Flexibility and connectivity for the modern era

How will we work in 2021 and beyond? Well, we'll probably work from home more, and mix remote work with time in the office. We may also expect to have more freedom over when we work, fitting focused periods of productivity around family time and other responsibilities.

And if work can happen anytime and anywhere, we'll also expect it to happen on anything. The number of employees that associate work solely with a desktop computer in their own square metre of office space is falling fast. The new era of work means sending emails from a laptop in the local coffee shop, and video conferencing from a mobile device on the train to a meeting.

Flexibility and connectivity will be the buzzwords of a post-pandemic era. Employees want more choice over their working lives, and businesses that need to recruit the best talent would be well advised to offer it. But flexibility requires connectivity. An effectively flexible workforce needs a communications solution to match its' work anywhere, anytime, on anything' ambitions.


The benefits of BYOD 

Inevitably, all this brings up questions around BYOD (Bring Your Own Device). Quite simply, equipping an entire workforce with the devices they need to work profitably at any time and at any location is a costly undertaking. Businesses are used to supplying staff with a work computer. Adding at least one mobile device to the requirement may be a post-COVID expense too far.

At the same time, workers like using their own personal devices, tablets and mobile phones. They're familiar with them, which has productivity benefits. It also saves them the hassle of carrying around separate devices for work and personal use.

And BYOD has advantages when it comes to communications and collaboration too. Who knows when inspiration will strike? Being able to instantly fire up instant messaging or video conferencing when you might be a long way from a work computer ensures that great ideas always see the light of day.

So in many ways, BYOD is a perfect solution for the new era of work, but it is not without challenges.


Hosted unified communications and BYOD: perfect partners 

Along with the concerns around the security of sensitive data and mobile device management, the biggest challenge of BYOD is one of suitability. In terms of communication and collaboration, a personal mobile device will not be equipped with the kind of business-grade tools and applications that allow workers to be as productive away from the office as they are in it.

Your traditional on-premise communications solution can't help you in this regard either. It was likely designed for a world where employees worked on-site, rather than from back bedrooms, kitchen tables and coffee shops.

By contrast, hosted unified communications (HUC) will give your business the freedom it needs to thrive in the new era of work. HUC from TalkTalk Business is a powerful enterprise communications solution for every business, letting your employees call, chat, conference and collaborate from anywhere, on any device.


Mitel and TalkTalk Business: collaboration by design

Our hosted unified communications solution is driven by Mitel, the leading name in business phone systems. Millions of users across the globe trust Mitel to make their business communications better.

TalkTalk Business HUC includes access to Mitel's robust MiCollab service, a single application for voice, video, messaging, presence, audio conferencing, mobility and team collaboration. And because MiCollab lives in the cloud, users can access company information and tools from any device, wherever there's an internet connection. The application also offers a consistent look and feel across devices and operating systems.

In effect, MiCollab turns any employee’s personal device into a sophisticated business communications system. The Mitel softphone lets employers make and take professional business calls from desktops, smartphones, tablets and laptops. MiCollab's suite of collaboration tools helps teams work together as effectively from home as they do in the office. By integrating with Outlook and Calendar, it means employees always have the information they need at their fingertips, wherever they are.

And it's not just about increased productivity and employee satisfaction. MiCollab helps create flexible businesses too. When you can add users (and their own devices) in a couple of clicks, you can exploit new business opportunities as soon as they appear. Plug and play functionality means that, if you open new offices or locations, MiCollab can ensure your corporate network is up and running in seconds.


More HUC for your buck

On top of all that, employees using their own devices can help you meet the challenges of the new era of work while cutting costs. As we've mentioned, it lets users work from their own devices, creating a potential saving on equipment.

In addition, there are no upfront expenses with cloud-based communications, and call costs are lower than traditional on-premise alternatives. You don't host infrastructure, so there are no ongoing maintenance costs either.

So how will we work in 2021? With HUC from TalkTalk Business, your employers can work where they want, when they want, and on the devices they want. If flexibility is essential, HUC delivers the cost-effective unified communications system your business needs.

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