Remote teams of workers and employees are becoming more and more common now. As the years go by and more specific technology is perfected in this area, we have a wide range of software devoted to the purpose of controlling remote resources.
One of these is known as “VoIP.”
This acronym stands for Voice-over-internet protocol and allows one to make online phone calls. A company using this technology would also have the option of enabling video if they so wish. This is not just technology targeted towards customers but also gives numerous benefits to the company making use of it.
Voice-over-Internet protocol that allows for online phone calls with or without video, is a quickly evolving technology that helps people communicate in ways they never thought possible. Far from being just a consumer-targeted technology, the benefits of VoIP are numerous to the company making use of it.
Below, we will discuss some of the benefits a company gets when they use VoIP to manage their remote forces. In this day and age, it is becoming more and more possible and much easier to hire remote employees. This offers a great flexibility for both parties and enables optimal productivity. Using VoIP for this purpose gives the added benefits below:
Even a few years ago, allowing any member of the workforce to work away from the office was almost unheard of. Fast forward into the late 2010s, and we see people working from home as freelancers, contractors, and full-time employees without having to set foot in an office.
This is because there used to be hardware and software needs which could only be found in an office setup. There were security issues as well as scheduling problems, and it generally made more sense to have the whole workforce adhere to specific working hours.
However, with every kind of business becoming more and more global each day, companies can now look forward to hiring employees in other countries and locations, which makes for more innovation and creativity to boot.
Along with this, technology has also made information much more easily accessible and secure through the invention of the cloud and VoIP. When telephone systems are hosted from the cloud, all employees need is an Internet connection. They can then access the calls and take their instruction, provide updates, and ask questions just as well as if they were working in an office.
VoIP technology also comes with something called ‘Service as a Software (SaaS).’ This enables the managers of an organization to handle their networks and hosts all the necessary software with the help of the cloud. All of these facilities combine to make remote worker management easier than it has ever been before. The cloud further eliminates the need for flash drives and storage devices, which could be a security threat if they hold sensitive data.
Modern employees have full lives, which means they would like to have the option of working both from their mobile devices and their personal computers. When this becomes possible through VoIP, no one has to compromise on their personal lives or take a sick day for a medical appointment.
There are now several online options where one can work from their computers and take up where they left off on their smartphone. This allows employees to catch up on work during their downtime. Hence, the long durations in waiting rooms or standing in line don’t have to be wasted.
A happy workforce would likely be a productive one. When a company allows employees to work from home, the latter would no doubt be pleased to have this option. They could be offered to work from home part-time, and only come into the office when absolutely needed.
They may also be offered a full-time job that lets them work completely from home wherever they may be. This opens the doors for international employees who may be more hardworking than local ones. Exchange rates could make even a small salary in America be a large one in a developing country!
Even if an employee lives just around the block from the actual office, many people would love to work from the comfort of their own home. They can work while dressed comfortably; take care of their pets; work while eating, and lie down for a break whenever they want.
In fact, giving employees the option to work from home instead of taking a sick day would prevent them from losing wages if they work at an hourly rate. If an employee has a sick family member at home or a pet, they would also feel infinitely more comfortable working from home than otherwise.
When employees work from home, they also save on many financial and emotional costs. For instance, they don’t have to spend money for daily transport on the subway or the bus. If they own their own vehicle, they wouldn’t have to put in gas quite so often.
It would also reduce the wear and tear on their car/motorbike/bicycle. Many companies pay for the transport costs of their employees, so remote workers would save their organization these expenses too.
Transport isn’t the only cost a business has when they have on-venue workers. Many businesses have to supply a proper office space, pay for the electricity used, and have a well-stocked break room to boot. With VoIP in the mix, organizations could spend less rent on office space; maybe even do without it all together! They would also obviously save on hardware costs since remote employees would have their own setup.
All this is still not considering the daily frustration many people have when they have to travel to work every day. Long commutes result in a lot of lost time, not to mention the stress of managing the crowds. Stress eventually affects an individual physically, decreasing their health in many ways. This would greatly save on medical bills and consultation costs for employees in general.
The option to stay with their families at home while working would also greatly reduce stress. Employees could then get some good quality time with their kids, spouse, or whoever they are living with.
