20 Apr 20

It’s a strange time

Everyone's role has changed A LOT.

It’s a strange time for all of us, not least as individuals, families, communities but also our working lives. The tradition of heading off to your workplace and then returning home… that’s gone for now. We’re all in the same boat, all stuck at home. For many, this means you physically can’t do your role and for others it means, as long as we have some internet, we can proceed to some degree.

For us, at Bullet, it’s been a reasonably easy ride. A lot of the team already work remotely. Most of our clients have already engaged with us to help them digitise aspects of their organisation and so they can carry on. Many of our clients are in the health/social care sector so for them they are busier than ever and we are doing all we can to help them mobilise new tools to help with volunteering networks, track vulnerable patient needs and turn face to face offerings into virtual services. It’s nice to be busy and nice to feel like we are making a small difference.

It feels like everyone is saying…
“We’ll all come out better for this pandemic…”
“Innovate or be gone…”
“Adapt and become stronger…”

What I do know though is that it is not plain sailing out there for all. Browsing LinkedIn and other Social Media we are faced with the wall of, often, overly-optimistic, positive people out there… “use this time to develop new skills”, “come out of this stronger”, “pivot, innovate”… there is so much out there and while it motivates many, it can have an adverse effect on others as they face a real challenge, a fight to survive. Employers facing the prospect of furloughing valuable staff, business owners facing financial hardship – it’s a tough time. We are 3 weeks in now and the initial shock, excitement, fear, novelty… it’s wearing off. We are in this for the longer haul now and the problems faced are very real. For many it’s a case of coming out of this still trading. That in itself could be the ultimate goal. People do want to join the “optimistic, positive, motivating” party but they feel out of their depth. It’s not their fault and it’s not a time to judge.

What we do know is that some organisations will be forced to look at how they work. Having to have people “in” the office is suddenly something we can’t simply rely on. And why should we, in this very connected world, we can, and should, enable remote working. As a digital team, it’s easy for us to sit here and embrace this time but we know that some organisations are just not ‘tech’ focussed. Systems to hold data, sharing of information, collaboration are all common things that we can do online now… there are many, many tools out there for each. For people who are immensely good at what they do, digital technology is not their bag. And it’s all too easy for us more digitally minded to think people should be doing x,y or z to carry on.

It's hard to piece together what might help us work more efficiently

Let’s flip this around, imagine if all of a sudden I had my laptop and internet removed from my possession. Suddenly, to survive I had to go out and give financial advice to people face to face… this would not be good news I can tell you. I have no skills there and would not know where to start. It’s no different the other way around. So many businesses and organisations out there are skilled in what they do, IT played a part in their role somewhere I am sure, but it was just something that they had to do at some point. It was not a critical part of their role. Some data had to be logged somewhere no doubt – whether that be in a document, spreadsheet, system. Now, suddenly these people are having to use technology as a core part of their role – whether that be more time on said system, virtual calls/meetings, emails, online marketing.

My wife is a prime example here, as an NHS employee within the children’s therapies team, she went from meeting children and jotting up notes into a terrible system once a day… to suddenly having to spend all day on said terrible system and using spreadsheets that were hosted in her office where multiple colleagues were trying to access at the same time. She felt useless, she cried A LOT in that first week or so – it was not why she signed up for the NHS. There was no support from management as they were as clueless to it all as the staff. This will be a common scenario out there. Fortunately, my wife has now been redeployed to the front line and she’s back doing what she does best – caring for people :-). Others don’t get that choice.

All is not lost though, it’s a journey we can all embrace, let the optimists and motivators shout from the rooftops, and you can concentrate on what you CAN do:

  • Don’t panic and don’t be afraid. Digital Technology is a scary place on the surface – fast paced and ever-changing. It’s ok to be daunted.
  • Concentrate on evolution not revolution. What small improvements to your organisation’s processes can you make using digital tools?
  • Engage your team in this process, many minds are better than one. The end users are where the ultimate efficiencies can be made if you get this right.
  • Take stock, look at what you currently use and your current workflows. Where are the quick wins?
  • Financially plan for these improvements but understand the real savings will be over a longer period of time. Don’t get too focussed on the upfront costs. And always incorporate savings in your long term finance planning on spend.

We, at Bullet Digital Solutions, don’t profess to be experts in all things digital. We do understand how web-based technologies can revolutionise processes. We do speak in plain english and we love nothing more than making a real difference. If you’d like an honest chat with one of us, please get in touch. If nothing else we can help you work out where or how technology could improve your processes. We could even do it over a Zoom video call 😉

“Slowness to change usually means fear of the new.”

Philip Crosby

Contact us for a chat

We can help discuss what might work for you

Let's Chat