Whether it’s allowing full-time staff to do their job from home a few days a week or managing a network of gig economy workers, there’s no doubt that British startups are embracing remote working in a big way. In fact, over four million people in the UK work from home – up from 3.4 million in 2005 according to the TUC, the national trade union centre.
The growth in remote working is partly due to the fact that employees are demanding more flexible terms but it’s also being made faster, easier and more secure thanks to cloud technology.
1. Cutting costs
There’s no doubt about it; offices, servers and employees are expensive. But with a cloud storage system all your files can be kept online so there’s no need for big servers to take up costly office space. Similarly, cloud-based VoIP services are helping firms reduce their transport costs. Rather than spending money on commuting for a face-to-face meeting you can join a video conference with people in any time zone.
2. An agile workforce
People working at startups are often spread in different cities and need to be able to work away from their desks. Cloud-based storage solutions like Dropbox and Google Drive are enabling busy entrepreneurs to dash all over the country for meetings without having to lug a physical computer around.
3. Easy collaboration
If you have team members working in different places, sometimes you want to touch base with them all quickly and at the same time, without having to get everyone to dial into a call. A lot of cloud-based collaboration and file-sharing software allows you to send a quick chat message to your team or share documents while you’re on the go.
4. A local number
Many cloud providers enable you to have multiple numbers that lead to one line so your contacts can call you locally (rather than messing around with multiple numbers or having to set up three different lines). Most cloud VoIP services allow you to change your number depending on the region you’re in, all leading back to one line for you.
5. More time
Spare time becomes a bit of luxury when you’re starting up a business, especially if you have to keep track of employees who work remotely. So the main thing cloud software gives you is time. You spend less time commuting or implementing IT infrastructure so you can focus on what’s most important.
This article comes courtesy of RingCentral, the cloud-based phone systems provider for businesses.