Technology changes fast, making it difficult to know what’s what when implementing office technologies to improve business processes.
It’s important to understand the impact that putting the right solutions in place can have for your business.
Cheadle Hulme based San-iT share their Expert Opinion on the latest technology, apps and services that will improve your business processes and save time and money.
If your phone bill is bigger than you’d like, Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) is a smart way to reduce your outgoings using cloud services. Replacing your old phone system with VOIP means you can make much cheaper calls over the internet both nationally and internationally.
VOIP is also far more flexible than a traditional phone line. Because it’s accessed via an online account, it’s with you wherever you go. And if your device has a webcam, you can also make video calls for a more personal or engaging conversation.
Designed to bring organisations closer together through improved collaboration, SharePoint is a cloud-based content management and intranet portal. With today’s more mobile workforce, where employees need to access databases and documents on the go, SharePoint is a necessity not a luxury.
By having the right information, data and documentation at their fingertips, your employees are supported to provide right-first-time customer service. SharePoint also presents staff with a central information repository to find and access the latest organisational news and communications to keep everyone up to date and pulling in the same direction.
The best ideas often happen when two people with different perspectives get together and chew the fat. Whether they’re sharing existing solutions or developing new, innovative ones, Yammer is the place that makes it all possible.
Thought of as Twitter for business, Yammer helps organisations of all shapes and sizes be better at communicating. Whether that’s to foster a sense of community, promote key business messages, reinforce culture or share existing solutions, it all relies on communication.
Yammer is designed to speed up information exchange and remove the barriers that prevent it from happening. All of which improves productivity and generates return on investment.
Leading businesses recognise the value that people with different experiences and perspectives bring. But getting them to work together can be challenging, particularly when they work in different departments, locations or countries.
Microsoft Teams provides a cloud services platform where people from different generations and cultures can come together in a more purposeful way. By helping ideas to flow freely, sharing solutions and common goals, Teams helps businesses come together, all without leaving the office. This single point of contact can revolutionise meetings and reduce your travel spend too.
Every business has repetitive tasks that take time and resources away from more important activities. With documents and systems requiring much of the information that exists elsewhere, Microsoft Flow is a piece of software designed to take the tedium out of tasks.
From simple repetitive chores, like saving email attachments to your OneDrive, to more complex activities like tracking your working hours and location, Flow does these things for you with a single click.
It doesn’t buy gifts or do your laundry just yet, but with a full range of learning documents available, you’ll soon figure out how to automate a good chunk of your working life.
Office 365 Email
Part of the Office 365 suite of productivity tools, 365 Email exploits cloud services by hosting email online instead of a physical server. This means you can work from any device anywhere in the world as long as you have internet access.
Complete with online diary and contacts, 365 Email provides added flexibility over server-based email. Add a new contact to your contacts list using your mobile phone then log in to your laptop to find the details are ready to go so you can send them an email.
As with contact details, changes to your calendar are made in real-time so amendments to your plans can be updated and reflected instantly. The ability to share your calendar and this real-time update feature makes diary management a dream.
Hardware As A Service
Moore’s Law states that computer chip processing power doubles every two years. Which means buying hardware and eking it out for as long as possible is likely to put your business behind the competition.
Instead, SMEs are taking the opportunity to lease the latest hardware so their employees can work on super-speedy, cutting edge machines.
No more figuring out what to do with obsolete computers; simply give them back to your leasing company once the new set has been delivered. With proactive service models, any technical problems will be sorted out quickly delivering high levels of uptime and low levels of frustration.
Information can be a help or it can be a hindrance, particularly when you’re drowning in data or you aren’t sure what’s most relevant.
Microsoft Delve works by continuously collecting and analysing signals that you and your colleagues send when you work in Office 365. These are used to predict what information will be of most use to you. When you search in Delve for a particular term, the system provides relevant items for you to review.
The more you use Office 365, the more intuitive the results and the more time you’ll save hunting around for documents.
Skype for Business
If you’ve used Skype in your personal life you’ll be familiar with the look and feel of the enterprise level version. But Skype for Business comes with important added benefits like:
- increased security
- the capacity to host up to 250 people on a single call
- integration with your Office 365 apps
- instant messaging
- full online video conference facility with the ability to present slides
One feature worthy of a special mention is the screen share technology. Not only can you see the mouse point to a particular cell on a spreadsheet or feature in a design, but you can swap who has control of the screen. Not only does this aid communication and ease problem solving but it’s much quicker and saves time and money too.
Single Device Sign On
If you have in-house IT support, their time would be better spent moving projects forwards rather than dealing with password reset queries. Single sign-on removes the need for staff to remember multiple passwords making it more likely they’ll sign in right first time.
While signing in to one system might only take a few seconds, signing in to multiple systems repeatedly throughout the day can mount up. Three minutes a day, five days a week, 260 days each year totals 65 hours a year spent logging in. Multiply that by your headcount and you’ve got a significant potential productivity saving.
Business productivity solutions aid communication, support problem solving and help your team pull together in the right direction. Investing in the right technology is a sure-fire way to support your people to do their best work and deliver the best outcomes for you business.
Expert Opinion provided by SAN IT – Stockport
Image : Alex Kotliarskyi