Productivity has massively improved – thanks to the Cloud


Productivity has massively improved – thanks to the Cloud

A two-year study by Stanford University has confirmed what many already knew: working from home is a productivity booster. What has been less understood is how Cloud has facilitated productivity across WFH and office teams – until now. It’s clear that the key driver and facilitator of improved WFH is the adoption of Cloud apps and infrastructure, but how are Cloud platforms responsible for increased productivity?

In a 2015 report by Microsoft Office 365, Cloud apps were expected to be adopted by 78% of enterprise businesses by 2020. Coronavirus accelerated matters significantly, and now, we live in a truly remote, Cloud-based age of work. Cloud, even in office-based teams, is still able to provide substantial, noticeable productivity gains. Find out how.

IT solutions, simplified

Software tools are one thing – the hardware to run them on is another. Even if you’re computing locally on the latest hardware, you still need somewhere to store all the data you produce. In large organisations, huge scores of data can be generated in a day. Traditionally, storage and archiving (possibly some form of computing and virtualisation, too) was achieved with on-site servers.

Anyone who’s run a server room at a company building (especially one that wasn’t designed to house one) knows how complex they are, how fragile they can be, and how much maintenance they require. Anyone who’s relied on an internal IT infrastructure like this knows how damaging it can be when it goes wrong.

Cloud solutions all but eliminate the hardware, maintenance and frustration of an internal IT infrastructure. By offloading resources to a private Cloud, dedicated hardware running at precise specifications can be procured – managed by an external team whole only job is to keep your Cloud apps running.

This frees your IT team and company resources to focus on high-value tasks, with a boon to productivity. But freeing your IT teams is only the start.

Business teams benefit, too

Cloud apps offer productivity benefits for every team in your business, including Finance and HR, Sales, Marketing – you name it. If there’s work to be done on a computer, Cloud tools can do it better than locally installed software. Here’s why: automation.

Automating workflows and basic tasks frees time and mental pressure from your teams. The result? Happier, more engaged employees, with more time to do what matters in their roles. This is hugely important, and not only for productivity. Satisfaction with work, higher engagement and using your skills to make a difference all add up to a strong workforce and reduced attrition.

That’s not all, though. Cloud apps have the advantage of instant upgrades, usually made at regular intervals. This unlocks more power within the tools your team uses – without additional complexity. That’s because upgrades are usually small and incremental, easing users into new designs or layouts, instead of benign transformational and requiring more training to use.

Think of it this way: when the iPhone launched with iOS installed, it was totally revolutionary. Easy to use, by anyone. Fast forward to today and the capabilities of the platform are lightyears ahead – almost unrecognisable. But each year, the platform updated just a little bit. Small tweaks here and there, occasional redesigns – and a swathe of creeping improvements behind the scenes.

Nobody had to relearn anything – it all just worked. But the capability of the platform has exploded, giving users the power to do more than ever before.

Cloud apps, with their incremental upgrades, work in the same way; they remain intuitive to people who’ve already invested in them, while unlocking even more functionality.

Cloud for collaboration? Remoters, rejoice

Remote isn’t the future – it’s now. And Cloud has levelled performance and accessibility around the world. Whether your teams work in a single office, at global sites or at home, Cloud is a breakthrough for collaboration. Every study we’ve read agrees – and so do the most prominent leaders in business. Collaboration is rocket fuel for high performers – but even when working in the same building, collaboration in software over multiple pieces of hardware is tricky.

With local storage and in-house servers, documents are more than often siloed. Transparency is non-existent. Copies of copies are generated, versions are difficult to track, and sometimes, work gets duplicated many times over. It’s wasteful and frustrating.

But Cloud was made for collaboration.

In Cloud apps, everyone can work at the same time, in real time. Version tracking is simple, with no need for duplication. And transparency runs from the top of the company down.

Anyone can search for files they need, provided they have the right access level. They can always request permission if they don’t – but final control on what’s visible can be set by management.

And therein lies the power of Cloud; your teams can do more, with fewer resources, in less time. Isn’t it time you joined the Cloud, too?

Perform a Cloud migration – with an expert in your team

ClearHub specialises in finding the best Atlassian Cloud migration contractors, to equip your business for hybrid and remote working – and the next stage of your growth. We have access to the world’s most admired Cloud migration contractors.

