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Restrictions – Affecting the way we connect

Restrictions around the movement of people and goods have prompted an increased move to digital engagement, including document sharing and digital signature requirements, which in turn heightens requirements for security awareness.

Post-lock-down, physical business engagement has mostly returned to normal, but in the interest of strengthening business continuity, leaders are investigating areas of the business suitable for digitisation. By digitising previously face-to-face transactions, the business-as-usual processes are less affected should a shutdown re-occur.

During lock-down, the entire nation embraced the use of online meetings, forcefully nudging laggards into the realm of digital natives. As a result, usage rates post-lockdown remain high and more importantly, the perception around user experience has positively increased.

Why not use the momentum of the above positive digital experience to introduce more change. Key areas suitable for digitisation include:

  • Digitised contracts, proposals and sales documents – Removing repetitive and mundane tasks is essential for business success. Applications such as Pandadocs and Proposify facilitate document creation that protects brand integrity, locks down end-to-end efficiency for your team and the proposal process, accelerates your sales cycle by cranking workflow automation, instils consistency and reduces errors.
  • Electronic signatures – Another feature available in applications such as Pandadocs is the ability to electronically sign documentation, from both an internal and client perspective. Electronic signatures use electronic identification methods, such as digital certificates, personalised login and access codes attached to the signer’s identity, and asymmetric encryption to create non-repudiation for sales contracts and signed business documents.  Many electronic signature solutions are also flexible enough to be integrated with businesses operating in a space where confidentiality requirements are a necessity, such as legal, financial, and health sectors. However, because e-signing technology is so universal, nearly every company, regardless of size or industry, can benefit from adopting electronic signatures.
  • Document sharing and collaborationMicrosoft Teams is a collaborative tool that encourages employees to think more holistically when working on projects within a group setting. Teams Channels support users by helping change behaviours around content sharing. By avoiding off-line interactions where possible, all team members can autonomously work in the project for a faster, more transparent and collaborative approach.
  • Digital Presentations – As discussed previously, lock-down forcefully nudged laggards into the realm of digital natives with online meeting rates soaring. Improvements to online meeting apps have risen, with Microsoft alone releasing a volume of Teams enhancements this year to support the user experience. Online presentations have the potential to offer an even more personalised approach than traditional face-to-face engagements. A new approach to Teams meetings ensures engagement prior, during and after your session enhance the outcome.
  • Security Awareness – With increased collaboration and remotely located teams, security awareness becomes more necessary than ever before. Data is your company’s biggest asset, so consider how you are protecting yours?  In an increasingly connected world, your sensitive IP, financial and customer data is at higher risk than ever. Loss of data can impact revenue, productivity and cause irreversible damage to your reputation.  Cyber-security is about more than technology. The security awareness of your people is just as, if not more, important than your systems. From insecure passwords to risky online behaviour and irresponsible use of sensitive information, the behaviour of your team can leave you exposed. That’s why Cyber Security Awareness Programs creating a proactive security culture in your business will help to keep you protected.

By Steve Hurst | 15 July 2020

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