As we rapidly approach the end of this year of turmoil, I decided to look at the work-related things that have changed during this horrendous pandemic. It goes without saying that people’s safety has been the biggest concern but putting that aside I decided to look at the effect that the last twelve months has had on our business practices.
- Video Calls
To say I have not been an advocate of video calling would be a massive understatement. I have avoided the sterile interactions that I felt it created and, to some extent, that feeling still applies. The one certainty though is that we would have emerged in a considerably worse situation without having access to them, and I have now established the correct camera angle, background, and laptop volume to ensure that the interaction is now a more pleasant experience.
- 5-Year Planning
If you haven’t had to rip up or at least dramatically amend your 5-year projection then I salute you. We have always prided ourselves on being quick reacting and our business model was designed to allow us to be nimble and adaptable to any circumstances. However, no-one could have predicted a National Lockdown and the months of restrictions that have followed, but we found that the planning and thought that we put into our projections and forecasts allowed us to to quickly and confidently make the difficult decisions that the situation created. The plan itself may well have been tossed aside and thrown in the bin but the positive ideas and aims remain valid even now.
- Online Training
I have done a lot of training courses and webinars and feel ready to tackle new projects when we emerge from the current restrictions. Under normal circumstances I did not seem to have the time available for development but this is now something that I will be looking to factor into my work timetable.
- New Offices
In many aspects of life, you tend to stay with what is familiar and comfortable. Our old offices were adequate and I had got used to the view of the brick wall through the window and the excitement of the will it, won’t it work heating system. Somehow, we managed to action an office move during the first lockdown and the difference is spectacular. Much more comfortable and I am sure it will help our productivity going forwards. The main issue now is that we are in second floor offices that overlook Blackpool Airport and already I am finding myself distracted by helicopter and jets. I might need to invest in some window blinds for when the airport gets busier in 2021.
- Online Recruitment Processes
Like most companies we have had to shift everything to an online model. We now easily conduct video interviews and adapt to the numerous issues this creates. We have had to contend with internet problems, appointment scheduling errors, being unable to access various formats, dogs, cats, and children creating havoc, and computers crashing, but I think our processes have emerged stronger and more adaptable. Whatever the future holds for us I am sure that we have enhanced our skills and are now able to offer our customers and engineers more options.
The main thing we have learned is the importance of looking after each other and I hope that is something that will continue long into the future. It has been a year that started with a feeling of impending doom and has taken us through many twists and turns to get us to this point. It seems like there is good reason for optimism now and an expectation that we can start to move forward safely next year.
WJF Technical Support would like to wish all our customers, engineers, and friends a Happy New Year and we look forward to working with you all again in 2021.