper-level operations.
This kind of work model wouldn’t be possible without technological advancements in streaming, network security, cloud computing, cloud storage, data warehousing, and project management systems. Before the pandemic, these tools were already extremely useful. Now, they are updating and improving these tools every day to help remote workers be faster and more efficient in their jobs.
An Essential Commodity
Once a luxury, advanced tools are an essential commodity for any business today. “Technology is essential in today’s workforce,” says Acre Gold Head of Operations Jared Hines. “Never before have we had such tools at our disposal to be able to organize and host all our business information in one place. Google suite, combined with zoom and slack make communicating so much easier and more efficient than email communication.”
These tools help streamline communication and enable smooth operations between departments. Plus, with improvements in network speeds, we’re seeing amazing things happen in businesses with remote models. “With the technology we have at our disposal today, communication between departments is much smoother than it was even just five years ago,” said Kasish Gupta, Founder and CEO of Hightouch.
“The pandemic really turned the heat up on video streaming, file sharing and communication hubs. File sharing is one of the biggest advantages of modern technology with transfer speeds being so much faster as 5G gets rolled out.”
It hasn’t been long since these tools were fairly rudimentary. FaceTime was novel but impractical for use in a business setting and external cameras required extra investment in hardware. “Video streaming and chatting services have been popular for a long time, but only recently have been practical to use in a widespread fashion to conduct business.
Now, on the other side of a global pandemic, we have several options to consider for a high-quality streaming service. Zoom is the best and most obvious option, and Google Meet/Google Hangouts are a great option for integrating your meeting links into your calendar,” says Judy Nural, President and Founder of MicrodermaMitt, on the topic of virtual meetings.
Improvements In Cyber Security, Hardware And Network Speeds
The issue with hosting large amounts of information and communications online was the risk of hackers and lack of privacy. Over the years, cyber security has improved a great deal to provide safe and closed network spaces for businesses. “Cyber security is something that has prevented remote work from progressing for a long time,” said VP of Sales and Marketing for EnergyFit, Jeff Meeks.
“Now, there are major progressions in cyber security technology such as blockchains, 5G and the IoT field of study which explores the potential physicality of the internet. Today, businesses have a ton of advanced options to keep your private cloud based information safe and secure.”
Improved security paired with faster and more reliable hardware computers has also contributed greatly to a better and faster remote workforce. Chris Gadek, Head of Growth at AdQuick had this to say, “This may seem obvious, but computer advancement over the last several years has contributed greatly to the efficiency of the remote workforce.
Access to faster and higher quality machines means that your team will be able to use their tools effectively for longer without worrying about obnoxious repairs and operating system failures. These machines are at the center of what we do, and advancements in both computers and mobile devices have paved the way for vastly more efficient lines of communication and collaboration.”
The final piece to this equation is the network speed. Long past are the years of dial-up speeds. Today, high-speed internet is a must and is much easier and cheaper to install than it ever was before. “High-speed WIFI used to be difficult and expensive to install. Now, with the rollout of 5G, high-speed services are available to a much wider range of customers and communities,” said CEO and Founder of LashPro Academy Courtney Buhler. “Without high-speed networks, all of our fancy hardware like smartphones and computers would be rendered totally useless. WIFI and high-speed connections are squarely at the center of remote workforce strength.”
Project management systems have provided a hub for businesses to host all their information and progress on projects that are currently active. These are becoming more and more essential for all businesses to use, especially when your entire office is remote.
Isaiah Henry, CEO of Seabreeze Management had this to say on the topic, “Working remotely means that you will need a project management system that is reliable and easy for your team to learn how to use. Some great examples are Slack, Asana, and Google suite but you can also explore other options like Hive to fully integrate your messaging, project planning, and files. These useful tools have cloud-based technology to thank for their immersive and synced systems. Additionally, check out Basecamp for another great option to compare and contrast.”
These tools also offer options for your employees who may function higher in a home office. “For many workers, office culture can become a toxic place. The expectation to always be or seem busy results in work not getting done as quickly as it could be. With technology allowing space for more remote jobs, we’re finding that efficiency has actually increased in some ways. We find that trusting your team to get the work done that they need to get done results in a more efficient and faster workforce,” said Jason Boehle, CEO of QuaGrowth.
Cloud storage is one of the biggest advancements for remote operations. Hardware storage gets expensive and is limited. With advanced compression systems becoming the norm, storage is a much smaller issue than it once was. Lindsay McCormick, CEO of Bite offered this comment, “With any business, you will need to think about where and how you will store your information. For a remote office, file cabinets and cluttered papers are not ideal, and more importantly, they are wasteful. Cloud-based storage has been advancing since its inception, and now you can host up to several TB of information on a single source. This was unheard of just a decade ago and has made remote operations so much better and faster.”
In addition to storage, cloud-based computing means higher transfer speeds of files between departments. “File sharing is faster than it’s ever been,” said David Gilboa of Warby Parker. “Today you can transfer and download huge files in a fraction of the time you would have been able to a decade ago. This has made launching new products and communicating between stores an absolute breeze.”
No Remote Work Without Technology
The reality is, no remote jobs would exist without technology as Ryan Rottman, CEO and Co-Founder of OSDB Sports tells us. “Technology has not only improved working from home, it is 100% responsible for this model of work. Without it, we would still be sending snail mail back and forth waiting for days to hear from our correspondence.” And it’s absolutely true. Without these amazing advancements over the last several decades, we would not be able to accomplish anything close to what we can today.
There are many ways that technology can improve our lives, but there are also many ways it can render us unprepared for the real world. “Social media has created a simultaneously great and damaging tool for businesses,” says Lauren Singer, CEO of Package Free. “There is such a big opportunity for business growth, marketing, and advertising, but all focused on the image surrounding the product. Businesses need to be careful using social media to advertise their products.”
Technology has created a set of tools that allow businesses to operate from wherever, and whenever. This is extremely powerful for small businesses who in the past had to worry more about renting offices and overhead expenses. Today, starting a business is a more realistic endeavor for aspiring entrepreneurs because of these amazing technological advancements.
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