Switching To A Remote Work Model
If coronavirus continues to spread at the rate it has been in the last few weeks, at some point soon you will have to tell your staff to work from home.
Do you know how to keep them productive when they can’t come into the office? You need to start migrating to a remote work model right away…
8 Steps To Switch To A Remote Work Model
- Confirm Your Utah IT Consulting Capabilities: IT will be all the more important at this time, and as such, you’ll want to make sure you have the right support services in place. A help desk support team should be available to your employees in the event of technology issues, questions or concerns. Typically, most of their work will be done remotely – troubleshooting issues and answering questions.
- Identify Critical Roles: Most jobs can be done from home. However, take a moment to consider what jobs specifically can be managed while outside of the office and document them.
- Roll Out A Communication Plan: You’ll want to keep in touch with your staff following a more rigid process than you would in the office when everyone is in the same place and readily available. Set a schedule for regular meetings to touch base and get updates.
- Make Sure Your Employees Are Connected: You need to poll your staff and find out who has a reliable Internet connection at home. If your staff lives in remote areas with poor connectivity, you may have to consider investing in cellular-data, or have a plan in place to deal with delays on their end. So long as they have a strong Internet connection, the rest of the work is on the IT services provider to deliver a responsive and user-friendly cloud platform with which the worker can access their business data.
- Support The User Experience: Your staff members need to be able to do their work, and easily. If they’re fighting against unintuitive software, a bad connection, or anything else tech-related, their standard workday won’t be all that productive. It won’t be long before your business’ productivity grinds to a halt.
- Confirm Hardware At Home: The right course of action is to have a conversation with each employee who will be working from home and have them send information regarding their computers, smartphones, and internet connection over to you.
- Make Necessary Updates: If you need to upgrade any devices or services (such as mobile data plans or internet packages), start doing so as soon as possible. For internet connections, you may also choose to provide corporate-owned smartphones with data packages that can be tethered to computers.
- Provide Remote Phone Capabilities: Cloud-based phone systems and collaboration tools, such as Microsoft Office 365, will play a crucial role in your business – allowing your team to work from home while still taking part in conference calls, video calls, file sharing and more.
Cybersecurity: The Most Important Consideration For Remote Work
It’s important to recognize that this pandemic will be like open season for cybercriminals. When businesses start prioritizing remote access to data over the security of that data, they make an easy target for hackers.
Think of it this way – at the office, everything is protected by the same set of cybersecurity solutions – firewalls, antivirus software, etc. These are defenses that you’ve invested in and can trust. Is the same true of your employees’ home networks and personal devices? Probably not.
The bottom line is that the easier it is for your staff to access business data, the easier it becomes for cybercriminals to do so as well. The more people you have accessing your data remotely, the more variables there are in your cybersecurity defense.
That’s why you need to take additional steps to secure remote access:
- Deploy a Virtual Private Network (VPN) solution that allows staff members to access business data securely
- Make sure to disable split-tunneling on your VPN so that when employees are connected to business data, they don’t also have an Internet connection open that could compromise security
- Deploy defensive software on employees’ home devices
- Check home Wi-Fi network settings to make sure they are password protected
- Make sure that security systems are up to date
Is Your Staff Ready To Work From Home?
It’s understandable if you’re overwhelmed by the idea of launching remote work capabilities right now. You’re short on time and staff, and you may not have the skills or knowledge to begin with, and that’s OK.
Nexus IT Consultants can help – our expert team is available to help you get your staff ready to work from home.