(eBook) How’s Your Work-Life Balance?

Everyone has their own reasons for wanting to work-from-home.

For some people it is because they can’t hold down a normal 9 to 5 office job, for others it is because they prefer to work from home. There is no such thing as a ‘typical’ homeworker.

At SensĂ©e, we count amongst our numbers ….. working mums, carers for elderly relatives, people who live with a disability, others who live in remote rural areas, and people who simply prefer the convenience and benefits of homeworking.

In this guide we give 20 tips to help you get a better work-life
balance regardless of your reasons for homeworking. Here are a few of them:

1. Work the hours that suit
2. Ensure your IT equipment is up to scratch
3. Communication is vital to combat isolation so make sure you stay in touch!
4. Get into a regular daily routine
5. Keep distractions to a minimum
6. Find yourself a dedicated workspace

To read the rest of our 20 tips, please view our Work-Life Balance eBook

SensĂ©e supports Maggie’s Cancer Care Centre

SensĂ©e was pleased to support the fantastic work of Maggie’s Cancer Care Centre at Forth Valley Royal Hospital near Falkirk, Scotland as part of its sponsorship of the recent 2021 Leaders In Service Summit.

The Summit was  held on 12 May and organised by Rutz Consulting, a leading operational excellence consultancy within the contact centre industry.

Monies raised at the event will go towards a patient’s full day cancer treatment at the Centre.

Maggie’s is a charity providing free cancer support and information in centres across the UK and online.

_Leaders in Service_LIVE WEBINAR SoMe image 1 sponsors

(Webinar) A Hybrid Hub and Spoke Model or 100% Work-from-Home?

– Hybrid home/office models compared –

19th May 2021, 12.00 till 12.45PM (BST)

In this webinar, CX advisor Peter Ryan will be joined by work-from-home (WFH) specialists Sensée to discuss the merits and pitfalls of various hybrid home/office options for post lockdown working.

These include:

  • The 100% WFH + 100% Office model: Where an employee either works @home or from the office.
  • The Part Time Home/ Part Time Office model: Where an employee works some days @home and some days from the office.
  • The Hybrid Hub and Spoke model: Where an employee works (at least some days) from a smaller satellite office rather than their employer’s main office.

How do you decide what option will work best for your organisation? Who will work best from home, and who from the office? How do you treat @home and office workers consistently and fairly?

Peter will be joined by Mark Walton (CEO) and Rob Smale (CXO and Director Consultancy Services) at Sensée, who will lend their expertise and experience to the debate.

During an extended Q&A session, attendees will have the opportunity to discuss their most burning work-from-home and hybrid working issues

Register for the webinar

(Free eBook) How we can successfully implement hybrid working at scale

This eBook follows a Working Mums virtual roundtable on 27th April on the subject “How we can successfully implement hybrid working at scale”.  The event was sponsored by SensĂ©e.

The roundtable featured HR and operational professionals from: Axis, AWE plc, British Transport Police, Financial Services Compensation Service, FDM Group, Flexibility.co.uk, Human Tissue Authority, John Lewis Partnership, L&Q, Odeon Cinemas Group, Sensée, SMS plc, St Albans City Council, Starling Bank, Taylor Wimpey, Transport for London and Verizon Media.

The eBook features Top 20 takeaways.

Here are 10 of those takeaways:

  1. Develop a hybrid working mindset
  2. Don’t import office systems to a remote landscape
  3. Start with tasks and what can be done better
  4. Keep everything dynamic and avoid rigid processes
  5. Design the work and then the workplace
  6. Question traditional views about how things work
  7. Think about different forms of flexibility for all your employees, not just those who can work remotely to avoid a sense of ‘them and us’
  8. Consider building an online collaborative digital workspace where everyone can see who is available and what they are doing
  9. Think of everyone being equally remote
  10. Consider dynamic or working on shared documents instead of meetings and think about the purpose of meetings

To discover the other 10 takeaways, download our free eBook

LiveDesk named ‘Remote Team Communication and Collaboration’ innovation of the year

SensĂ©e is delighted to announce that its LiveDeskℱ Digital Workplace Creation Tool was named Remote Team Communication & Collaboration innovation of the year at the 2021 National Innovation Awards. The winners were announced at a virtual gala event on 11th May.

About LiveDesk

LiveDesks are user customisable Digital Workplaces for communications and collaboration. They unify home and office workers on the same work mission, ensuring everyone is on the same page, by having access to the same information, knowledge, care and support wherever they work from.

