Reset and Thrive Part Four

Reset & Thrive Your Business

Maintaining the Remote Workplace Environment You Created

Reset and Thrive Your Business (04) - Maintaining the Remote Workplace Environment You Created

  • 11 August 2020
  • 5.2 minutes to read

This blog is the fourth piece in our Reset & Thrive blog and webinar series, all of which can be viewed here:

  1. Reset & Thrive – What’s Next?
  2. Reset & Thrive – Planning Your Digital Transformation
  3. Reset & Thrive - Getting Your Remote Workplace Strategy Implemented
  4. Reset & Thrive - Maintaining the Remote Workplace Environment You Created
  5. Reset & Thrive – How to Reduce Security Risks in the Future
  6. Reset & Thrive - Why Future Remote Workforces Need Advanced Data Backup
  7. Reset & Thrive - How HR can Facilitate Agile Work
  8. Webinar Recap: The Remote Working Reset

Due to the current state of the world, many companies have asked their employees to work remotely for the time being. Over 72 % of businesses will not open shop before January 2021, and 26 percent don’t ever see their workforce returning to the pre-pandemic mode of working.

While experts recommend establishing remote working strategies and advanced training, such preparation may not be feasible in rapidly developing situations or times of crisis. However, there are steps to take to improve engagement, efficiency, and productivity within the remote workplace environment. Let’s take a closer look at how to maintain your new remote work environment so your organization can start enjoying all of the benefits.

Challenges of the Remote Workplace

Managing a remote workforce creates unique challenges for supervisors. The lack of person-to-person interaction and reduced managerial oversight may reduce productivity (although research shows that this is not the case). Effective communication may be hampered when telecommuting as it can be more challenging to receive managerial guidance or support when needed.

Communication challenges in a remote environment can also affect interactions between coworkers. If there isn’t an open line of communication or employees aren’t online when they’re supposed to be, time and effort could be wasted by simply trying to communicate. Other problems include increased distractions at home and feelings of social isolation among workers.

By leveraging a remote workplace strategy with support from cloud-based solutions and managed services, you can mitigate some of these challenges. Learn below how to deploy managed solutions and the benefits you can get in terms of remote workplace productivity.

System Security

Security is a significant concern for any workforce - but it is even more important in a remote workforce where there is no centralized networking system with security checks and procedures in place. While there are several tools to secure the office network, deploying these tools on employees’ personal devices may not be possible or may be subject to employee error.

Where infrastructure is robust, employees will have dedicated work devices with relevant protections that are simple and intuitive to use; otherwise, they may defer to their personal devices. If hackers penetrate these devices, they have a gateway to your company network.

You can use managed services to deploy security solutions on employees’ personal and work devices, sealing up vulnerabilities that may be exploited for cybercrime or other unauthorized access. These services also perform regular monitoring and security checks and include protocols to prevent external access to the company network and strategies for data recovery in the event of breaches or damage

Security Compliance

Another challenge businesses face is ensuring that the hardware and software solutions used within the remote workplace environment meet security compliance regulations. Some enterprises have deployed virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) to protect remote workers.

All companies with sensitive and/or proprietary data should use VDIs which employees log into directly in order to work and communicate with coworkers and supervisors. VDIs have all the necessary files, infrastructure, customer data, and software solutions to ensure continued productivity and efficiency of the workforce even while working remotely. Taking this precaution will help keep your organization secure and in compliance, which should reduce the overall risk of breaches or attacks.

Communication and Collaboration

As mentioned, there is no substitute for the in-person interactions of a centralized workplace. Virtual meetings, chats, phone calls, and emails are poor substitutes for 1:1 interaction, but they are the best alternative. It is necessary to have multiple channels of communication available that are reliable and convenient which can significantly empower collaboration and service delivery in a remote environment.

Most SaaS organizations have stepped up to provide tools for better communication, sharing documents, hosting meetings, and other ways of real-time collaboration as everyone turns to remote work. Leverage these tools in your remote environment where possible for optimum productivity.

IT Support

Moving to a remote workforce could mean that your employees face even more challenges with their devices and networks. Any robust remote workplace environment should include helpdesk services to address technical hitches employees face at home. If you run an IT department, you may be able to offer the support needed in-house; otherwise, you will need to contract managed IT Support services.

The advantage of managed services is the availability – you can get 24/7/365 support for cases where employees are working at all hours. Remember that the remote workplace is more flexible; some employees will work at night because there are fewer distractions then, and they too should have access to support when they need it.

Managed IT support services are often robust, with staggered work schedules and dedicated training for employees. They also remain apprised of the latest technologies and solutions, even those that your in-house team may have missed. This is an absolute must for your remote workplace environment, as it makes colleagues feel supported no matter from where they are logging on or when.

Flexibility

The most alluring aspect of a remote workplace is the flexibility it offers.

Businesses should invest in infrastructure to ensure remote workers have access to the necessary data and tools from wherever, mostly through cloud software and database deployments. Hardware support in the form of office phones and data plans will ensure employees can quickly get and make business calls, and apps for android and iOS may also be necessary.

Final Thoughts

The freedom to work from home can be made more meaningful by giving workers the support they need to be efficient and productive. This means focusing less on day-to-day productivity, which is subject to countless external factors (especially now) and more on deliverables over given periods.

Managed services and cloud-based software solutions are the future of a robust but secure remote workplace environment. Using these services, you can ensure compliance, improve service delivery to clients, raise productivity, and receive professional help to run a successful remote workplace environment.

Ready to Get Your Strategy Implemented?

If you could use a hand implementing your organization’s remote workplace strategy, SoftwareONE is here to help. Discover the benefits of partnering with us to ease into the world of permanent telecommuting.

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