Working from home has presented several challenges for people across the country throughout this year, many of whom will be working regularly at home for the first time in their career.
With a recent report revealing that 82% of company leaders are planning to allow employees to work remotely in some way, making sure you have a reliable home setup is more important than ever.
One of the most challenging aspects of working away from an office is making phone calls to colleagues, suppliers and customers. Whether it is an issue with the microphone, background noise from others in the house, or poor connection, phone calls from home are not always easy.
There are many ways you can overcome these issues to make the experience of working from home better for both your employee’s and customer’s experience. The easiest way for you to do this is to identify which issues are being faced and tackle them individually.
Intermittent or Weak Internet Connection
Internet-based phone calls allow for office phone numbers to be used by those working remotely, providing a more seamless experience for customers contacting a company.
However, this type of phone call can be resource-intensive on a home internet connection when coupled with a laptop also being used for work. An individual’s home connectivity may not be able to handle this intensity of traffic, especially if others in the same household are accessing online resources.
Therefore, it is important for you to consider upgrading internet connection packages to allow for effective phone calls to be made whilst working from home.
Poor Microphone Quality
If a phone call is made with a poor-quality microphone, it can be difficult for callers to understand what is being said, particularly if they are hard of hearing. This causes frustration for both parties and reduces the efficiency of the call by having it last longer than necessary.
To overcome this, it is best to use a headset with a built-in microphone. Using the built-in speakers and microphone of a laptop causes phone echoing which is distracting for the other participant in the call, but with a headset, this is not an issue. Furthermore, a headset frees up hands for taking notes during a call, rather than having to hold a mobile phone to the ear.
Household Background Noise
It is common for those working from home to also have others in the house for all or part of the workday. Whether partners are working from home, students studying or children playing, this can pose a risk of distraction whilst working.
Therefore, it is important to set boundaries with those in the house about moving between rooms and respecting privacy during working hours. Discuss with all involved so everyone can agree on a set of rules depending on your situation. This reduces the risk of embarrassing interruptions and background noise during phone calls.
Having a strong posture is important for a wide variety of reasons, whether working from home or elsewhere. These reasons are not limited to: reduced tension in the back and neck; increased lung capacity; improved energy levels.
These factors can improve the comfort of an individual who has to be seated at a desk for an extended period, and the benefits are also reflected by how their voice sounds when speaking on the phone.
To improve posture and comfort while working from home, it is best to be seated on a sturdy upright chair with a cushion for comfort if necessary. Secondly, the keyboard should be at a comfortable natural height where there is not a stretch up or down to reach the keys. Finally, it is best to elevate the computer screen to eye level to reduce neck and back strain. It is also best to take regular short breaks away from your desk to stretch.
“82% of company leaders are planning to allow employees to work remotely in some way” – Gartner
Hosted phone systems such as 8×8 offer a range of tools which make taking calls remotely seamless. By accessing your office phone number from the desktop or mobile app, your contacts will be able to make and receive calls from you as though there is no change of location.
In addition to this, 8×8 allows for calls to be made within 47 countries with high definition, secure voice channels. Call recording can be utilised for call quality monitoring and data presented in reports or exported to a linked CRM, as well as allowing colleagues to integrate Google or Microsoft Teams.
If you are struggling with team meetings while working remotely, why not try audio or video conferencing with up to 50 participants? Share your screen and get instant, high-definition feedback from your team.
Ensuring you and your team can make professional, high-quality phone calls to colleagues, customers and suppliers is essential. Supporting your team by providing them with the necessary resources to work efficiently not only benefits the individual, but the business as a whole.
Want to find out more about how technologies can aid your colleagues while working at home or in the office? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 0344 326 2150 to speak to one of our advisors.