In our last blog we discussed the trend of remote working. In order for organizations to transition their employees from working on site to working from home, there are some necessary adjustments in technology that need to be made. In this blog we will talk about which technology companies need to add to enable their employees to work from home effectively.
Necessary Technology to Work from Home
It wasn’t always possible for a large number of employees in any business to work from home, but enormous advances in technology and widespread adoption of broadband internet have changed that. Workers can now be efficient and productive no matter their physical location. In fact, the American Psychological Association has stated that, done correctly, “telework can improve employee productivity, creativity, and morale.”
In order to be able to allow or facilitate employees working from home, a company must have a number of technologies installed. These are:
- VPN – A virtual private network provides a secure communication channel through public internet connections. Without a VPN in place, employees cannot communicate effectively. The ability to communicate is essential when employees will be working in different locations.
- Network Security – Businesses cannot afford to have their networks hacked and data breached. The public is familiar with horror stories about hackers siphoning data. For large businesses, repairing that damage can be finally catastrophic. It also destroys productivity, efficiency, and consumer confidence in the business. Investing in proper network security is worth the cost.
- VoIP – Voice over Internet Protocol is a telephony system that transmits data via the internet. VoIP systems can transmit a variety of data: audio, video, photo, and text. They are a must have for telecommuting. They allow employees via apps like Skype and Whatsapp to communicate directly and inexpensively. With VoIP, accessing office phone calls, sending instant messages and files, teleconferencing with clients and other employees, and forwarding calls to mobile phones are all possible from any location.
- Cloud Technology – Cloud optimization is becoming essential to business as it allows for safe, off-site data storage, easy access to a tremendous amount of data as well as data backup. Companies should also make sure their employees have secondary backup systems in place as well and policies in place requiring regular backup of data.
- Management Tools – Project management tools are vital when employees cannot wander a few desks down to see how their coworkers are progressing with their part of a task. Tools like Podio and Basecamp make organization, communication, and accountability easier to accomplish with remote workers.
- Time Tracking – When your employees work at home, they don’t punch a timecard, but they still need to record their hours. Timecard software technology like Freshbooks helps managers track their remote workers and sends the appropriate data directly to payroll staff. This saves time and paperwork and allows for greater oversight of what hours are being worked on specific projects or for specific clients.
All of the above technology should be in place before trying to establish a remote workforce. They will save your company’s management time, money, and frustration. In addition, companies should have a managed services provider in place to troubleshoot any IT issue or emergency, proactively update technology, and protect from data loss. With the proper technology and technical support, remote working is a great option for many businesses, one that can cut costs, increase productivity, and improve employee morale.
If your organization is exploring work-from-home options and you’d like more information, please contact us at Moss today. We would love to begin a conversation about your needs and how we can design a solution that will meet them.