Moreover, parents of young kids wouldn’t feel guilty about leaving their offspring in the care of others. If an individual is a homemaker already, they would love the chance to earn something along with taking care of their family. Telecommuting through VoIP enables a smooth transaction between employers and employees, which essentially makes all these benefits possible.
Another factor for heightened stress is office politics. When workers get together in a limited space, there may be a lot of emotions running high because of one reason or another. Employees may then fight over the petty things, such as whether the air conditioning is too high or not. Different body temperatures and personalities all out together in one area usually lead to cliques, teams, and unhealthy competition.
In order to avoid all this VoIP would allow even widely differing personalities to work together as a team, simply because they would all be comfortable in their own environments. What’s more, their interactions would remain strictly professional and would be very much unlikely to get personal or petty.
As mentioned above, a happier workforce is more productive than otherwise. VoIP ensures that employers can effectively convey their instructions to their employees no matter where both parties are located. When employees enjoy the benefits of working from home, they would more likely put in more effort. Their work would become better as a result, and they would generally feel more kindly towards their employers.
Moreover, when employees are mentally more relaxed with respect to their home life, they would be able to give their work more attention. Hence, the use of VoIP would mean that employees are working without any mental distractions with respect to their home situation.
In many ways, VoIP-based management of remote workforces benefits both employers and employees. A happy employee usually also means a happy employer. In fact, some studies show that working from home may increase productivity by as much as 30%.
Using devices such as VoIP enables employers to hire workers according to their needs. They may even decide to hire a freelancer for a short-term project instead of hiring a full-time worker. This would greatly decrease employee turnover rates. What’s more, many professionals in content writing, graphic design, and other business prepared areas are now working on their own terms. This means any company could get a high-quality worker without having to give them a huge benefits package or competing with other organizations. The professional, in turn, would be happy to get a high-paying gig that would let him be free to pick up projects from other companies as well.
Operating in many markets is far from predictable. We never know what’s coming next, so we need to be prepared for every eventuality. The VoIP system enables companies to do this more easily by allowing for a flexible and changeable structure.
If demand suddenly changes, or even if it is seasonal, businesses using VoIP can expand or contract very easily. Doing so can save companies a lot of everyday costs as well as overhead.
Some individuals prefer traveling and moving around to staying in one spot. At the same time, they do have financial and emotional needs that prompt them to find work. Along with this, they may have some serious talents that would make them a valuable asset for any company. In fact, the very existence of their traveling may be a factor for companies to hire them.
Business organizations frequently need their employees to travel for meetings, conferences, and even research. Hence, VoIP is a viable tool for connecting everyone even when one or all parties are on the go. This makes for easier and more accurate updates.
VoIP enables companies and their employees to have the same number even when they work form several different locations. This would not only help them stay in touch with each other but enable them to maintain a sense of professionalism. This is beneficial for both the company in terms of getting work done and the customers in terms of staying on top of projects and deadlines.
The option of video conferencing within VoIP gives everyone a way to connect even if they can’t meet in person. Hence, employees would be able to hold meetings with their team members and clients without leaving home. As discussed before, this would add to their comfort. It would also save a lot of time since no one is put to the bother of traveling in order to attend a meeting.
VoIP video conferencing also ensures that team members could stay connected while getting their work done. They may have to travel to different locations because of their work details or just personal plans. Whichever the case, their work can smoothly go on as before, and they can easily get in touch with anyone they want. Collaboration would become all the more seamless.
What’s more, using VoIP as a team would enable all its members to have a sense of unity with one another. Within any organization, such a feeling is essential. A collaborative effort is needed in order to get work done properly, even if the employees are not physically together.
The Work from Home benefit has not only been accepted by the millennium generation but also by seasoned older employees who have established their career and are looking for more flexibility. The overall savings and employee satisfaction have outweighed the cons for working from home in today’s fast-paced business world.
One of the main objections to remote workforces in the past was that it was nearly impossible to monitor them. If an employee slacks off or gets someone else to do their job, employers would be none the wiser until someone noticed the missing or low-quality work. By that time, the actions of the employee may already have cost the business a lot of time, effort, and money.
