Ten Recession Beater Tech Top Tips

Organisations have to change the way they work to beat the economic downturn, says Chris de Silva, Managing Director of NEC Philips.

NEC Philips Unified Solutions has announced Ten Top Tips for surviving the economic downturn. With the UK currently in a recession, businesses need to be agile, flexible and responsive to the needs of their customers, and technology can play a critical role in helping them to remain competitive.

Chris de Silva, Managing Director of NEC Philips Unified Solutions, says, “Nearly every business is feeling the pressure of the current climate. Reducing costs and optimising resources are strategies which are becoming more prevalent as organisations fight for survival. In these difficult trading conditions, businesses need to be more flexible in their approach and they need to be prepared to make changes to working practices and business processes if they are to ride out the storm. For those companies that are prepared to embrace cultural change, technology is available today that can help businesses to maximise revenues and streamline their overheads, while also keeping their employees happy and motivated.”

Ten Top Tips from NEC Philips for surviving the economic downturn

1. Hot Desk’ to save office space – using Unified Communications technology, employees have freedom of movement around their working environment whilst still being able to access all of their applications in the same way. There is no longer any reason for staff to be tied to one desk or location in the building which means companies can make better use of the office space they have already got, and potentially consolidate the number of offices required.

2. Let staff work from home – employers can improve staff morale and productivity by helping to reduce the need for them to be office based at all times, meaning employees are able to strike a better work/life balance. By combining Unified Communications with Virtual Desktop Infrastructure technology, staff working remotely can now gain access to all their applications via WIFI or 3G. Security is ensured because information is stored centrally rather than on laptops which can easily be stolen or lost.

3. Reduce your carbon footprint – virtual thin client devices use at most 30% of the power of the PCs they replace, whilst a Virtual Server infrastructure is estimated to use 60-70% less power than existing physical environments. This enables the IT department to support strategic targets on reducing CO2 emissions while at the same time reducing energy costs, space costs and maintenance costs.

4. Go ‘Virtual’ for Meetings – meetings have many purposes: discussion, collaboration, decision-making for example; but they suffer from a number of issues including the need to travel, being deferred due to schedule constraints, running out of time, and not having all relevant information available. Using Virtual Meeting & conferencing technology, you can reduce travelling costs and boost productivity with a very fast ROI. Of course, some meetings will always need to be face-to-face, but surely not all of the time?

5. Make it easy for people to contact you – don’t think that offering people multiple contact details on your business card or email signature makes you more accessible and easier to contact. Why should someone have to guess whether the best way to reach you is via email, mobile, landline or Skype? Unified Communications technology now incorporates Presence information, Intelligent Routing and trusted links which greatly improve communication with customers, partners and colleagues, removing the guesswork currently associated with getting in touch with someone.

6.Reduce desktop IT costs – Virtual Desktop Infrastructure technology lets you cut your desktop IT costs by as much as 50%. In addition, by standardising your desktop builds, you can reduce the management and support costs of these devices. Simplify your infrastructure, and deliver significant efficiencies.

7. Get more out of your infrastructure – If you have been considering improving your IT infrastructure, don’t throw out your entire system; instead make better use of what you have already got. Consider integrating your IT and communications infrastructure. Deliver added functionality, not simply more of the same.

8.Let staff help themselves – employees can become quickly frustrated if they are not able to access the IT applications and systems they need to get their job done. Using Identity Management/self-help password technology, companies can reduce the administrative burden on IT staff, by providing users with access to the right information and the tools they need to be self-sufficient when it comes to day-to-day IT operations.

9.Outsource your IT support – internal IT departments can often spend too much time fire-fighting on a day-to-day basis rather than concentrating on strategic IT issues. Consider outsourcing the management and support of your IT infrastructure to a third party specialist.

10.Empower your employees – help staff to be more productive by deploying automated workflow management tools. Processes can be defined and automated actions created to alert co-workers or managers, request approvals, or initiate further processes. Workflow functionality can be implemented with document management and collaborative applications (including service-oriented Web 2.0 applications) to improve productivity and manage business processes more effectively.