The recent COVID-19 pandemic has quickly made many companies rethink their telecommuting policy. Whether they previously had one or not, the need to keep workers home for social distancing has changed the calculation dramatically. Many businesses around the world have already sent employees home to work due to the outbreak, and often it’s done with little time to prepare. There are multiple considerations when implementing a remote workforce to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus. These include:
- Security for remote connections
- How to handle employee device use at home
- Cloud tools to aid communications
- Ability to access all the files and tools needed to perform their jobs
- How to handle remote tech support for at home employees
Companies that rush into this type of transition without the technology support they need, can end up with a myriad of issues, including a data breach, file loss, or reduced productivity due to IT problems that workers run into. Small businesses can often get caught in the crossfire between needing to quickly send workers home due to COVID-19 and the lack of time to plan. But with the proper support via Managed IT Asia’s Managed Remote Access, even a quick transition can be handled securely and your operations can continue with minimal disruption.
Tips for Efficiently Managing a Remote Work Realignment
When your team is no longer working at the same office, confusion can be a result if they don’t have the right tools or support. They may be working on personal PCs and have an issue trying to install business software. They could be connecting on unsecure networks not realising the additional risk to your entire network as a result. You should manage your employee devices and connections as if they were at the office, which means the use of managed services that can protect computers remotely in a number of ways. Here are several tips to ensuring a smooth office to remote work transition.
Remote Device Security
Whether you have your employees using their work devices at home (recommended) or they’re using their own personal computers to work from home, those devices need to be secure. With remote managed services, you can ensure a number of safeguards are taken that will help prevent breaches, including:
- Patch and update management
- Managed antivirus/anti-malware
- Cloud backup to prevent data loss
- Monitoring for any threats
Security of Remote Desktop Connections
If all your applications and files aren’t in the cloud, then you may need employees to log in to their desktop computer or an on-premises server remotely. Remote desktop connections can be fraught with dangers. In Q1 of 2019, 63.5% of all targeted ransomware attacks were launched using remote desktop protocol (RDP). You want to ensure you’re using the proper protection both on the devices accessing assets remotely and those devices being accessed. Remote monitoring can keep an eye out for any network intrusions and block them before they compromise your files.
Addressing Wi-Fi Connections
Employees that are working from home are going to have varying routers and router security. Some employees may even connect from a free public hotspot, leaving any data transmissions vulnerable to being intercepted. Have employees use a virtual private network (VPN) to encrypt their internet connections, which will add a much-needed layer of security and prevent data from being compromised.
How Do Employees Get Tech Help?
If your employees are at home and run into a computer issue, how are they going to get the help they need? This is a time when remote tech support is going to be a life saver for them. When you sign up for Managed IT services for your small business from Managed IT Asia, you get unlimited phone and remote support, meaning your users can get the help they need fast and get back on task quickly.
Home Office Setups
Not all employees are going to have the equipment they need at home to do everything required for their daily work functions. Some considerations for equipment that may be needed when an employee is working from home include:
- Laptop or desktop
- Headset with microphone
- Web cam
- Handset for a cloud telephony system
- Reliable internet service
You can’t just assume that all employees will have what they need. Do an inventory of needed items with each one to determine any additional needs for their home office so they can be addressed before they’re sent home to work.
Data Access and Communications
Having the right cloud solutions to support your team is vital to keeping your operating running smoothly from remote locations. The main things you want to consider are the tools used for:
- Data access (cloud storage platforms like Google Drive or OneDrive)
- Team collaboration tools (Microsoft Teams, Slack, etc.)
- Productivity applications (Office 365, QuickBooks online, etc.)
If you’re not fully cloud transitioned, we can help you with a data migration prior to implementing remote workers to ensure they can access the files and work apps they need.
Work with a Partner You Can Trust for Managed Remote Services
If you’re facing a quick implementation of remote workers, let Managed IT Asia help you ensure it’s done smoothly and securely so your business operations don’t skip a beat. Contact us today for a free managed remote consultation. Call +65 6748 8776 or reach us online.
MANAGED IT ASIA, we are an IT Support, IT Solutioning and Managed IT Service Provider specializing in serving Small Businesses across Asia. Call us at +65 6748 8776 and let us manage your Small Business IT today!