Work Hard (Remotely), Play Harder
The revolution of the traditional office space by remote working and Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) schemes has been dominating the business media. So it’s refreshing to see that the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) has not forgotten the benefits remote telehealth technologies can bring to the public sector too. A new report by the CBI has found that telehealth technologies could save the NHS up to £240 million a year.
But this comes as no surprise – we’ve already seen some forward-thinking NHS trusts around the country putting this into action. Six Cumbria and Lancashire NHS trusts already use a Telestroke network, a never been done before project which is expected to save the region up to £6.6 million in social care costs. This means specialist stroke doctors can examine, diagnose and treat patients remotely using HD video conferencing. Already, 263 Telestroke patient assessments have been carried out and 40 more patients a year are expected to recover because of this. Through this innovation, the trusts are not only cutting costs but are more importantly, giving people back their lives. You can find out more about the Telestroke project in my previous blog here.
But remote working isn’t just valuable to the NHS. We’ve also seen remote working practises help other public sector organisations too. A good example of this is Hampshire Fire and Rescue Services, which has already implemented mobile technology into its stations. This enables fire safety officers to more quickly and accurately maintain a “risk map” by feeding back information about the location of specific dangers. Keeping a step ahead is vital – missing one detail could mean the difference between life and death. Hampshire Fire and Rescue also use video conferencing to dial into meetings no matter where they are. With communication at their fingertips at all times, HFRS has been able to cut the costs of travel and carbon emissions for unnecessary journeys. Through the introduction of mobile technology in stations, the organisation not only takes advantage of communicating from remote locations but is also taking advantage of brand-new, empowering ways of working.
This goes to show that the public sector can be and is just as tech-savvy as the private sector. With a high-speed connection and the right policies in place, employees can work from virtually anywhere. Our recent research found that 72 per cent of employees in the UK believe that face-to-face meetings will soon be a thing of the past. With the huge cost savings and improvements in service quality that remote working can bring to public sector businesses plagued by budget cuts – this is no bad thing.