Working from home is here to stay


Working from home is here to stay

The number of employees who work from home is expected to increase substantially in South Africa following the COVID-19 lockdown.

The COVID-19 pandemic has delivered the final push that was needed for businesses to implement work-from-home strategies.

Working from home have been under discussion within many businesses for some time, but there has been reluctance to roll this idea out due to a combination of fear of the “unknown”, the risk of reducing output and business continuity concerns.

World trends have shown that about 30% of South African businesses will implement some form of remote working policy after the pandemic is over.

The implementation of work-from-home or remote working in many businesses post-lockdown will happen because of the high levels of productivity experienced during the current lockdown.

People that prefer face-to-face engagements with colleagues and clients had a strong resistance to remote working; however, the lockdown has shown South Africa this is not always the case. We believe that after the experience of this lockdown it will become an everyday part of our new way of working and client engagement.

The positives of remote working

The positives outweigh the negatives considerably when it comes to remote working.

Working from home could also alleviate traffic congestion – which reduces the frustration and time constraints of workers.

Work which requires uninterrupted blocks of time are easier to do as a remote worker, as you are less likely to be interrupted compared to working in an office.

Staff happiness levels tend to increase when they are allowed to work from home, this is because they can manage their own time and achieve a better work-life balance.

Possible struggles

There are however also elements of remote working that can prove challenging.

Managing a remote team will require an increased focus on management, reporting, and KPIs in order to ensure productivity is maintained.

For a lot of employees who are not used to this, it can be perceived as micro-management, which in many businesses could create a negative ‘clock watching’ work environment.

The biggest negative of remote working is that it makes it difficult to switch off and take regular breaks, you can easily end up sitting in front of your screen for five straight hours in different meetings – this has an adverse effect on your general health and wellbeing.

Self-discipline and keeping an excellent work balance is of the utmost importance when working from home.

How to prepare for work-from-home increases

The best way to prepare for an increase in work-from-home staff is ensuring you have the right connectivity and systems in place.

High-quality, cloud-based systems should be considered, relating to telephony, video conferencing, CRM, reporting, analytics, and billing. Having the right technologies is of the outmost importance where a business will be implementing remote working.

If an employee sits at a desk at work or home, the digital experience should be the same.

The following is advised to be introduced to work-from-home culture alongside reliable infrastructure:

  1. A dedicated “open door” scheduled time where people can freely reach out and engage without feeling the need to formally schedule an appointment.
  2. Team engagements and interactions, rather than relying purely on one-on-one communications.
  3. Make use of your webcam on a regular basis, as it is healthy to see people’s faces during a meeting.
  4. Support employees by creating a schedule which includes waking up at a set time, getting dressed for work, encouraging regular activities such as exercise, and dedicated time for family.

ICT services are essential – especially during lockdown


ICT services are essential – especially during lockdown

ICT services, have been classified as “essential services” by the President – and confirmed in the regulations issued under section 27(2) of the Disaster Management Act, 2002, on 25 March 2020.

Our government has made it clear that it is an urgent priority to expand and maintain our country’s business sector networks to allow South Africans to work, study and interact online.

In support of this key directive, we assure customers that we have deployed our organisation’s resources towards ensuring our personnel, infrastructure, policies and procedures are in place. We do this in order to continue to support our entire range of ICT services, as we are obliged and mandated to do.

Supporting customers is our priority


We are fully operational, and the following critical customer service departments continue to run:

  • Remote / On-Site support
  • Managed services and advanced customer support desks
  • Network and infrastructure managed & support

Installations and projects continue with as little interruption as possible, subject to the enhanced safety policies we have implemented. Our Finance, Account Management and Sales teams are working remotely and continue to service our customers.

Safety practices to keep us all safe

We are uncompromising in our goal to ensure our new customers are provided with services, and our existing customers remain fully operational. We are also steadfast in ensuring the safety of our team and that of our customers.

To this end we have implemented all the policies as directed by our government and institutions such as the World Health Organization. Including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Equipping all our administrative and support personnel, to work from home, adhere to the lockdown regulations, and continue their essential functions in servicing our customers and business partners.
  • Utilising all technology at our disposal to ensure the efficient operation of our organisation, uninterrupted communication both internally and with our valued stakeholders.
  • Ensuring ongoing levels of hygiene throughout our operation.
  • Educating our field personnel, enforcing required personal hygiene practices, and equipping them with personal protection equipment (PPE) – (masks and hand sanitiser). These practices ensure the safety of our customers and employees when conducting on-site technical work.

Our priority is the continued safety of our customers and staff. We ask that our customers provide us with any relevant feedback at or at 012 663 1515.

Tips for Working Remotely…and Productively


Tips for Working Remotely…and Productively

For those of us lucky enough to be able to keep working during the lock-down, one of the hardest adjustments is adapting to a “work from home” environment. Without much experience in working remotely, it can be difficult to get started on the right track and to build the ideal space in order for us to work productively.

Top Tips for Remote Working

1. Build your home office space

Create a workspace that is quiet, full of natural light and above all, comfortable. Not only is the environment you work in crucial to how productive you will be, but it’s also important to keep a separation between home and work. This might seem silly since you’re working from home. But if you’re using one space for everything, you might be more likely to get distracted by your surroundings and vice versa, find yourself working when you’re supposed to be getting some downtime.

2. Stick to office hours

Especially for the night-owls, it can be tempting to adjust the hours we work to suit our more natural cycle. For those working individually, this may not be a problem. But for those working in teams it’s important to stick to the regular schedule. What’s more, when the office re-opens it will be an easier adjustment to return. Conversely, we’re more likely to work way past close of business. A little overtime isn’t a bad thing, but make sure you don’t overdo it.

3. Use a business communications app

I was lucky enough to be a user of MS Teams and 3CX. So while I may not have done much remote working before, I was already a power user of the system, and had access to everything from the get go – which was a big help! Having the right tools is essential, so if you feel like your team isn’t able to communicate effectively, make sure that your organisation knows that the lack of communications tools is a problem.

4. Structure your day

Make sure you outline and plan each day, just as you would in the office. Not only will this give you a sense of continuity, but it will also help you keep on top of tasks and stay motivated. Use apps like Trello and Asana.

5. Schedule regular team meetings

Team meetings are essential for employees to stay up to date with the latest company news, projects and results. Working from home can isolate us from what our colleagues are working on or how busy they are, so regular catch ups are needed. What’s more, it’s a great way to boost morale and encourage team bonding.

6. Get out and about

This remote working tip applies more to those working from home regularly and not because of the pandemic. But, it’s an important one! Working remotely means that you can work just about anywhere that has an internet connection. Avoid feeling boxed in and head out to work at a cafe or other quiet place.

7. Don’t forget to take a break

Distractions are the number one cause of decreased productivity. That’s why time after time studies have shown that working from home gets better results. But without distractions, we can sometimes forget to stop and take a breather. Make sure to get up every hour for a 5 minute stretch, or to grab a snack or drink.

Working from home takes discipline and organisation, but the benefits can be substantial. Remote working can allow you to work from anywhere, be more productive, and take care of your personal needs more easily without disrupting your work. These working from home tips should help you to get started on the right track and quickly adjust so that you and your company can realise the benefits of remote working.

Working from Home Productively

Working from Home Infographic