At Evolving Web, we're committed to sharing our expertise and insights so that you can remain productive while working remotely.
Here are some things you can consider doing—and examples of how we've been doing them—to help your clients, your teams, and your community.
Adapt Your Offering
If you haven't had the chance to yet, take some time with your team to reflect upon the different ways in which the current global situation has affected your clients' needs.
If you're a clothing retailer who's gone from having a physical storefront to selling 100% online, have you thought about updating your exchange policy to accommodate shoppers who'd rather try before they buy, but can't anymore? If you're a healthcare provider, have you considered adding remote options to your list of resources?
More likely than not, whether you do business with the Fortune 500 crowd or directly with consumers, your audience's needs and priorities have shifted due to the current context. Be sure to adapt what you have to offer—and the messaging you use to promote it—accordingly.
At Evolving Web, we design and develop large-scale web projects, and had to rethink the ways we do business in order to accommodate these changing times. Since the COVID-19 crisis began, we helped two organizations go through major digital transformations despite the scope of the launch having been significantly impacted by the virus.
Sollio Cooperative Group Digital Rebranding
One example is our recent digital rebranding of Sollio Cooperative Group—originally named La Coop Fédérée—a major leader in the Canadian agriculture industry with 50 cooperatives, 3 divisions, and more than 122,000 members.
The Evolving Web team helped the Group digitally adapt its new Sollio branding across desktop, tablet, and mobile channels, enabling a seamless online experience for its corporate and intranet users.
We migrated Sollio's intranet onto Drupal and introduced features to improve collaboration and user management, such as personalized homepages, a publication scheduler, the ability to comment on internal events, and improved global search. These improvements make daily workflows more productive (especially as teams are forced to work remotely) and allow Sollio to pursue the development of agribusiness practices and the improvement of global well-being with greater clarity and ease.
Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation Rebranding
Another project we completed recently despite the lockdown situation was reimagining the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation's digital presence. By redesigning their site from A to Z, we helped the Foundation attract more members that align with its mission thanks to a more modern and intuitive UI design and well-constructed information architecture.
Give Back to the Community
Helping your community will benefit your business well beyond the initial PR boost. No matter how you choose to give back, do it sincerely, and your audience will remember for a long time. It'll also make you feel great!
At Evolving Web, we've made some commitments to give back to the Drupal community:
- Through our #DrupalCares campaign, which aims to raise funds for the Drupal Association to help it weather the COVID-19 crisis, we've given back to the Drupal community.
- Our Scholarship program gives individuals and organizations in need access to free Drupal and web development training.
We've seen incredibly positive results by our actions, and encourage you to assist in any way they can. Every gesture, small or large, makes a difference.
Produce Useful Content
Stay connected with your clients and community by publishing content that your audiences will find useful while working remotely. To inspire you, here are a few examples of what we've been putting out during lockdown:
- As more businesses and customers move online and new accessibility compliance laws get rolled out, we created a free "Building a More Inclusive Drupal Website" eBook to help organizations improve their digital accessibility and make their Drupal website an inclusive place for everyone.
- We started offering monthly Drupal tips and tricks to subscribers via our Learn Drupal newsletter.
- We're launching new training courses, such as the Drupal 9 course, to help people build their Drupal knowledge base.
- We're putting out more blog content, such as web development tutorials, to help businesses prepare for more time spent online.
- We launched a series of free video tutorials on a variety of web development topics so people can learn at home and on their own time.
Rethink Your Workflow
Here's how you can help your own business thrive as a remote organization. Remember, adapting takes time. Let this guide act as a blueprint and use it to build a process that gradually meets all your needs—a process that's unique to your organization.
- Digitize processes to make remote work and onboarding new employees/collaborators easier.
- Use tools that make collaboration seamless:
- We use tools like Miro to conduct UX workshops, and the feedback has been positive.
- Integrate Slack with Google Cal to automatically set a status when you're in a meeting, so people will know at a glance if you're around.
- Ensure secure collaboration (e.g. GoToMeeting, direct phone calls, team Slack channels, password-protected sensitive project links).
- Document the steps ahead and congratulate each other on a job well done (it's the little things that boost team morale!).
- Plan ahead (e.g. We conduct end-of-week resource planning meetings so our team has a plan of action for the week ahead and everyone knows what's expected of them).
- Consider investing in training to enhance your digital expertise:
- It's a great time to plug into Evolving Web's live online training.
- Look into government-subsidized training programs in your area.
- Keep communication open and stay connected (e.g. Weekly check-in meetings, GoToMeeting, Zoom, etc.). Check-ins are a great way to build trust and get a sense of what often slips through the cracks in a busy workplace. Come prepared with questions and make sure you turn on video for better engagement.
- Be open and transparent about your own setbacks as well as your ongoing capabilities.
- Clearly discuss project expectations and timelines.
- Approach difficult situations with humility.
- Keep building customer relationships.
- Follow up with each other and consider playing collaborative games such as Drawasarus or taking a virtual coffee break.
- Consider taking a walk together from a distance—being in nature boosts happiness!
- Take this opportunity to rethink your business and develop a future plan of action. Evaluate the big picture. Don't just think about how to survive COVID-19. Where do you want to be two or five years from now? Prioritize efforts today for the future.
- Remain optimistic.
- Create a psychologically safe environment where feedback is welcomed. Conduct anonymous feedback surveys, create virtual white boards using Miro to facilitate feedback and collaborate with clients to make sure everyone's voices are heard.
Reimagining Ways of Working
We continue to deliver work seamlessly for our clients and remain optimistic about the future. We conducted meetings that would normally be face-to-face virtually. Instead of cancelling events or training sessions, we moved them online. And we didn't work in isolation. We collaborated and brainstormed over virtual sessions. In fact, it's during challenging times that organizations get stronger!
We hope you find these ideas useful. If you have any specific challenges you would like to discuss, please get in touch. We would be more than happy to assist.