Sionic Mobile: How Our Tech Company Adapted During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Companies of all sizes are closing or transitioning during these trying times. Employers are being forced to take creative actions to keep their businesses going.

Is working remote in response to the COVID-19 pandemic an option for all businesses? Unfortunately, it’s not, especially for our brave, essential services providers. For those that do have the option, take advantage of it; it’s necessary.

After careful consideration, our CEO decided to switch the company’s operations to remote. The safety and well-being of our employees is paramount. Plus, we want to be a part of the solution to end this pandemic.

For the average company, this is no small task or one to take for granted. Sionic Mobile’s ever-evolving strategies allowed for a smooth transition during the global crisis. Here’s our story.

Sionic Mobile’s Strategic Shift to Google Cloud

Hindsight is 20/20, so the saying goes, right? In our case, there were no regrets. The Company underwent a lengthy shift from local servers to Google Cloud services. This change last year has proven critical since the COVID-19 crisis set in. Google Cloud has provided employees the connectivity to improve the completion of tasks.

Sionic Mobile switches to Google Cloud services
Sionic Mobile switches to Google Cloud services

What are some advantages we discovered using Google Cloud from a business perspective?

Google Cloud helps our company to function at 100 percent while being remote. Hangout Meets, Chat, Drive, and Google Projects allow employees to be flexible and connected.

A central documentation system is key for a company working remote. Documents and projects are all located on Google Drive. Our employees can discuss projects by video conference and interact via Chat daily. We can also share documents with Drive and access any needed files using Google Cloud.

You may ask, why is this special or unique? Well, we say, the transition to Google Cloud has increased productivity and efficiency. It has been a central aspect of improved workability for our staff.

Sionic Mobile’s Flexibility

We’re maintaining a continuous focus on delivering solutions for current and potential partners. For safety, we canceled all in-person meetings and rescheduled them as web meetings. Sionic Mobile not only ensures it meets all partner needs, but also the needs of our employees.

COVID-19 affects individuals on both a professional and personal level. Working from home is challenging on its own. But many professionals are at home with children out of school. For some, their workday has doubled in tasks and responsibility. Regular business hours are usually focused on work. Now, professionals are taking on the role of caregiver, teacher, and more.

Sionic Mobile employees taking on multiple roles when working from home
Sionic Mobile employees taking on multiple roles when working from home

Sionic Mobile understands these demands. We’ve had strict rules around working from home in the past. For this, we allowed employees with children that may be out of school during the pandemic to work from home. This helped take some of the stress and pressure off finding daycare or other solutions for the kids.

We finally opted to let everyone work from home. Meeting times still remain the same, and deliverable deadlines remain intact. But there are things our employees need to take care of at home during this situation. This gives them the latitude to secure their homes and families.

This type of flexibility during this crisis is one of the many strategies we utilized.

Relax and Keep Morale High

Every company has concerns about how to keep their employees happy and working right now. Coronavirus outbreaks are causing uncertainty and anxiety among working professionals around the globe. So, what do you do to maintain morale?

Companies recognize the importance of maintaining their workforce and have begun relaxing policies. Daycare and school closings are interrupting the normal routine of families. They must adjust, adapt and manage in a whole new way.

Employers should be understanding and flexible to maintain their employees as they navigate. Sionic Mobile is a small company, so it’s critical to keep that notion top of mind. Forbes outlines this in a recent article:

3 Ways to Keep Employee Morale Up During the Coronavirus Outbreak

No matter the company size or type, employee morale is the engine that drives the day-to-day. We work hard, especially now, to keep everyone informed, focused and engaged to keep our team happy.

Sionic Mobile keeping company morale high during COVID-19 pandemic
Sionic Mobile keeping company morale high during COVID-19 pandemic

Staying Connected During Mandatory “Stay at Home”

Going from a fast-paced work environment to a home working environment can be tough. Interacting with colleagues daily has a positive effect your mood and attitude. Our Company is following all guidelines set in place by the CDC and city of Atlanta. And, our CEO has taken critical steps to keep our employees in positive spirits.

First, social distancing. It has become more critical than ever before, and our nation’s health depends on it. It’s vital to stay connected but do it in the safest way possible. Our employees began the practice almost immediately after health officials advised it. Google Chat is the perfect solution to staying connected during the workday.

Sionic Mobile practicing and suggesting social distancing
Sionic Mobile practicing and suggesting social distancing

Next, social interaction. This is an important contributor to good health and longevity. Studies have shown that social interaction is critical for good mental health. They’ve also shown that little or no social interaction can carry many health issues. This recent article from Science Magazine provides great insight on both:

Social distancing prevents infections, but it can have unintended consequences

Our social gatherings via web are a great way to stay connected yet distanced. We implemented this practice as opposed to traditional meetings. Virtual group debriefing sessions are efficient and meetings with clients are smooth. On Fridays, we end the day with a virtual Happy Hour to connect even more and discuss the work week.

Sionic Mobile social gatherings via remote web meetings
Sionic Mobile social gatherings via remote web meetings

Virtual connectivity is essential for employees who work remote.

Preservation for Perseverance

A small company must be agile and able to adapt to change and pivots. That means an astute managing of assets, employees, and finances. Spending during a time like this requires evaluation through a different lens.

So, what do you do? Preserve.

Discretionary spending and budgets get adjusted. Things like employee benefits and well-being are uber important. But that doesn’t mean it’s not business as usual. Prioritizing expenses that create new business and keep current business going matter, too.

Sionic Mobile prioritizing expenses and streamlining operations
Sionic Mobile prioritizing expenses and streamlining operations

GeekWire provides some interesting insight on ways for startups to survive during COVID-19:

8 tips: How startups can survive the COVID-19 economic crisis

Sionic’s approach is twofold: take care of our employees and streamline operations. It’s important that we keep our employees and avoid layoffs. Everything matters and garners accountability. Time and work efficiency, and utilizing available, current technology all come into play. Block and tackle are the name of the game.

Our story isn’t perfect, but it works for us. We hope that something we’ve said or done inspires you and your business to keep going. It’s not easy, but together, we will persevere. After all, we’re in this together.

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