In response to the global pandemic, millions of Americans have begun working from home. This shift, for many businesses, has been sudden and unexpected. While remote working at least part time was a reality for 4.3 million Americans before the pandemic, handling the dramatic uptick in remote workers can present challenges to some businesses.
One of the biggest of these challenges is the need to provide them with the IT support, in Austin and elsewhere, that they need. This support extends beyond making sure that everyone has a working computer and Internet connection. Here are a few considerations that businesses should make when helping their employees weather the pandemic from home.
Consideration 1: Security
Security is a concern for businesses no matter where their employees work. However, remote work presents certain security challenges that businesses must consider. For example, personal computers may not be secure enough for employees who regularly deal with sensitive data. These computers may be used by other members of the worker's family, contain viruses, or have software weaknesses that make hacking easier.
Similarly, when employees are receiving or sending sensitive data from home, the security of that data is in question. Sending the data over personal or public wi-fi connections can leave that data susceptible to interception. Similarly, mobile phones that employees may use to access sensitive data may be vulnerable to hacking.
Securing the sensitive data that employees are using while they work from home, therefore, should be a primary focus of businesses looking to support their remote workers. In some cases, policies can help to mitigate these security risks (i.e. Do not download sensitive data on a personal phone or device). In addition, IT support in Austin can help them to achieve this security in a number of ways.
For example, IT services can set employees up with a virtual private network (VPN), which provides a secure, encrypted pathway for data to travel between all devices on the network. No one who lacks the proper access can read that data, even if they manage to intercept it.
In addition, IT services can assist businesses in purchasing adequate and secure computers for employees, ensuring that each machine has the appropriate anti-virus software installed, setting up secure wi-fi, and more. The cybersecurity solutions they implement can keep your workers' machines, and your company's data, secure.
Consideration 2: Remote Issue Resolution
As employees spread out to work from home, their IT problems spread out, too. Fixing a VPN issue might require more than a trip to the IT office down the hall. Viruses might ravage a computer 20 miles from your office, or a worker 15 miles down the road might need assistance setting up a new program. An on-site IT department cannot provide adequate support in these situations.
IT support in Austin may be the solution for businesses looking to solve employees' issues from afar. These remote IT services can provide prompt and effective issue resolution no matter where your employees are.
Some examples of solutions these services provide are ticketing systems, 24/7/365 availability, the ability to access employees' computers remotely, and more. When in-person support is required, the right support company can even find local techs to visit the employee in person. With this kind of remote IT support available around the clock, businesses can more confidently employ remote workers during the pandemic and even beyond.
Consideration 3: Team Collaboration
Just because employees must work remotely does not mean they can work alone. Often, teams of employees need to connect in order to complete projects, share ideas, collaborate, and even simply alleviate the mental strain that can come from being alone for long periods of time.
In order to successfully support remote workers, businesses need to implement solutions that allow employees to connect with each other remotely. Video conferencing, document sharing, and telephone calls all need to be enabled for remote employees.
Some DIY solutions will work for businesses, especially small businesses with only a few remote employees.
However, as more and more employees begin working from home, the needs of these employees may become larger and more complex. More comprehensive solutions are required. Remote IT support in Austin can help provide these solutions.
For example, here at TARC, we can implement VOIP phone solutions to help employees securely make and receive calls while working remotely. These phone solutions can also enable conference calling, caller ID, call waiting, and other features that make phone collaboration easier. Other potential solutions include Microsoft Office 365 cloud products and other integrated cloud solutions, as well as other services that ensure that your employees have everything they need to connect and collaborate.
Remote work is becoming the norm in the face of the global pandemic. However, remote work was already thriving before the pandemic struck. It is possible that working from home will become even more of a reality not just now but into the future. Businesses need to be equipped to support their remote workers while continuing to achieve their business and productivity goals.
To that end, businesses may benefit from remote IT support in Austin, and elsewhere. In order to support their remote workers, businesses must consider security, remote issue resolution, team collaboration, and more. If you need help supporting your remote workers, reach out to TARC. We offer solutions that can benefit you and your employees now and in the long-term.