The work environment has been shaken and all industries have had to rethink and re-imagine how to operate, keeping in touch with both their customers and their employees.
6 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
By: Amilcar Alfaro, Marketing Director for Google Cloud Mexico
This is the year of innovation. It is undeniable that the COVID-19 pandemic has created challenges around the world and across the board. The work environment has been shaken and all industries have had to rethink and re-imagine how to operate, keeping in touch with both their customers and their employees. 2020 was about reacting, putting contingency plans in place, accelerating long-term strategies to carry them out in a matter of weeks, and trying previously unimaginable practices, such as remote work. Given the speed of the pandemic and the need to react, technology became an ally and promoter to help this accelerated evolution.
2021 will no longer be about reactive plans, it is time to innovate and think about a world that will be different from the past. After everything that has happened, and that continues to happen, and the restructuring that took place within the companies, it is time to ask ourselves, What’s next? What will work look like now? And how do we adapt to respond to a new environment? The uncertainty should make us turn our eyes to how people have changed. That will make us work on improving user experiences, increasing productivity, looking after the well-being of employees and reducing costs for companies. In a time of economic and social complications, what we need are businesses that are resilient and that help create an environment of innovation, collaboration and the exchange of ideas.
One of the ways to do this is to reimagine what remote working means. This is more than just relying on a physical space for everything to continue operating. The new world of work means having the ability to react, collaborate and achieve results anywhere, on any device and in real time. This new world has become an economy without borders, at a distance and where businesses no longer depend on face-to-face activities to function.
Companies that still had doubts about the ability to remote work were forced to implement it, and that transformation has left its mark. According to a Gartner survey of leaders of different companies, 82% responded that once the pandemic ends they will continue to allow remote work for some days, with the hybrid model of collaborators in the office and at home being the most popular. As well as the implementation of flexible days and hours. However, 47% of those who answered are even considering a totally remote work model.
This labor transformation accentuates the importance of improving the digital resources of businesses and the preferred trend is to have all the solutions that are needed in a single virtual space. Services such as Google’s Workplace, which are native to the cloud, have continued to evolve to meet this need. The ability to work in the cloud not only reduces costs and increases security, but also makes it easier for employees to find information, to collaborate and to apply artificial intelligence tools that facilitate and improve results. In turn, the availability of these products in the cloud allows greater mobility without affecting their performance.
The trend that Gartner names “new workplaces” is that companies are looking for productivity, collaboration and communication tools integrated into a single cloud product. The Workspace Transformation just answers this. When we think about how to make people’s work easier, our motivation is to avoid them having to search and jump between applications for both information and contact with their colleagues.
The solution is to have access to email, shared documents, files saved in the cloud, chat and video calls, among other tools, on the same platform and available on any device. This is essential for any work model, since what affects people’s time the most is the search for information without quick results. However, it is even more important for effective remote work, as it avoids dependence on a space and puts the information they need at the hand of all employees at the same time, increasing collaboration between them and avoiding duplication of materials. obsolete documents and lack of communication, among other obstacles.
So what awaits us in the new era of work? What is being created right now is a smarter and safer workspace future. Efficiency will take the lead and will be implemented in everything: in resources, in time, in space. To do more with less and reach business goals without friction, digitization and flexibility will be key. Companies that have already started implementing it are taking notice, and those who invest their efforts in embracing these trends will have the advantage of staying ahead of the future.