LiveDesks are easy to create and manage. Managers have a range of LiveDesk ‘pods’ at their disposal to build tailored workspaces best suited to their needs and work mission, including features such as:

  • Intelligent Chat: enabling advisers to quickly get help from team members, subject matter experts and virtual floorwalkers, tracking Q&A trends.
  • Bulletins & Alerts: keeping advisors updated on major service issues, ensuring everyone is on the beat (and thereby removing reliance on email).
  • Mood & Engagement Pulse: tracking engagement of users across home and office.
  • Social Spaces: enabling private chat rooms for breaks and socialising for engagement.
  • Digital Workplace Dashboards: tracking users frequency, complexity and trends of questions and knowledge needs to have clear capability flightpaths.
  • Teams / Meet / Zoom Facilitation: helping users organise and manage sessions etc. with webcams, voice and screen-sharing.

LiveDesks are always-on but only open during work hours and when managers (key holders) are logged in. They effectively level the hybrid office operating field.

LiveDesk is part of Sensée Cloudworks, a technology ecosystem for hybrid workplaces that comprises unique and innovative homeworking solutions for remote recruitment & onboarding, resource scheduling, communications & collaboration, and security/compliance.

About the National Innovation Awards 2021

The theme for 2021 was ‘technology innovation that improves Work From Home capability, productivity and experience’.

The judges received over 300 submissions. Other 2021 Awards winners were: Noetica & Avoira, Intradiem, Blue Prism, NICE inContact and Medallia.

Jon Snow, Chairman of Directors Club United Kingdom and Convenor of Judges for the 2021 Awards, commented: “Working from home or anywhere is the operational legacy of the COVID-19 pandemic. These 2021 awards set out to highlight the technology developers who are making the distributed workforce not only possible but high performing. One reason the UK National Innovation Awards are respected so widely, is the way they are judged. All our judges are senior business leaders from the organisations that would benefit from the technology innovations being judged. All categories are judged on the quality of the business outcomes that the innovations deliver.”

“We are a 100% WFH business and have been designing, creating and managing hybrid workplaces with our partners since our humble beginnings 17 years ago” said Steve Mosser, CEO and CIO, Cloudworks. “The last 12 months have been the most significant in our history. We’ve had the opportunity to work with many of the UK’s top private and public sector organisations, helping them understand and embrace the opportunities that homeworking can deliver. The adoption of purpose-built technology solutions is absolutely key to work-from-home being established as a viable long-term option for employees and organisations. We are delighted that LiveDesk has been recognised by contact centre industry leaders at these Awards.”

What Will An ‘Acceptable Professional’ Eventually Look Like When Working-From-Home?

2020 was a challenge, even for those who didn’t face a healthcare emergency. For many people it not only involved an adjustment to working from home, but also a dramatic shift in social norms and values. Zoom has become a verb in the past year and virtual happy hours have been an unlikely respite from the crisis.

But what about 2021? Picture the situation, you’re trying to impress a new client, or you are on a review call with your boss, or even a job interview. But now that you are working from home (WFH) you are struggling to come across as the professional you want to be seen as.

Maybe your broadband keeps cutting in and out or your cat keeps walking in front of the camera? Your dog is barking because there is a delivery at the front door, or your kids are home-schooling and creating a lot more noise than studying kids should really be creating. Is your presentation affecting your chances of that new job or new contract?

These are unprecedented times. Values have been changing quickly, just look at how unusual it is to see anyone wearing a tie today. Everyone is aware of the difficulties of working from home, especially for those who have been suddenly forced into this situation by the pandemic.

But this will not always be the case. It is now more than a year since most office-based professionals needed to move into a WFH environment. The noisy kids and rogue cats were easily tolerated in May 2020, but by May 2021 everyone has had a long period to adjust.

As we exit the lockdowns many people will return to their office. Some will choose to continue in a WFH environment and some will be asked by their company to stay at home. There will be a change in attitude as some normality returns.

If you are migrating from the office to a permanent WFH environment then I doubt that people will always be so forgiving in future. It is no longer an emergency situation or something forced upon unwilling employees. If you are choosing to remain at home then you need to start considering what does an acceptable professional WFH environment really look like?

For important meetings, clients will not expect to see people in hoodies, at kitchen tables, with pets and poor connectivity. The flexibility and casualness that we all experienced during the midst of the pandemic will start to dissolve as we all have a choice to project a more professional image.

As WFH becomes more of a choice than a necessity, and companies break down the barriers between office-based and WFH employees, I believe that expectations of WFH professionalism will unquestionably increase. And while it’s unlikely that companies will issue a rule book, WFH employees might want to review:

  • What they wear
  • Their video background
  • Background noise
  • Timekeeping
  • Tone of communication
  • Connectivity
  • Privacy
  • Health and safety
  • Security
  • Communications equipment

It’s great news that so many people are being vaccinated now and 2021 holds the promise of some normality. For those who choose to remain at home, just take a moment to think about how to project yourself because (hopefully) this crisis should now be in the past.