Why you should revisit your remote working practices

It has been over a year now since most businesses had to decide to work from home. You no doubt recall the rush of getting everyone’s technology set up. Ensuring they had all the right equipment to do their job, whether that was essential computer updates, installing new meeting software, or making sure anti-malware packages were up to date. It was a hefty task that was not something most had planned for.

Little did we know then that temporary would become so permanent.  Many businesses are giving their employees the option of working from home whenever suits them.

Did you put temporary IT ‘fixes’ in place to solve what have now become long-term strategies?

If you are working in a business where you are continuing to work from home a year on, this probably means that you haven’t thought to revisit your remote working practices since then. Now is the time to cement your long-term solution.

Below are five strategies you should consider for your remote working to be successful, efficient, and secured.

  1. Are you keeping the working style flexible? Is hybrid working the new norm?

Remote working means giving employees more flexibility around how and where they work, helping to restore some much-needed equilibrium to peoples’ work-life balance. You may want to look at flexible scheduling, including flexible daily start and end times and split shifts, which involve working earlier in the mornings and later afternoons or evenings, with a more extensive break in-between. This could potentially work better for your business and employees.

  1. Review your cybersecurity

Typically, at workplaces, someone is taking care of cybersecurity measures. But when working from home, you need to ensure that each team member understands how to handle it themselves. This is important, especially if they are using a personal laptop or computer. Here are a few tips to share with your remote team:

  • Always have your VPN turned on
  • Use Antivirus software
  • Don’t overshare your screen – and keep sharing sensitive information to a minimum
  • Update your programs and systems. To prevent cybercriminals from exploiting the weaknesses of your operating systems and programs, you will need to update regularly.  Make sure that your computer is running the newest version.
  • Enable auto-updates to ensure everything is safe; this is quickly done in your machine’s ‘settings,’ but if you are in any doubt, contact your IT support.
  1. Provide comprehensive user support and training

With remote working now being permanent, your employees need support at all times and not only when there is a problem with the technology. You may want to consider extending your phone support periods to cover the broader working hours for your hybrid office.

For the remote workers, it’s a good idea to install a tool so that the IT department or IT support company can see remotely what is happening on the computers and be able to fix the issue quickly and effectively.

  1. Mobile enablement the default

The use of mobile is no longer new and is a core part of how employees and customers engage with the digital world. Mobile support should be something you should consider when thinking about your IT’s agenda; many software tools and web services still aren’t designed for use on a smartphone.

It’s important to note that the need for mobile enablement of apps and services is even more crucial for customer-facing technology.

  1. Reshape equipment policies

Some businesses will want to provide all the equipment their employee needs, from computers, phones, routers and headsets. Or they might be slightly more flexible and let their employees use their own laptops/computers. Whichever you choose to do, you need to ensure that there are policies in place to establish what equipment employees must have to do their work. The potential mix of corporate and personal devices has implications for software licensing and costs that IT needs to ensure it understands.

People no longer accept second-rate technology or user experience when working from home.  It should be as easy and efficient to work from the front room as the board room.

Do you need some help assessing the best remote platform for your needs? Do you need some advice about cybersecurity and back-ups?  Please get in touch to find out more about how we can ensure your remote workforce is operating efficiently and securely.