The holidays are just around the corner and mark the busiest travel time of the year. For businesses, this means employees may be working anywhere – from airports, in hotels or even at home due to inclement weather. Employers are often tasked with accommodating employees while not losing out on precious business hours. So how do businesses make sure their employees stay connected during this busy travel season? Below are five tips to keep connected.
1. Forward all desk phone calls to other numbers using a cloud-based phone service. Cloud-based phone services enable callers to reach an employee at an alternative number - such as their house or cell phone - if they're planning to travel and won't be at their desks. Employees can also easily access voicemails virtually when working from multiple locations.
2. Use smartphone app options to turn your smartphone into a mobile clone of your desk phone and ensure a unified communication approach throughout the holidays. These apps allow employees to tie directly into their company's hosted PBX service, allowing them to turn their smartphones into a "virtual mobile clone" of their work phone. By using smartphone apps, all outgoing calls that employees make will show as if they're coming from the company's caller ID.
3. Install "soft phone" programs to desktop and laptop computers to make and receive calls remotely. Soft phones are the desktop/laptop computer equivalent to a smartphone app that emulate full phone functionality and allow employees to work remotely via computers. By installing soft phone software, employees can make and receive calls even when they don’t have cellular service as it can be accessed through a reliable Internet connection.
4. Use a cloud PBX service to register your phone at multiple locations so that employees can have more than one desk phone. Whether at home or at work, phones can be set to ring and make calls identically from any location. This is perfect for employees working from home or traveling between two different locations.
5. Set concrete rules for holiday hours. Setting custom business hour rules around the holidays and rotating phone duties between employees can help to ensure fairness across the board, and allows staff equal time split between work duties and family time. It also guarantees that the business is responsive during the holiday season, which can be a busy time of year for calls depending on the industry.
The holidays are a time to be festive and celebrate with family and loved ones, but it is also important to maintain business operability. By ensuring that employees stay connected during this high travel season, businesses can preserve the integrity of their services and operations while alleviating the stresses of staff working remotely.
Happy Holidays and safe travels!
Adam Simpson – CEO, Easy Office Phone
Adam Simpson is the CEO and co-founder of Easy Office Phone where he oversees the creation of new sales channels including a North American Dealer Program, plays a leading role in software development, manages the company’s network infrastructure, and builds dedicated teams of sales, support and engineering staff. Under Simpson’s leadership, Easy Office Phone has grown rapidly and steadily into a highly respected provider of Hosted PBX service to clients throughout Canada and North America since its launch in 2005.
Prior to Easy Office Phone, Simpson entered the Internet startup market as a young, serial entrepreneur at the age of 18, and co-founded web advertising firm Click2Net in 1998. Within two years, Simpson grew the company to 35 employees and $15 million in revenue.
After exiting the business in 2001, Simpson returned to school, earning his MBA and Honours Commerce from McMaster University, all the while pursuing new business ventures across the technology landscape.
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