It has been three months since India went under lockdown. The country is slowly opening up now. The recent outbreak of the COVID – 19 has caused a tectonic shift in most people’s lives.
WFH is the new norm now, many companies are now willing to extend this facility even after the lockdown is lifted. In our endeavor of bringing our readers views from a wide variety of stakeholders in the industry Medianews4u spoke to Vinay Bhartia, India Head, Lark, is a one suite for all needs, featuring next-generation collaborative tools that enable teams to work together. The platform builds a culture of effective communication by combining a multitude of essential tools in a single interconnected platform, including Chat, Video Conferencing, Live Streaming, Calendar, Documents & Sheets and Cloud storage. All functionalities are deeply integrated into a single app, which is available on Mac, PC, iOS, and Android. Lark is a part of Lark Technologies, a Singapore-incorporated entity with its headquarters in Singapore and offices in India, Japan and USA.
As WFH is the new culture which will be adopted by many companies, how is LARK positioned itself?
As work from home has become the new norm, businesses are struggling to continue operations and ensure business continuity. Therefore, to stay connected and manage day-to-day operations, organizations are using various communication and collaborative tools. Lark as a next-generation communication and collaborative suite acts as a single platform that combines multitude of essential tools in a single interconnected platform. As an affordable suite that enables remote collaboration, Lark is seamless, mobile-friendly, and enjoyable.
It’s free version comes with unlimited video calls (complete with advanced screen sharing and recording functions), 200GB of cloud storage, online collaborative docs and sheets, a smart calendar, a powerful messenger, unlimited third-party app integrations, and customizable attendance/approval workflows. For large companies that have special need for customized customer success service, Lark provides a paid enterprise version as well as value-added services.
What kind of communication tools has LARK developed to help its clients?
Social distancing and work from home has become the new normal to avoid the spread of COVID-19 virus and safeguard individuals. Every organization is facing a challenge to stay connected and manage operations remotely to ensure business continuity in these difficult times. Lark addresses these very specifically and provides features like instant messaging, video conferencing up to 100 people, live streaming, announcements, attendance, approvals, and many more for the entire organization. Lark docs & sheets enable users to add images, videos, presentations, and comments. Also, it offers other important features such as project management tools, 200 GB free cloud space, built in safety and security elements which are helping SMBs and Educational Institutions to support business continuity and stay connected.
While enterprises are using various tools that are available, what Lark does is that through an all in one integrated solution, it helps businesses manage communication, collaboration and office automation which provides continuity.
What are some of the post-lockdown business strategies for clients to bring the business back on track and create demand?
As the lockdown is getting relaxed in a staggered manner, physical distancing will still apply in the post-lockdown period. Businesses are now adopting technology and taking a leap towards digitization. The organizations post-lockdown needs to embrace the concept of ‘phygital’ offices, which will be a hybrid of digital and physical office space. This will become popular due to the gaining prominence of office automation tools to ensure business continuity and cost-effectiveness.
Traditional businesses will also need to evolve and invest in the tech infrastructure and digitization to help them stay agile and expand reach with the additional benefit of being more economical and timesaving. Organizations are already considering an alternate work model where they can cut costs through a complete virtual experience involving collaborative tools. This will become common as most industries will undergo change and shift in working culture. Corporates are more accepting of the remote working options and are considering it as a viable alternative for employees to function remotely wherever necessary.
As a Communication and strategy expert, what are your thoughts on this unprecedented pandemic?
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought the world to a halt. Most businesses and organizations, government or private have realized the importance of being nimble and agile. They are looking at options and solutions which can help them remain buoyant even in these turbulent times. This has brought a tectonic shift in which the world operates and has forced the organizations to create new avenues for continuing their daily operations. And lately remote working is one such option that has helped organizations immensely.
There is a need for businesses to strategically mitigate the challenges that the pandemic has brought down on us. Identifying the right collaborative platform for the organization is one such strategy. Organizations can opt for easy to use platforms which bring together various work tools to save time and enhance productivity. Lark is one such tool and in its own unique way is playing a key role in enabling business continuity during the time of lockdown and is empowering professionals and organizations to become productive and remain connected.
During this lockdown how have you boosted the morale of your team, and some of the measures you have taken at this juncture?
Since most of the businesses are working remotely, we have seen a surge in the number downloads for our Lark Suite. This high demand has made our team busier than ever and hence it becomes pertinent to keep our teams motivated, focused, and encourage them to maintain a work-life balance. Lark as a brand is committed to team culture as collective efforts bring greater success and sense of belonging.
During the lockdown, we as a team are connected beyond office tasks to celebrate anniversaries/birthdays/other successes virtually. Some of these measures we feel are important such as sharing work from home best practices and etiquette, ensuring the well- being of our teams through consistent engagement, offering proactive tips to be more organized, enabling teams with right tools and technology, and positive discussions to keep everyone calm and less stressed during lockdown.
A learning and a message to the young millennials.
I believe that experience is a great teacher. Each one of us have our own set of experiences and they play a great role in learning and shaping us. Each experience (whether positive or otherwise) brings a revelation, we just need to have the eye to look for it. Experiences also help you to constantly evolve and I would want millennials to embrace experiences and link them with their learning to move forward.