Session 4A: Working remotelyRichard CraigChief ExecutiveCharity Technology Trust
Session 4A: Working remotely• How the Olympics challenged us to think about continuity of service• How did we prepare?• The opportunity for long term benefit.• What was it like working from home for two weeks?• What has been the legacy of the work?
‘Some people will see theGames as an opportunity towork from home, in invertedcommas.’ ‘We all know that is basically sitting wondering whether to go down to the fridge to hack off that bit of cheese before checking your emails again.’
Continuity of ServiceCTXchange technology donations. Telephone and e-mail processing eligibilityCTPayments credit card, debit card and Direct Debitprocessing. Externally hosted solution, e-mail andtelephone support plus salesCTT Mail web based e-mail marketing platform.Email. Need to be able to answer e-mail andtelephone queries.
Continuity of Service• How can we reduce risk exposure to system failure?• How do we continue to operate if we have no access to the office?• What it we lose permanent access to the office?• How do we ensure all files and documentation (soft and hard) are backed up and secure
Current Best PracticeREPORT ON A SURVEY OF CHARITABLE ORGANISATIONS’ USE OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGYWCIT / CTT / LASA / IT4C 2013
Continuity of Service• Lets ensure we have a robust disaster recovery plan• What failure points can be engineered out• How much can be auto failover?• Trial during the Olympics and close the office for just over 2 weeks
Goals & Objectives• Device agnostic working environment• Normal operations from anywhere in the world• Flexible access route – RDP, Apps, Web• Accessible, secure and backed up data• Promote home and flexible working
May 2012• Planning - How will you get faxes and what about thepost?• Testing and training – Accommodate the way peoplework• Processes must workwhen people cant see eachother• People - Trust your staff but monitor productivity• Cost - Does not have to be expensive to work althoughincreased flexibility can cost• Bandwidth – Good quality internet needed at homeand work
2012 ServicesMicrosoft 365 Exchange, SharePoint and OfficeOnline. Replaced many server based appsDrupal for the ctt.org and ctxchange.org web sites.WYSIWYG content management anywhereSalesForce used to manage inbound sales andsupport enquiries. Master database used for contractmanagement and outbound campaignsctxchange.org back end data managed using webbased civiCRM
The experience• The phone system worked exceptionally well• We had the same access to documents and files from laptops mobile devices as we do from our PCs in the office• We had one team member who lived nearby to walk to the office each day to pick up the mail, scan and email important documents• Remote working means you can fit your work around your life, but if you’re used to a fairly regular routine, this can definitely go awry when you’re away from your desk for two weeks
The experience• Just because our team was working from home, didn’t mean everyone else was. Where possible, we did use Skype for our meetings but we did find for things like brainstorming and discussing new ideas, that we missed actual human interaction• We were all pleased to be back in the office post Olympics. Even those of us that commute a fair distance admitted how happy they were to have personal contact after a two week absence• What we realised, however, is that we while we could be an ‘office free’ organistion, we don’t want to be
Learning PointsIt did leave most of the teamembracing the idea of flexibleworking, rather than completeoffice-free working, as the lack ofhuman interaction during theworking day for two weeks straightproved to be taxing.
Cost of Flexibility• DropBox $9.99 per month x 3 users who needed more than 2Gb free per month• Cisco IP Phones – Negligible hardware costs on the CTXchange programme. Monthly cost about £250 incl calls for 12 people. Twice previous fixed line costs.• Microsoft 365 E1 plan £78 per month for 15 licenses• Software upgrades negligible on the CTXchange programme
Cost of Flexibility• Salesforce – First 10 licenses free for charities remaining heavily discounted. Implementation upwards of £12k• civiCRM – Open source. Most implementation work done by TechSoup• Drupal – Costs similar to other web development tools
Legacy• Hybrid data storage – Server / Sharepoint / Dropbox. All data accessible and secure.• Agnostic operating environment – Apple / Microsoft / Blackberry• PC / Laptop / Tablet / Smartphone• Remote access to office over Remote Desktop Connection• Telephony with fixed phone at home or via Cisco Softphone in PC, mobile or tablet.
Beneifts - Continuity• Flexibility to work when you want where you want• Multiple routes to files and services through tablets and PC’s• Operational files and systems cloud based and secure.• Disaster recovery plan meaning we can be operational without an office
Beneifts – Home Working• The ability to get quiet time for particular tasks away from the office without being completely disengaged• Break from commuting• Increased working hours from some employees when at home• Flexibility to be at home for personal commitments• Reduced costs for some travelling in to London
What is next?• Increased Bandwidth fibre ADSL• More bring your device to work• 3G / 4G – Work anywhere little compromise• Broaden experience – InTune, Google Apps• Take all servers and telephony off site?• Chorus as a web based accounting service?• No fixed network in the office?