In a world of constant change, we look to those who lean in and create the change they want to see in the world. Last week, Electric brought together a lineup of powerful changemakers at Elevate, a virtual event for those doing the hard work, leading the change, and seeing it through.
Never has the way we live and work shifted so dramatically in such a short space of time. But with this change comes an opportunity: to elevate work, and the world around us.
A year of turning points
In March of 2020, businesses around the world were facing the unknown. Many were forced to downsize or furlough their workforces. Others simply left their offices, sending employees to work from home with little notice. While this abrupt transition was unthinkable at the time, the idea of simply returning to the office post-pandemic soon became equally absurd. Could we really just go back to the way we worked “before”?
Here at Electric, we witnessed first-hand the rapid adjustments that businesses had to make. As I shared at Elevate, we observed a number of trends in our own customer base that shed light on how work was changing. Of course, many of these trends are still continuing to unfold. The only constant? The need to remain agile, while taking full advantage of flexible tools, technology, and support to make it possible.
The shift to remote working
As offices shuttered their doors in early 2020, businesses scrambled to shift to a new stack and a new way of working. Despite collective uncertainty at the time, one thing was clear to us at Electric: our customers would need to quickly pivot to a remote working environment.
As a company founded on our expertise in remote IT, we became quickly immersed in the realities faced by our customers. Painful furlough decisions led to an influx of time-sensitive offboardings, while other companies ramped up investment in their teams and their security standards. We observed trends including:
37% increase in offboardings in March 2020, followed by another 43% increase in August.
350% increase month-over-month in requests to enable secure remote access through VPN.
50% increase quarter-over-quarter in procurement and provisioning of new devices for employees working from home.
7.5x increase in the purchase, setup, and provisioning of Zoom accounts.
Businesses used our proprietary platform to quickly adapt and manage these changes. One customer of ours, Evolv, tripled its headcount during this time, scaling to over 100 employees. Using Electric, they provided new hires with a seamless remote onboarding experience, with devices delivered straight to their doors.
“When we all went home, we didn’t miss a beat when it came to IT support and business systems accessibility, which was huge for us.” – Michea McAffey, Office Manager, Evolv.
Next, a transition to the hybrid model
As the world turned a corner in early 2021, hybrid work became the hot topic. Were companies returning to the office? If so, would a five day work week be the norm? How would businesses maintain a level playing field if some employees returned to the office while others remained remote? What new collaboration software and office setups would be required to support this next evolution?
As our customers began to navigate the hybrid model, we were well positioned to support another transition. Hiring picked back up, with onboarding of new employees nearly doubling from February to March 2021. We continued to support teams like Evolv, as they welcomed some workers back to the office. Having onboarding new employees with Electric during the pandemic, all of their devices worked, either at the office or remotely, through a VPN.
“Electric set everyone up during provisioning, so it doesn’t matter whether you want to be in three days a week or not at all. The transition has been effortless.” – Michea McAffey, Office Manager, Evolv.
Continued investment in IT support
As Electric supported customers through this period of change, we also continued to invest in expanding our product offering. In 2020, we launched support for companies that use Microsoft Teams, expanding on our original Slack for chat-based IT support. We provided customers with a way to manage SaaS application inventory within our proprietary platform, Turbine. And, perhaps most importantly, we made security accessible in a world where it’s no longer a nice to have, but a necessity.
Although in-office support declined in 2020, we continued to expand our service partner network and now support over 200 national locations for on-site needs.
We continued to invest in our partner ecosystem, teaming up with Malwarebytes, Perimeter 81, Datto, Kaseya, and Jamf, to make third-party security solutions easily accessible to Electric customers.
We acquired not one, but two top managed service providers to complement our team and ensure our customers receive unmatched support. And just recently, we recently raised our Series D, so that we can continue to invest in the modern IT solution for small and midmarket companies.
IT as a Strategic Business Driver
At Electric, we envision the future of IT, not as a cost center, but as a strategic business driver. This vision is based on one foundational understanding: the biggest assets to a company are its employees and its data. Security and employee productivity are, of course, essential, but we believe that strategic IT can contribute even more to the trajectory of an organization.
As your business continues to add and change SaaS applications, as your employees move into different roles within your organization, and as your policies evolve over time, you need a platform that is flexible to your needs, and meets you where you are.
Electric is building a world where you can view, manage, and purchase all of your IT needs in one place, a perfect solution for tech support for startups. Where you can deliver seamless employee onboarding experiences, reduce unnecessary IT spend, and improve your team’s productivity by eliminating IT distractions.
Managing the IT needs of one employee is a challenge. Managing an entire company’s needs is untenable. You need a solution that streamlines and optimizes employee management, so you can focus on managing your business.
An Elevated Future
As we heard from so many of the speakers at last week’s event, the way we live and work has changed irreversibly. To fully grasp the opportunities that now lie ahead, we need flexible technology and support that makes evolution effortless.
We’re proud to share what we’ve been working on this year, and we can’t wait to help shape the future of IT at your organization. Thank you to everyone who joined us at Elevate, as well as our incredible speakers who shared their stories. From side hustles that changed the world and startups that scaled to industry leaders, to advice on staying ahead of the cultural curve and building resilient mindsets, we heard from a truly inspirational group of people.
If you missed the event, you can watch my full session below, or hear from the other speakers here on demand. Together, let’s elevate the way we work.