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Tame comms chaos and reap the rewards

Tue 23 Dec 2014
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Employees are facing communications mode overload, says Plantronics’ Graeme Gherbaz. Tame it and reap the rewards. 

Over the past few years, there has been an increasing adoption of unified communications (UC) as the number of different platforms and methods to communicate continues to grow. As such, workplaces are progressively adopting smarter or activity based working that allows professionals to telecommute and interact with each other from virtually anywhere.

While this is highly beneficial, employees are facing communication mode overload. So how do we tame the communications chaos and help maximise performance?

Identify the various communication environments and needs within your workplace The first step is to identify the various needs of your workers as it’s essential to tailor the solution to their work profile and habits. 

Mobility comes in many forms: the ability to communicate whenever and wherever you are, the ability communicate within and around the office and the ability to communicate while commuting to and from work. Once you identify these within your workplace, you are able to begin planning your UC strategy.

Match the appropriate solution/device to the user When looking at all these environments, each user will require a different solution. For example, someone who works within an office and uses a desk phone will need a different audio end point solution than someone who travels frequently and uses a mobile. Someone who works from home and uses a laptop for video conferencing and collaboration will also need a different solution. 

Selecting the relevant solutions for your workers is the next step to achieving enhanced collaboration and individual contribution.

Simplicity is the key to acceptance Simplicity is the most critical aspect to get the most out of people in today’s increasingly mobile workforce. The key here is to have a simple solution for your workers no matter what communications device they are using. If they find the solution difficult to use, they will abandon it.

One way is to use an audio end point like a headset that will actually pair and integrate with their multiple solutions. They may have multiple phones and irrespective of which phone rings, should only need to press one button on their headset to answer any of those devices. This is particularly important for road warriors who are in and out of cars, offices and hotels. The easier the solution is, the greater the adoption will be and therefore the level of productivity benefits will rise.

Work today is no longer about where you are but what you are doing. You need to tailor the solution to the user's work and professional life, to enable them to communicate wherever and to whoever they wish in the simplest way. As a result, you will attain greater collaboration and productivity benefits from the increasingly mobile workforce.  

Graeme Gherbaz is ANZ managing director of Plantronics, a global leader in audio communications for businesses and consumers.

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