Sometimes, we do not realize the full significance of what we are doing until something like COVID-19 hits. This has certainly been the case for Vermillion Power Technologies. As a result of a directive from our management to work remotely in our early days, we have worked with people both in person and remotely since our inception. Yes, we do have face-to-face meetings when we get together in the lab to test products and circuits but, frequently enough, one or more of us are connected remotely. Our team members regularly take test equipment home to allow them to work on some piece of hardware. This has become so routine for us that we don’t think about it. In many cases, it increases our efficiency by requiring less time for commuting and providing more time and space for creativity. During the upheaval caused by COVID-19, this ability to be flexible and easily transfer work from onsite to remote has allowed us to remain an effective, enthusiastic, motivated and socially distant team.
The Right Tools
Over time, we have assembled a suite of tools that enables us to work remotely. Our tools allow us to work on documents simultaneously over a distance, to share and control versions of software and other documents in a secure repository, and to co-ordinate communication, tasks, and upcoming events. Most of our test instruments can output waveforms and data that can be shared in real-time. In some cases, our instruments can be remotely controlled so that lab tests can be run from a remote location.
For some time, we have been using these tools because it makes us more efficient, it allows staff to have more flexible lifestyles, and is part of our company culture. This has allowed a smooth transition to work in the COVID-19 world.
This ability to work from home, or some other remote location whenever it makes sense, makes our team more effective. This is particularly true in times where the team needs to pull together and work very intensely. Product development often goes through phases of intense work with time constraints. Team members are happier and more willing to work through these intense times when they have the flexibility to work from where they are, and to have periods of availability for their home and family life.
How Can we Help?
With the global crisis that COVID-19 is creating, companies need to find ways to allow their workers to maintain social distances by working remotely. We can share our experience with your team and help them to choose tools and processes that will enable efficient teamwork at a distance.