How hybrid working has changed the face of business forever
Many of us will now be familiar with the phrase ‘working from home’. The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated and, in most cases, forced employers to accept that working from home is now part of the way their employees engage with their workload. This recent development has brought about a boom in hybrid working. Read on to find out more about the benefits of hybrid working and how it has changed the way businesses operate.
Hybrid working and the pandemic
Throughout the pandemic many employers were faced with two distinct options. These were to adopt remote working and face the challenges that working from home can bring, or to furlough staff where necessary. However, as the furlough scheme drew to an end on 30 September 2021 employers are putting plans in place to allow employees to continue with hybrid working arrangements. Such an agreement is where the team member works part of their week at the company’s central office location, and part of the week from home.
What are the benefits of hybrid working arrangements
A huge benefit to this new way of working is that our clients are seeing a large upturn in staff morale as a result of this increased flexibility. In fact, studies suggest that 57% of remote workers feel their productivity increases with working from home, something we can vouch for from our team here at Kirkwood Wilson Accountants!
Working from home has placed more emphasis on technology, with working in the cloud now being at the forefront of business owners’ thoughts. Many businesses have operated for a long time with internal servers holding everything that is dear to the company information-wise.
How Xero can help with hybrid working
You might be familiar with Sage and the historical rigors of backing up your company’s information at the office, storing it on a memory stick and then transporting it home to continue processing data. Working from home makes this already lengthy process far more difficult but you can feel safe in the knowledge that Xero was designed exactly for this.
Xero allows your internal bookkeeper to log in remotely using a web browser, at work or at home, picking up exactly where they left off. There’s no need to back up, just log in and carry on. This is why digital accounting software, such as Xero, has had such a positive impact on business operations during the pandemic.
Another complementary piece of software which ties in well with Xero is Dext. It allows you to take photos of invoices that can be stored in the cloud within Xero for forever and a day – meaning you will never run the risk of losing a paper trail. It’s ideal where a team member is in the office and the bookkeeper is at home. The team member can take the photos required and within minutes the invoice appears in Dext, ready to be synchronised with Xero.
One obvious downside to this more flexible way of working is accountability in terms of your employee’s time. How exactly do you know that they’ve completed their allotted hours for the week? Whilst a huge emphasis is placed on trust in this situation, it’s always nice to be sure where you stand when employees are at home.
Deputy is another Xero-integrated app, which allows your team to ‘clock in’ when they start their day and ‘clock out’ when they’re done. The employee downloads an app to their phone and you get all the reporting functionality you need to help you keep control of when and where your team is working.
Integrate digital accounting to support hybrid working in your business.
If anything we’ve mentioned above ticks a box for you, please get in touch with our friendly team on 01704 546000. We’ll be happy to get your bookkeeper set up on Xero so that they can start processing your information wherever they are. Alternatively, we’d love to give you a quote and to discuss the benefits of outsourcing your bookkeeping services to ourselves.