Remote work has become the new normal across the country in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. With it has come a new series of technical and personnel management challenges to overcome, such as employees that aren’t familiar with remote working and data security. Having the right people with the right software and equipment and the proper security can make all the difference.
Conversations that would have occurred over the watercooler or in-person meetings or just chatting in the halls now need to take place over electronic communications, including email, video conferencing, and cloud share services. Some team members may be unfamiliar with the technology while others will take to it quickly.
With careful planning and by supporting your employees, everyone can feel empowered to be productive during an increasingly challenging time.
What These New Challenges Mean for Your Business
Working remotely may make some employees feel disconnected from their coworkers and word processes, making it harder to stay on task and in the loop. Some workers may not be as comfortable with video conferencing, cloud sharing, and other software. Others might not have access to their files and critical software that they need.
Relying on employees’ home networks can put valuable company information in a vulnerable situation. Some employees may have secure WiFi and network connections, while some may be relying on unsecured public networks. Many “free” telecommuting solutions have gaps in security.
IT issues that arise in the office will still occur during remote work and will be harder to fix without the IT Support staff on-site. Team members can become frustrated with equipment that isn’t working as they planned.
Best Practices: What Can You Do?
You never know when a disaster or other contingency will require your staff to work from home. Here are a few things you can do to make sure your business is prepared for any sort of emergency.
By having a plan, employees are more confident in their ability to complete their work, passing along that confidence to your clients. A seamless transition from office-based to home-based work will increase staff productivity, increase client confidence, and maintain staff morale through whatever challenges come your way.
Communication is vital for remote employees. Regular meetings using video conferencing technology will help keep employees engaged and on task. Group chats, video meetings, and emails can keep projects moving forward with constant communication among employees. Information that might have been passed along via seeing each other in the hallway or stopping by the coffee pot can be done quickly through technology and, unlike office chit chat, is documented and trackable. Consider engagement activities like daily check-in meetings, team-building exercises, and other activities to keep esprit de corps alive while working remotely.
A Virtual Private Network (VPN) can ensure that all communications and data are transferred and held securely. VPNs are easy to set up and use. This and other technologies can provide necessary cybersecurity features to protect your data from hackers. These networks are also more reliable than many “free” solutions.
A web-based or other external IT solution can allow staff to get immediate help for their IT problems and get them back to work faster. An around-the-clock IT solution supports staff at different sites in different areas and time zones, keeping delays and downtime to a minimum.
Using Blue Technologies to Keep Your Team Members Engaged Remotely
As the pandemic continues planning for a remote work situation will ensure an easy, efficient transition for employees and clients alike. It might seem like a reflex to just send everyone home to work on their computers, but careful rollout of an end-to-end solution is a best business practice.
Blue Technologies can provide everything from 24/7 IT support, Virtual Private Networks, on-site and remote support, and video and teleconferencing equipment and service. Our pre-planning services can keep you ahead of the curve and able to get to work and keep working, no matter the circumstances. Our suite of services includes setting up remote workstations, running virtual networks, and providing support throughout the process.
To start your journey toward efficient operations and to an optimized remote working solution from Blue Technologies, request an assessment today.