Many companies have been working through their business continuity plan and assessing how to approach potential impacts to its operations and its people in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Beyond this, what will happen to collaboration and culture within a business with a (potentially sudden) shift from primarily office working to remote working?

Businesses have considered video collaboration solutions in the past looking to reduce travel costs or to increase collaboration between remote locations. However, we are now faced with a situation where travel could be impractical or impossible and video becomes the only way to effectively collaborate.

Given the potential scale of business impact that could occur, we wanted to share our thoughts on options to consider when employees aren’t physically able to meet with clients, or come into the office, as a result from travel restrictions.

From a technology perspective, having a solid strategy for remote access is key. This really is the foundation upon which your BCP will sit. Businesses need to consider:

  • Hardware: If your team use desktop PCs and all of your systems sit behind your firewall, this will dramatically limit the ability to work remotely. A laptop or method to use personal devices remotely is critical to allow you staff to connect from home.
  • Software: A cloud email and collaboration platform (e.g. Microsoft Office 365 or Google G Suite) that will continue to be accessible in a BCP event. For example, if you lost power to your servers, could your staff continue to collaborate effectively?
  • Capacity: Perhaps the most important consideration is capacity. Most businesses size their remote access or virtual private network (VPN) solution to cater for a small percentage of their overall workforce. But what if the whole organisation needed to work from home? Could the existing solution be scaled to cater for this scenario?

Video conferencing can bring a positive outcome to a BCP event

Much like remote work, there are thankfully a wealth of video collaboration platforms to enable face-to-face work between remote parties. At V Logic, we specialise in working with our clients to deploy video collaboration solutions to best fit their needs. We feel that there is no one-size-fits-all solution and prefer to provide consulting advice to determine the best fit. In a business continuity planning context, our view on some of the key factors which should be considered would be:

  1. Which devices will staff use to collaborate over video? What camera/headset solutions might be required to provide the desired quality of video interaction?
  2. How can parties that only have access to connect via audio or phone be included?
  3. Will the focus be on content, face-to-face video or a combination of both?
  4. How will external/third parties participate if required?
  5. How many participants will meetings include?
  6. Will meetings be all parties interacting or one party presenting content?

If video collaboration could play a role in your business continuity planning, feel free to get in touch and we can see how V Logic might be able to assist in reducing or mitigating your risk.