This morning I woke with the tell-tale itchy sensation in my throat. My head feels stuffy, my body aches and I have a stuffy nose, all signs that signal the unwelcome arrival of the common cold.
Still, I manage to drag myself out of bed and proceed with the morning routine of getting myself and the family ready for the day ahead, performed with a lot less enthusiasm than most other days. I finish my cup of tea, pull my shoes on and make my way to the station to begin the commute to work. I board my usual train, find my usual seat, sit down and then unintentionally tune in to the chorus of snotty noses, sneezes and coughs being made by my fellow commuters.
So. This is how I caught it.
We’re rapidly heading towards the time of year where this scenario becomes far too familiar for many professionals across the nation. Summer is trying its best to hold on for as long as it can, but those colder months are fast approaching and the dreaded cold and flu season will soon be upon us.
The common cold bedevils our winters and accounts for around 34 million sick days a year in the UK. This can cost businesses millions of pounds in lost productivity.
So what can be done to mitigate the economic impact which seasonal colds and flu can have on business?
Modern meeting solutions which blend communications, collaboration and content sharing may provide the solution.
Unified communications and collaboration platforms such as Cisco Webex, StarLeaf, Zoom and Microsoft teams enable people to work remotely (from the comfort of their bed if needs be.) This is possible via video conferencing, instant messaging, email, or phone, and can help to maintain the momentum of a modern workplace, despite the physical absence of key team members.
In fact, by providing team members with the ability to work remotely when sick, you gain a number of workplace advantages. Preventing the spread of illness, increasing productivity and reducing incidents of stress are just some of the benefits to be found. Even if an employee isn’t well enough to maintain their full responsibilities while at home, they still have the option to contribute when able and can help keep the wheels of productivity in motion.
Unified communications and collaboration platforms have become an accessible and affordable office solution and are rapidly growing in popularity across organisations of every size. They have reached new levels of sophistication and enable users to host professional-standard remote meetings, complete with file sharing, multimedia displays, and multiple endpoint attendance. This allows all staff members working remotely, for whatever reason, sick or healthy, to continue attending key meetings and to converse regularly with team members and ensure important projects move forward.
Of course, some loss of productivity is always going to be unavoidable. In the case of an employee who simply feels too unwell to work, they are better off taking care of themselves until they’re back to full fitness.
However, if businesses are willing to embrace video conferencing, group messaging and secure file sharing as a regular form of work, then these collaboration tools can help to create a healthier, happier workforce. When you consider this alongside the other business benefits these services offer, an investment in a unified communications and collaboration platform could be the most valuable thing you can do for your business.
If you would like to learn more about how you can benefit from unified communications and collaboration services or if you require help with choosing the best platform to meet the needs of your organisation, then please don’t hesitate to contact Prodec Networks today. Prodec Networks has a friendly team of Audio Visual and Collaboration experts who specialise in assisting modern enterprises with their requirements.