Flexible working is a key part of any business, and it’s never more important than during the summer months. If you’re looking for ways to be able to take that holiday but still keep track of what’s going on back at the office, here are our top tips for flexible working this summer:
• Skype – a great way of staying in touch, with free calls back to the office.
• Data Roaming Charges – don’t get caught out! When you’re tethering your phone or just using the apps, it all adds up. Using Wi-Fi in the hotel or coffee shop down the road is the best option. It’s worth noting that some Consumer Email Services that rely on POP/SMTP – such as BT Connect or TalkTalk, may not work from foreign Wi-Fi spots.
• Protect your data – remember to make sure your data is encrypted* and backed-up – especially if you’re leaving your laptop behind in the hotel, or checking it into the hold on a plane. Don’t forget to enable the firewall on your laptop and avoid entering credit card information if you’re online in a public space (to avoid Wi-Fi spoofing).
• File sharing – for those of you already using O365, this is a brilliant way to share and stay connected from anywhere in the world. Within O365, Power BI is a great cloud-based suite of business tools which allows you to view and analyse live dashboards of data (our MD uses this to track the value of incoming work – all we have to do is complete the columns in a spreadsheet and Power BI automatically creates the dashboard).
• Social Media scheduling – using Hootsuite or Buffer is a great way to schedule your social media posts while you’re away.
• Power and charging – take a UK 4-way or 6-way 13-Amp extension lead and compatible adapter for the country you’re visiting. Then you can charge all your devices using the UK chargers, rather than needing a travel adapter for EVERY one.
• Extended Leave of Absence – it might sound obvious, but we always put an ‘Advance Notice of Leave’ in our email footers in the lead-up to our holidays, so that people know that we’ll be away, and can rush through things before we go if they need to. (A great tip that we use for managing your emails when you get back is to apply the 4 D’s: Do it, Date it, Delegate it, Delete it).
• Delegation – our MD delegates everything when he goes on holiday, and doesn’t ask for it back when he returns. It’s a great way to give the rest of us more responsibility and allow us to grow in our jobs.
Most important, though, is to put your feet up, have a glass or two of wine, and relax! Now’s your time to see how your team get on without you.
…And don’t forget to send us a picture of your stress ball holiday too!
* Note that if you do want to go ahead with encryption, it’s essential to have suitable back-up in place, because there’s no way of recovering the data should you lose your login. If you’re a projectfive customer and want to know more about this and how to manage the decryption keys, then give us a call!