Want to know more? Get in touch with the ClearHub team today – call +44 (0) 2381 157811 or send your message to

Death to the Office? Hybrid, Remote and the Future of Working Together


Death to the Office? Hybrid, Remote and the Future of Working Together

The office as we once knew it is gone. But is it really dead?

Remote, hybrid and flexible working models are now the norm; 24% of businesses surveyed by the ONS stated that they intended to adopt more home working going forward. In the same study, 85% of workers disclosed their preference for a “hybrid” approach of both home and office working.

It looks like the office – although totally transformed – is here to stay, too.

With a greater demand for hybrid and home working, even among employers, greater flexibility in the workplace can only be a good thing – but will collaborative teams still thrive?

Concerns over collaboration, hard lessons over hardware

The WFH revolution hasn’t been without challenges. While some solo workers, contractors, entrepreneurs and startups are thriving, many people who once held office-based roles are feeling the negative effects of a corporate world without an office.

A study of 3,000 UK remote workers showed that 67% felt disconnected from their colleagues, while half (49%) said this sense of disconnection was having a negative impact on how they viewed their job. The ONS study found that challenges of collaboration were the greatest negative to remote and home working.

A study in Spain found that a third of households considered their remote working spaces inadequate – citing a lack of technology and resources, as well as not having the appropriate environment for their work.

How can this be remedied?

Video conferencing tools, like the now infamous Zoom and Microsoft Teams, are still the best answer to engagement and connection – but they require a cultural shift to be truly effective. Trust and teamwork are now the most important factors to success in the new world of work, where check-ins and feedback are vital to maintaining employee engagement. Honest reviews that focus on positive personal attributes, from managers who know their teams’ strengths and areas for improvement, will guide and engage people, even without face-to-face meetings.

The goal is to foster a positive remote working culture – free of paranoia and the sense of isolation. Inclusivity and giving everyone a turn to speak (in a manner which suits them best) will help bridge the perceived gaps in human interaction.

On the hardware front, cloud solutions, specifically those which integrate deeply with an organisation’s full software suite, are a key investment for businesses embracing the future of work.

Working together on projects in Confluence, a key pillar of the Atlassian stack, gives teams working remotely or in a hybrid setting the greatest possible collaborative environment. Atlassian Cloud migration is a game-changer for collaborative working over many types of hardware. Unlike other collaborative tools like Google Drive and Office 365, Confluence can be modified heavily with HTML and CSS, to suit any kind of workflow.

Confluence Cloud can be run as an app or in-browser, giving everyone in the team the same experience – regardless of the hardware they have – and all work is centrally managed and accessible, not just locally stored.

See also: How to hire Confluence contractors for a custom cloud implementation

But what about the lack of adequate workspaces? That’s where a hybrid model will truly shine – giving teams the flexibility of where they work from, with an option that gives them focus space and in-person collaboration. It also makes working with contractors much more streamlined, giving an opportunity for an excellent onboarding process and face-to-face working while letting them do the best job they can from the environment of their choice.

Best practices for hybrid working offices

Working collaboratively in the cloud solves many of the challenges of remote and hybrid working. But the office space you have – or decide to move to – needs to be optimised for it. Hybrid offices will be used differently from fully-staffed setups, to suit how people now work. 

It’s likely that fewer people will be carrying out solo, high-focus work in the office, but this should still be catered to. What teams now need are more collaborative workspaces, formal meeting spaces and better casual spaces.

One of the best solutions for open-plan environments is to build “sections” suited to different types of work. By clustering desks together, using booths, and arranging furniture or plants into borders, an office space can be optimised for hybrid working.

With dividers, booths and desks, focus spaces can be created where solo work can be carried out by anyone who still needs them. Active collaboration areas, with moveable seating, dividers, whiteboards, large digital screens and supplies, should be positioned further away from focus areas – and if possible, should have acoustic treatment applied to keep noise from travelling.

A space to hold private and confidential meetings is still a must, even with fewer people in the office – so don’t turn the boardroom into a gym just yet!

Last but by no means least, casual lounges, places to eat and recreational areas are vital to maintaining the bonds that make a team great. Take the opportunity to make these as engaging and comfortable as possible.

Hire Atlassian contractors suited to hybrid and remote working

ClearHub helps the world’s best companies hire Atlassian contractors, for custom implementations and cloud migrations – suited to the new ways of working.

Want to know more? Get in touch with the ClearHub team today – call +44 (0) 2381 157811 or send your message to