With the Covid-19 emergency, it has become necessary for many companies to activate the smart working mode. In this article, we explain what it is and how it works
What is Smart Working:
Smart Working is a new managerial philosophy based on giving people back flexibility and autonomy in choosing spaces, times and tools to be used in the face of greater responsibility on the results.
How Smart Working works:
Smart Working is a new way of working that allows a better balance between quality of life and individual productivity. Therefore also the result of wise use of digital innovation to support strategic approaches that focus on integration and collaboration between people, in particular, and between organizations. In all this technology plays a key role, because when we talk about Digital Transformation in the workplace we also think about the application of advanced technologies to connect people, spaces, objects to business processes, with the aim of increasing productivity, innovate, involve people and workgroups.
Pros and Cons of Smart Working:
- Autonomy: the worker independently manages schedules and commitments. .
- Don’t get lost in traffic: no traffic or crowded buses/trains
- Avoid quarrels and small envies between colleagues: the privilege of working alone, in your own studio, in your own tranquility.
- Flexibility: with smart working you have your own spaces and timing to carry out a specific task, avoiding to respect the times of the ticket.
- Goodbye extra expenses: petrol, public transport tickets, parking, and the like will no longer be a problem.
- Making a career is more difficult: those who work in smart working have fewer career opportunities.
- There is no comparison with colleagues: poor interaction with the work team and they would like to have back those moments when they meet with colleagues, even just for a coffee and chat about the work done.
- Working every day, even on holidays: In smart working, there is complete autonomy of times and days. If you don’t know how to organize, you may find yourself doing nothing on Monday, but being super busy on the weekend to meet deadlines.
- Too many distractions: the working environment is the same as the domestic one. It is difficult to separate the two and above all to carve out moments of true solitude.
- Always be available: not having timetables means that others could call you at any time of the day, or worse than the evening. Saturday and Sunday included.
Collaboration platforms for smart working:
G-Suite: G-Suite is a suite of software tools and productivity and collaboration tools. It includes Gmail (for e-mail), Google Drive (the cloud service for storing content and synchronizing it online), Google Hangouts (the system that offers, thanks to Meet, the possibility of online video conferencing, but also messaging instant and Voice over IP), Google Calendar and Docs (free programs to prepare text files, spreadsheets and so on).
Cisco Webex Meetings: It is the platform that allows you to conduct online meetings and video conferences. Not only that, but this solution also allows interaction between those attending the meeting thanks to the fact that it allows the sharing of various types of content, from texts to audio/video. In other words, the teams have a solution that allows them to have everything they need, having the guarantee of being able to count on enterprise-level data security.
Microsoft Teams: The Redmond house offers a smart working platform for unified communication and collaboration that combines chats, video conferences but also application integration and file storage. In practice, the Office 365 collaboration hub allows you to work by promoting maximum engagement from wherever you are operating.
Slack: the software for business collaboration designed to send messages instantly, uses specifically dedicated channels and can be integrated with productivity tools. Within the platform it is in fact possible to use Google Drive, Trello, GitHub, Google Calendar and many other popular and used applications.
Trello: It is a management software in Kanban style (the Kanban method, aimed at avoiding overlap between the work of the various employees, starts from the assumption that the processes are carried out from downstream to upstream and each activity carried out only when there is really need) and allows each user to create their own data sheet indicating the activities to deal with, exchange it with others, etc.
Working in smart working with a VPN:
VPNs or Virtual private networks, help to circumvent the geographical restrictions imposed but, above all, to keep web browsing private and consequently they are increasingly crucial in a period where hundreds of thousands of workers are forced to access corporate networks remotely, perhaps limited by restrictive firewalls.
One software for this purpose is OpenVPN, an open-source system available for every device and operating system.
Smart Working how to control workers:
Companies can proceed with the control of the performance of smart workers, respecting certain rules and regulations. The legislation states that the employer has the right and duty to monitor the correct work of employees, all in compliance with articles 2, 3 and 4 of the Workers’ Statute.
The employer has the right and also the duty to check the correct work of workers and also of smart workers. However, the Workers’ Statute must be respected, therefore the checks must be targeted and carried out critically:
- They must concern the company assets supplied to the employee, such as the computer and company e-mail, without violating the employee’s privacy;
- Before any professional relationship, the employer is obliged to inform the worker about the prohibition on using company work tools for personal purposes, as these could be subject to checks;
- For smart working, it must be remembered that in the work agreement stipulated between employer and employee, the control procedures to which the smart worker could be subject must be contained. Furthermore, any disciplinary sanctions are also stipulated in this agreement.
The employer can make checks to verify specific hypotheses of offenses.
The basis for a good job in flexible mode is to have a good organization. If done professionally, it could be a way of working that can also be used in the future.