The demand for flexible and remote working options is on the rise. According to Vodafone's research on Smart Working, 77% of SME employees are in favour of remote, flexible or smart working practices but only 9% of SME owners are fully embracing it. In response to this gap, Vodafone and their partner Abodoo, collaborated with the SFA to give small businesses a variety of resources so that they can embrace smart working practices into their business.

So what is Smart Working?
Smart Working is a term used to describe the combination of technology with agile, flexible working arrangements so that employees can work remotely. This can be from home, a co-working space or a hybrid model of part office and part remote working.

In this podcast, Treasa Doran of Vodafone, Vanessa Tierney of Abodoo and Helen Quinn of the SFA talk about Smart Working. It is clear that employees are embracing smart working / flexible working arrangements but how can it benefit the small business owner? This podcasts talks about how Smart Working benefits businesses who embrace it. This ranges from attracting new staff, improving productivity and reducing costs. It can increase the work/life balance of your existing employees and it benefits the environment too. If your business is considering on introducing Smart Working listen in and learn how it can benefit your business and how you can address the challenges it may present.

Potential challenges to Smart Working?
When we asked the respondents in our Grow, Scale, Succeed survey about the challenges to Smart Working, the three main concerns were issues around security and sensitive data, perceptions that it would not suit their business culture and concerns about team communication.

This ranges from resources on keeping your technology secure, information on connectivity and collaboration tools so you remain connected with your teams, where to find your local co-working space right through to a checklist for working remotely and a sample remote working policy.