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Back to the office

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Europe, and that includes us, is slowly starting to unfreeze the economy. Society is also, I think, already slowly beginning to return to a different ‘normality’. I think that in a while we will start to return to our workplaces, offices, desks, piles of papers (electronic workflow). At this point I myself asked myself what will change, because surely something in our companies and offices will change 🙂 .

Working remotely is a different way of working, we do not have access (unless we are one of those who have nevertheless opted for (electronic workflow), for example, to documents that are lying around in the company. Nor can we go to accounting to ask if they have an invoice from six months ago for organising an event. Worse still, we can’t even hold our 10th meeting this week in our conference room. How to work – one would like to ask.

Of course, even before the pandemic (I have a feeling it was ages ago), there were ideas for optimisation projects that would be useful in any organisation, could save time and costs, or give more control over a process. However, something more important always came up, some more important topic, a higher priority project.

And then suddenly a coronavirus hits, something that no organisation is likely to have anticipated. And suddenly you find that all these projects within the administration area become a priority.

All the solutions, of course, were already available before the coronavirus. However, there was actually a missing point where organisations and simply employees realised that there was no point in waiting. Going back to the topic of the article what will you change when you come back?

Personal effectiveness

I would definitely start by organising my working time and using tools like ToDo, Google Keep etc. These are tools that organise our to-do’s in an easy and accessible way. It’s almost an electronic workflow, at least of our documents. All applications of this type have their mobile counterparts, so we always have our day “at hand”. If we are working in a team, on a project (but not only), I strongly encourage you to use free (up to a certain point) project management tools:

  1. Trello
  2. Bitrix
  3. Monday

This way, we will always be prepared to work from home and our efficiency will definitely increase.

Optimisation solutions

Next, I would be tempted to implement an electronic workflow and optical character recognition. Building an electronic document archive (invoices, contracts, letters) is invaluable from saving space and money to security issues. A separate topic here is Optical Character Recognition (OCR), whereby we automate the process of entering invoices into the system. We can do this from anywhere. On top of that, we save time and money (up to 50% of the time in the workflow process).

In fact, the icing on the cake will be the administrative robots (RPA), i.e. applications that perform repetitive tasks for humans. They won’t get sick, they don’t have to go to the home office… I encourage accounting offices to look into this topic, because contrary to appearances, implementing a robot, e.g. for cyclical invoicing, does not have to cost more than a medium-quality coffee machine.

I’m curious to see your list of changes upon your return 🙂