Flexibility has been towards the top of the business agenda for many years now and this will continue to be the case as companies strive to be as agile as possible.
Of course, the key reason for this is cost. With businesses coming under ever tighter cost constraints, it is vital to keep waste to a minimum and ensure processes are working as smoothly and efficiently as possible.
But being flexible needs to be at the heart of everything an organisation does if it is to be a success, so how does a company know where to get started?
Why flexibility is important
The economic recovery in the UK is starting to gather pace, but it is mostly centred in London and the south-east of England, so companies in other parts of the country may feel as though they are being left behind.
Many are still struggling to cope with the after effects of the global financial crash, with budgets shrinking all the time, which means costs are going to continue to be cut.
Flexibility is proven to be one of the best ways organisations in all types of industries are able to reduce the amount of money they are spending – and the best thing about it is companies can quickly scale up their operations if they are flexible. This means they will be in a great position to make the most of the economic recovery when it moves up a gear or two.
A good place to begin when implementing flexibility in a business is in the cloud, which has been one of the IT industry’s biggest success stories over the last few years.
The explosion in internet reliance has led to ever more innovative solutions and cloud storage is now a reality many companies are making the most of.
Storing data in the cloud is a highly cost-effective option for a lot of businesses, who can vastly cut the amount of money they spend on data storage by using the cloud instead. This is also a very flexible way to operate a company, as cloud storage can quickly and easily be scaled up, meaning an organisation only ever needs to be paying for the amount of storage it needs.
However, companies need to keep a close eye on IT security if they do choose to embrace the cloud, as this is one of the areas hackers are increasingly looking to target.
Another of the big IT trends of the 21st century has been the rise of teleconferencing, which has revolutionised the way a lot of us work as there is less need to be in the office nowadays.
Being able to stay in touch with colleagues and clients wherever you are in the world is now a very attractive way of doing business for a lot of organisations and it is likely this trend will be embraced even more in the coming years.
Technology such as Google Hangouts has made it easier than ever to hold meetings and workshops across various locations and it will be fascinating to see how companies adapt to this in the near future.
A huge amount of cash can be saved by organisations that make the most of what teleconferencing has to offer, as they are able to cut the cost of travelling to meetings, which is not just quantified in terms of the petrol used or the price of train travel, but also the amount of time it takes out of the working day.
The flexibility of teleconferencing is one of the reasons it has been such a big success story in the world of IT in the last few years.
While printing may not be the most obvious area where businesses can step up their flexibility a level or two, this is actually a part of the company that is rife for improvements.
Many offices currently run various different devices – from printers and scanners to fax machines and copiers – which can be a massive drain on resources. As well as taking up a lot of space in the office, more important than ever due to the cost pressures firms are working with, having so many machines on all day can add a vast amount of money to the company energy bill.
Buying A3 colour printers from OKI can be a great way for companies to become more flexible, as these machines can do a wide range of jobs for the firm and therefore help them to cut outsourcing to other printers by bringing work in house.