The trick to being a successful small- to medium-sized business is doing a lot with a little. A recent survey of SMEs revealed just 50% of those with below average levels of operational efficiency see sales grow. The agility and adaptability your size affords you must be stacked up against the challenges of having a small team or resource base. Chances are you already have a mobile working culture. But are you truly maximising your mobile productivity?
Make the most of applications and services that could really boost your mobile working with these 5 tips:
1. Get in the cloud
One of the main advantages of moving from fixed service to cloud services is that it allows you access your network, anytime, anywhere. In fact, almost 80% of businesses already investing in mobile and the cloud are performing above their peers for operational efficiency and enjoying higher growth as a result.
Depending on the cloud solution, you can access email, voice, -even all your desktop applications – wherever you are and on a mobile device of your choice. This gives you the flexibility to work at home, in the office or on the move with a consistent experience.
2. Use wireless connectivity wherever possible
According to the Wi-Fi Alliance, 71% of all mobile communications flows over Wi-Fi. As connectivity becomes more essential to people’s everyday lives, free public Wi-Fi is becoming more widespread. Hotspots are becoming more common in offices, airports, train stations, cafés and other public spaces, so what used to be dead time is now an opportunity to continue working. It’s key to make sure employee devices are Wi-Fi ready, so they can make the most of any available wireless connectivity. Wi-Fi services like The Cloud even provide a FastConnect app that allows users to locate their nearest hotspot, taking the hassle out of the process.
3. Don’t forget about security
One of the concerns with mobile working in general is the possible security risk of an external device having access to the network. These concerns aren’t unfounded (according to Check Point, 42% of IT executives have seen mobile security incidents cost their business over $250,000), but there are solutions. Services like Citrix, that let you access your network from wherever you are, provide two-factor authentication and require login with a fob. There are a multitude of mobile device management apps that require a passcode to access data from a personal mobile device. These apps will also allow you to remotely wipe the data on a phone if the employee loses it. So you can empower your employees to work remotely whilst still maintaining a secure network.
4. Take calls wherever you are
The last thing you want is to miss an important call to the office when you’re out and about. This is why a phone system that allows call-twinning is such a powerful tool for SMEs. Every time your office phone receives a call, so too will your mobile device, meaning you can instantly take important business calls when you’re out of the office. And because you can be reached wherever you are from a single phone number, this provides greater consistency from the customer’s point of view.
Apps that deliver the same functionality over your normal phone network are also available from Google Play and the App Store.
5. Take the power back
The main benefit to your organisation in moving to a hosted service that it puts control back in your hands. Fixed services require the supplier to do all the implementation, as well as costly and inflexible onsite infrastructure. But a hosted solution allows a business to configure their services as they go along without relying on the provider or a local IT resource. Everything is scalable at a moment’s notice, allowing you to work in a less resource-intensive way.
Agile working means that size doesn’t really matter. With the right mobile working practices, you can unlock the productivity of an organisation twice your size.