Since the pandemic, remote working has become the new norm and as a result, video has rapidly become a business-critical tool. In the month of March 2020 alone, total video calls in Microsoft Teams grew by over 1,000% while Zoom customer numbers grew by 354% YoY. This shift in the way we communicate has pushed organizations into embracing a video-first culture, along with completely new ways of working. For IT leaders, this means supporting the business by enabling teamwork at a distance and discovering which technology can help boost productivity and collaboration – while keeping employees safe. But before any planning begins, let’s first understand what approach your business will take when transitioning to the next normal.
IT PRIORITIES FOR THE NEXT NORMAL
Next normal strategies will vary from business to business. Some will plan for the majority of employees returning to the office, others will keep staff working remotely, and there are those that will choose a hybrid mixed approach of the two. Whichever route your business takes, it is imperative for you to prioritize employee wellbeing, share work best practices, and ensure the organization has the tools it needs to stay connected. For example, businesses planning for continued work from home face the challenge of keeping employees focused and engaged, despite background noise and disturbances. While businesses planning for the return to the office have the task of equipping meeting rooms with tools to help employees stay productive, while maintaining health and hygiene standards. Once the approach has been defined, your next task is to support your organization’s plan to transition.
MAINTAIN FLEXIBILITY AND CONNECTIVITY
Although communication, collaboration, and customer service delivery must remain consistent, how you help facilitate this through technology will change. Consider what’s working and what therefore stays the same, but also what needs to change. For example, over a third of Logitech’s customers say they’ll need more video-enabled rooms in the office to support the increase in remote employee collaboration. Regardless of meeting room size, equipping these spaces with video capabilities gives employees more flexibility to maintain connectivity and work as a team.
FOCUS ON HEALTH AND HYGIENE
As an IT leader, one of your biggest challenges over the next 12 months and beyond will be transforming the way employees work together in the office. Large meeting spaces may be a thing of the past, as smaller rooms will take over with a focus on new health and hygiene requirements. From meeting room set-up to remote working tools to hot-desk policies, the right solutions are needed to adapt and drive collaboration in a safe way.
INNOVATE, EVOLVE, AND STAY COMPETITIVE
To keep up with rapidly advancing customer demand and an increasingly competitive market, your business must evolve into a safe, collaborative environment. This requires you to embrace new technology to support new ways of working and engaging customers. Room analytics for example uses machine learning to alert IT when people are too close together. While touch-free conferencing enables people to walk into a meeting room and start a conference with colleagues or customers, with just their voice.
“These times we’re living in are as exciting as they are challenging. Already we’re seeing the market adapting, and technology that once sounded futuristic could very soon become an everyday gadget.”
– John Tracey, Head of Sales Enablement – Video Collaboration, Logitech
Regardless of how you transition to the next normal, there is a huge opportunity to embrace a video-first culture and help maintain new, safe, and productive ways of working. In doing so you can ensure employees feel connected and equipped to deliver a standout customer service. One that is personalized, authentic, and human.
Discover more about planning your transition strategy, get top tips on how to support various return to work scenarios, and find out about emerging tech trends in our latest eBook - Maintain, Adapt, Innovate: Transitioning to the Next Normal.
Or download the Playbook - Preparing for Your Next Normal for real-life transition success stories, insights, and a guide to assist you in preparing for your next normal.
 Microsoft blog - Remote work trend report: meetings
 Digital Trends - Look at what the coronavirus pandemic did to Zoom’s bottom line