However, VoIP offers a tracking feature, which enables an employer to check up on remote workers. They can measure the productivity of employees with several reports every day, month or year. The same goes for tracking and monitoring how a customer is responding to the actions and output of the business.
Some employees may not be comfortable with being tracked all the time. They may also be trustworthy enough to not require tracking. With VoIP, there’s no need to be concerned about privacy invasion. The tracking feature is a voluntary one and can be applied when absolutely necessary.
When remote workforces are freed from the shackles of office schedules and timings, they may actually love their job more. If their employer so allows, employees can even decide when they want to work during the day. This means that if one doesn’t feel productive after they’ve had their lunch, they can easily put off their work until then.
Many individuals may feel fresh in the morning, so they can choose to get up with the sun and work at their highest productivity time. Then again, some may feel like the nighttime is best for their optimal output. As long as they make this clear with their employer and manager, working at odd hours shouldn’t be a problem. VoIP could enable reports to be processed and analyzed according to each individual’s work system.
As a result, many employees may actually end up putting in more hours and taking on more work. They would be able to concentrate better when they are allowed to work in their preferred time slots. This would also allow them to work around their home routine, thus enabling them to have the best of both worlds. The happier they are in their work, the more everyone around them would benefit.
There may also be more productivity per hour since one isn’t distracted by the usual office shenanigans when they’re at home. Open offices can really distract even the most serious workers. Impromptu meetings may be beneficial for some, but they are a nuisance for those who may be working in a flow or need absolute concentration. Hence, the findings that remote employees are likely to be happier and less likely to quit their jobs are not all that surprising.
When a manager or head of a department has to work with a remote team, they may fear a communication gap. Their team member may not see their messages on time. They themselves, in turn, may forget to send an important reminder or update. Furthermore, employees working remotely can take a break any time they like and utilize several shortcuts that may decrease the quality of their work.
All this could make it very hard for any manager to make sure everyone is working as they should be. With the use of VoIP, however, there are some rules that employees would just have to follow. This is regardless of whether they are working in a space physically close to the manager or the other side of the world.
Managers can use VoIP systems to micromanage their forces in a way that doesn’t involve them desperately trying to directly contact everyone. The system allows them to see when employees are ‘away’ or ‘available’. Plus, the passive instant messaging option ensures unbroken communication when needed.
Managing a remote and virtual work team also requires the presence of a capable manager. With VoIP, managers can make sure they are ready and on the scene just as much as workers are required to be. In fact, remote workers may expect a manager to be even more responsive and available than in a physical situation.
VoIP phone systems not only keep workers on high alert but also do the same for managers. The door would always be open for discussion, queries, and feedback when you work with VoIP in a remote workforce system. This makes the remote team more confident, more secure, and more willing to give their best in every way. It is highly essential that remote workers have access to their managers; otherwise, there would be a lot of miscommunication and unfairness involved.
VoIP is conducive to direct calls, voice notes, and instant messaging. There is also no extra cost for these services, as it is all part of the package. What is needed with this system is the sincerity of the manager when it comes to keeping employees happy and clear about their work.
VoIP allows both employers and employers to make use of the Internet connection for communication. This is especially useful when there is a need for video conferencing. There would thus be no landline issues like additional bills, downtime for maintenance, or problematic area services.
Traditionally, landline and cable companies also give their users a hard time. The packages offered for international and bulk dialing could cost more than regular separate calls. The use of VoIP would thus do away with all this calculation and guesswork. All one would have to pay for is the Internet connection, which is being used for several other aspects of the business at the same time.
VoIP’s usefulness is highly applicable in the modern world. Indeed, it encourages companies to step into the fold and update their systems to keep up with the changing times. Employees would highly appreciate the move, and even old-fashioned employers would be forced to admit that the switch to VoIP was definitely for the better.
Eventually, VoIP could end up replacing the traditional forms of phone systems. With all the benefits of VoIP listed above, it may only be a matter of time. With systems like these, companies can look forward to smoother processes, happier workforce, and hence higher revenue and sales. They would also find it easy to adapt to any situation, be it market-related or due to other factors.
About the Author:
Anna Marsh is an Academic Mentor, Career Advisor, and a Pro Blogger. For students, she is a trusted guide for UK essays. She is a book buff and has thousands of books in her possession. You can communicate with her Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus.