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The COVID-19 outbreak has changed the way we live, work and socialise. As industries were brought to a standstill by the restrictions imposed in response to the pandemic, public and private sector organisations sought to overcome the obstacles.
In an attempt to halt the spread of coronavirus, workplaces and public spaces were shut down almost overnight. With little notice and virtually no time to prepare, innovative managers and executives turned to technology for a solution.

Remote Working Increases in Response to COVID-19

While members of staff were unable to travel into work, technology brought their working environment to them. From behind laptops, smartphones and tablets, the UK workforce continued to operate, albeit in a very different way than it usually would.

Although individuals have often campaigned for more flexibility in the workplace, remote working had not become mainstream at the start of 2020. As lockdown restrictions were introduced, however, business change was essential. Of course, it was only via technology that the public sector could continue to function and deliver critical services during this time of national crisis.

While some organisations had a certain level of network support in place, others had minimal architecture to support remote working on a national scale. With impressive speed, the public sector sought to install and implement new systems, programs and software to ensure its workforce could operate from remote locations.

Free corona coronavirus mask illustration

Pixabay – CCO Licence

Embracing a Distributed Workforce

Traditionally, work-from-home arrangements have been offered on an individual basis. An existing member of staff may have asked for flexible working arrangements due to a change in their personal circumstances, for example.

In today’s climate, however, companies and public sector organisations are seeing the benefits that a distributed workforce can offer. Remote workers can operate from any locations without a drop in efficiency or productivity. Furthermore, a distributed workforce doesn’t require a central workplace, which represents a major reduction in expenditure for employers. What’s more, hiring remote employees ensures organisations can hire the best candidates, without the need for costly relocation packages or incentives.

Many firms across the private and public sectors have already confirmed their intention to facilitate remote working in the future, even as lockdown restrictions are relaxed. To achieve this, they’re adopting new technologies and introducing innovative policies to safeguard employees, clients and customers. From cloud computing and remote logins to shadow IT policies and Zero Trust guidelines, there is a myriad of ways organisations can secure a distributed workforce.

What Does the Future Hold?

Recent reports suggest that both employees and employers are reluctant to return to pre-COVID working environments and conditions. As people have spent more time at home and organisations have seen the benefits of remote working, many are keen to build on the changes that have been imposed thus far. While there’s no doubt that the coronavirus pandemic has forever changed the way we operate, it’s technology that has been the driving force, enabler and facilitator when it comes to changing the way we live and work

 

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