| December 13, 2021

By Lakshmi Raj, Co-founder and co-CEO at Replicon

3 ways tech can foster a successful (and relaxing) remote holiday season

Navigating through the holiday workload with a remote and hybrid workforce need not be difficult.

With the holiday season around the corner, organizations are preparing to streamline their seasonal workforce and avoid nightmares due to inefficient operations. However, without a proper plan, the pressure on workers to deliver with tight deadlines will be high, leading to employee burnout. A report earlier this year found burnout is up 9% as 52% of employees have experienced the feeling. Burnout will be especially apparent as businesses continue to face talent shortages and employees continue to struggle to achieve a work-life balance when working remotely.

As most of the workforce will be away from work during the holiday season, project managers have to deal with a severe resource crunch, delayed communication and approvals, late payment issues, and more. But, navigating through the holiday workload with a remote and hybrid workforce while completing projects on budget and on time need not be this difficult. With the right technology, aligning work and meeting project requirements can be a breeze even when working remotely.

Here are three ways tech can enable project-based organizations and professional services leaders to reduce pressure during the remote holiday season:

Establish transparency

Maintaining transparency across organization operations is nearly impossible without a solution that is constantly working to improve the coordination of organization-wide and global processes. Project and time management software gives you the visibility required to prioritize tasks and set expectations before your remote team members go on their holiday. For instance, a project management software can help managers to understand the amount of work remaining along with potential bottlenecks – helping them prioritize tasks based on accurate and up-to-date data.

With a clear idea of the work completed and work remaining, managers can plan workload for available resources and communicate the plan with stakeholders well in advance. Also, a single system tracking employee leaves and availability allows managers to manage employee schedules better. This saves everyone from last-minute confusion and any awkward confrontations with stakeholders. When you have already approved leaves for your team members, it becomes more important to identify urgent deliverables and request your team members to squeeze in more hours to meet deadlines and budgets.

Maximize workforce utilization

Irrespective of whether your team is working remotely or in-office, effective resource management is one of the biggest challenges during the holiday season. Project managers constantly feel the pressure of delivering tasks, managing clients, and optimizing utilization and revenue from every available resource. When managing multiple projects with shared resources, it’s crucial to take stock of the pending tasks and assign or reassign based on the best available resource. But how can you do this when your resources and projects sit on two different solutions (or even worse–spreadsheets) that don’t talk to each other.

This is where AI-powered resource management software comes in. The software automatically gathers and analyzes project and resource data across an enterprise to suggest the best resource for every project within a few minutes. This helps project and resource managers align demand to available resources and prepare for re-skilling or hiring. Also, since the software can analyze data across a global resource pool in a few seconds, managers can go beyond traditional limitations to plan more effectively and ensure project profitability during the holiday season.

Streamline operations with automatic data analysis

As enterprises prepare for the holiday season, business leaders need a holistic view of the ongoing projects, available resources, and limitations on finances. However, with distributed data, managers don’t have an easy way to gather all the information and analyze it to streamline holiday operations. Look for a solution that does all the heavy lifting by automating data analysis and delivering live recommendations on the best possible choices for leaders to decide.

A solution that operates on a common shared data platform with 100% accurate and consistent data helps break down data silos, helping managers understand the entire business and operate in harmony across groups. When managers can automatically get updates on projects and resources, and sense the true pulse of the business, they can solve project-related problems even before they manifest.

Make this holiday season stress-free

Technology is a huge enabler of the remote revolution. When you pick the right tools, you stand the benefit of optimizing your workforce for all seasons, including the holidays. When your team members have spent most of their last year in lockdown, it only helps to leverage technology as much as possible to ease the pressure and give them their personal time.

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