Empowering the hybrid workforce with the right technologies

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Fluorescent lights flicker to life, meeting rooms begin to fill up, and an ensemble of keyboards start to click in unison once again. Meanwhile, the kitchen table remains full of briefing documents, webcams and full laundry baskets, while local baristas watch their tables fill up with laptops for hours on end while a single slice of toast and small coffee are nursed.

This is office life in 2021 Australia. This is the hybrid workspace.

While working remotely existed long before the pandemic, it was COVID-19 that drove the concept mainstream, and now it’s here to stay. Twitter recently announced that they will enable their teams to continue working from home forever if they so choose. Facebook has announced they’ll spend the next five years focusing on hiring people that are not in Silicon Valley and New York to reduce headcount and real estate costs.

In a recent interview with The Australian Financial Review, Deloitte Australia’s human capital leader Pip Dexter spoke to a “global groundswell” for a sea change in the way people work post-COVID-19, saying “I don’t see us snapping back to the old ways of working” as leaders realise how productive their teams can be when working remotely.

However, Dexter is also weary of the challenges that come with this transition, expressing that 2021 will be “a year of experimentation and learning” for organisations as they “reimagine what the new world of work will look like and how to make it better than before”.

One key element Dexter speaks to is the need for enterprises to invest in infrastructure and technologies that facilitate productive remote working and collaboration. For some businesses this will be more of an uphill battle than others.

Collaborative software like Microsoft Teams allow teams to stay connected and productive while working remotely. But as many have experienced over the past twelve months, trying to run these apps on an ancient laptop balanced precariously on your ironing board results in a cavalcade of productivity roadblocks, and organisations need to set up appropriate remote working solutions.

This means facilitating things like reliable internet connections, enterprise-grade cybersecurity, and providing the right devices. These devices could be as non-descript as a wireless mouse or as major as a business-issued laptop.

Another important consideration is audio and video solutions, which are integral to effective communication and productive workflow. Typically, your standard issue computer won’t provide the best audio experience, and certainly isn’t engineered to block out environmental sounds. Trying to hear someone through a laptop’s dust filled internal microphone while they sit in a busy café or the dog barks outside their window is a frustrating and productivity killing experience.

As an audio specialist, Jabra understands these pain points and specifically designs its enterprise suite of products around them, mitigating environmental factors that hinder productivity and clear communication.

Solutions like advanced noise-cancelling microphones enable superior sounding calls, even when the neighbour’s baby is crying. Headphones are built with varying noise cancelling technologies to aid concentration and productivity. Their entire audio-tech range is specifically engineered with ergonomics in mind, ensuring they can be worn all day long.

Jabra’s products are also compatible with all leading collaboration and conference tools such as Google Workspace and Microsoft Teams, to ensure teams can effectively collaborate from wherever they choose.

It’s a brave new (hybrid) world we are entering, and empowering staff with the right technologies will ensure organisations can continue to work productively and communicate properly, no matter where they choose to work from.

Check out Jabra’s professional ranges of headsets, speakerphones and audio-tech here.

Copyright © 2021 IDG Communications, Inc.