Here's a snippet of an upcoming article of mine to be posted on CIO Update. What fascinated me was the fact that companies as varied as Arch Chemical, Trinus Corporation and Court Square Data Group all maintain hybrid operations, meaning they maintain offices yet allow numbers of employees to work remotely. Some are working from home and others from a small, satellite office. Read on:
The virtual work place is a happening, whether it's a one-person shop based in an office suite, or a multinational corporation where a large percentage of a sales team works out of a home-based office.
Consider Trinus Corporation, an IT services company based in Los Angeles, that builds data integration, data warehousing and business intelligence solutions. Sanjay Kucheria, Trinus president, says of the 200 employees most are based on the west coast, though there are employees on the east coast and in India, mainly working from home or client locations.
Al Schmidt, CIO of Arch Chemical, headquartered in Norwalk, Conn., says the specialty chemical manufacturer has “a global workforce of 3,000 employees” with roughly half located overseas in 20 countries. In fact, he says the majority of their sales organization, both domestic and global, operates from home offices.
At any given time Kent Fernald, vice president of shared services for Court Square Data Group in Springfield, Mass., may be supervising a fifth of the 50 people in his department remotely, whether they are based in home or small rental offices. These are mainly projects managers and some technical staff working for this managed services consulting company that also provides IT solutions for companies in transition
Whether their employees number in the thousands or less than 100, CIOs of all types say they struggle to keep remote workers in the loop, feeling part of the team and struggle to use communication tools like email effectively. “The biggest issue with remote employees is that unless there is a specific project or issue we are dealing with, there is hardly any communication. I think it has worked well with employees who have been with the company for a long period of time, allowing us to understand each other well,” said Kucheria.