A Cloud-Based Solution to Keeping Your Remote Workforce Connected

In times of disruption, manufacturers must find ways to maintain business continuity without significant downtime. Learn more about the remote workforce management solution that can help teams and stakeholders connect to the same processes, workflows and datasets in real time.

The recent global health crisis brought the global supply chain to a standstill. To get a sense of the scale of the disruption, consider that:

  • Over 40 percent of the Fortune Global 500 firms have a significant presence in China,1
  • More than 75 percent of businesses have ‘one or more direct or Tier 1’ suppliers from China, and
  • About 94 percent of the Fortune 1000 companies have Tier 2 suppliers there.2

As a result of propagated disruption, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) have estimated that global FDI shrank by 15 percent. Supply chain partners are also unable to fulfill orders in time — or at all — during the crisis; the reduction in material components and delivery levels will reverberate throughout the supply chain for the foreseeable future.

In turn, manufacturers now face the following significant challenges when it comes to effectively managing remote employees:

  • Ensuring a stable, consistent transfer of knowledge between disparate teams and stakeholders
  • Providing on-site teams with real-time support and expertise
  • Effectively monitoring production health, performance and insights without being on-site

With large-scale remote working becoming the new operational reality, manufacturers must prepare themselves for a reduction in productivity and innovation while this transition takes place.

Adjusting to a New Working Environment

While some parts of the manufacturing workforce such as designers, engineers and administrative personnel can afford to work from home, others cannot.

For manufacturers with employees working both on-site and remotely, adapting to a hybridized workforce is already proving to be a major logistical challenge, with approximately 53 percent of manufacturers having no prior experience working remotely or from home.3

One of the main risks of implementing remote management solutions includes a reduced sense of community, social interaction, knowledge transfer and shared learning.

Manufacturers that have not yet digitalized their operations risk having expertise and knowledge siloed within certain individuals — and if that individual becomes unavailable, all of that knowledge is rendered inaccessible. Furthermore, employees working remotely find it frustrating that they cannot share information as easily as before.

Without an integrated digital planning platform to facilitate digital continuity between the different stakeholders, this disconnect exposes flaws and gaps in the collaborative process between different teams and stakeholders.

The Agility of a Cloud-Based Platform

The importance of operational resiliency in the face of future disruptions has now come to the forefront. This can be seen in the steps taken by manufacturers to manage a remote workforce, especially in the early days of the global health crisis, as well as looking forward to new realities in the workplace.

The importance of operational resiliency in the face of future disruptions has now come to the forefront. This can be seen in the steps taken by manufacturers to manage a remote workforce, especially in the early days of the global health crisis, as well as looking forward to new realities in the workplace.

As supply chains became bottlenecked and production lines shut down worldwide, manufacturers quickly reevaluated standard business processes and workflows. Employees were now split between on-site and off-site teams, necessitating process and workflow validation ahead of time to streamline development and reduce any potential downtime between the design and production stages.

This is where a cloud-based platform comes into play to help manufacturers seamlessly digitalize their manufacturing environment in a flexible and scalable way, enabling employees and stakeholders to collaborate within an integrated virtual environment.

Teams can share, review, annotate and validate designs from wherever they are located, thanks to an always-accessible 3D cloud-based repository to secure customer data storage for their remote employees.

On-site employees can stay as connected and as secure as possible with a remote monitoring solution when carrying out essential work. Meanwhile, off-site teams can effectively conduct their tasks and collaborate with those teams while remote.

Such a cloud-based solution can be quickly deployed for use by all stakeholders without the need for significant IT investment or infrastructure — it even negates the need for on-site maintenance.

Manufacturers can also take a highly detailed and methodological examination of how all business practices are executed, leading to more operational solutions, increased innovation and ideation, and capitalized opportunities in every meeting.

A New Way of Collaboration

Even though remote working shifts to become the new normal, there will always be a need for experts and employees on the factory floor and production lines.

With a cloud-based platform approach, manufacturers can find new ways to ensure that remote workers collaborate effectively with their on-site colleagues, with no compromise on knowledge sharing, collaboration, data transfer and operational downtime.

This approach is already helping automobile startup Canoo reinvent the definition of what a personal vehicle can be.4 Through this platform, over 150 team members are able to share databases and project files with global project stakeholders without the need for on-site servers or additional networking infrastructure.

Canoo is one of many forward-thinking companies that have successfully leveraged a cloud-based solution to keeping their remote workforce connected so that their global operations can be more resilient to disruptions. Ready to discover how you, too, can easily transition to the best solution for business continuity? Get our exclusive ebook today to find out.

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