Telecommuting has many benefits for employees and employers alike. Given the technological advances that have occurred to promote web-based collaboration in the workplace, it seems that telecommuting is quickly becoming seen as a standard to the current workforce. Telecommuting is defined as a working arrangement in which employees are able to work from a location other than their normal worksite including their home, coffee shops, co-working spaces, or libraries. Stepping into the world of telecommuting can be intimidating for an organization that doesn’t know the first few steps to transition to a telecommute working environment. Consider the following when implementing guidelines around your potential telecommuting program and learn how to handle risks and difficulties.
Like with many aspects, change can be difficult for everyone involved. And creating a telecommute workflow environment is no different. There are aspects of your business that will remain important even while employees are not working in the office.
Keeping the business running smoothly
Maintaining business continuity is important in everyday operations, but especially when you’re transitioning to a telecommuting work environment. To ensure tasks are being completed efficiently and effectively, you need to have the right solutions in place. With remote workers, it is exceedingly important to stay in communication with your team. Establish ahead of time how this will be done. Using applications such as Office 365 allows team members to chat, email, and video conference. This gives employees a collaborative tool to check-in or review items in progress to keep things moving forward.
- Office 365 can be a great asset for communication
- It’s essential to maintain continuity in everyday operations
Staying secure and compliant
While employers considering implementing telecommuting programs often focus on the productivity and accountability of their staff, an often overlooked element of remote work is the security of the data employees are accessing outside of the secure office network. Make sure computers have up-to-date antivirus software installed. Consider using multi-factor authentication and password-protect all devices each employee is using for work-related tasks. Make sure that data going out from all devices is encrypted in a secure cloud-based backup.
- Make sure data is encrypted and secured
- Multi-factor identification for extra security
Unity in workflow
Making sure that all the necessary work gets done and that all employees working together are on the same page can be a challenge in a telecommute working environment. To avoid this, using cloud-based spreadsheets with a task list updated in real-time allows everyone involved to keep track of where a project stands. A study shows, 44% of remote workers chose real-time communication tools as the most vital in maintaining connections. Additionally, using cloud-based storage and communication allows employees to send files through a secure platform that other employees already have access to. This way, each person knows the file is safe and can quickly access the information.
- Files accessed quickly and securely in the cloud
- Cloud-based spreadsheets for tracking projects
How to work from anywhere
Developing a telecommuting workforce means that they need to have the tools and resources to work from any place at any time. Luckily, this can be made possible with cloud-based solutions. Telecommute workers can have access to the files, applications, and data they need as long as they have an internet connection. Consider setting up a cloud environment in addition to your native server. This allows remote employees to gain access to the information they need from any device rather than having one sole device that can access the server.
- Access data from any device with the cloud
- Consider setting up a cloud environment for your workforce
Maintenance and support
Making sure that your telecommuting employees are doing their jobs efficiently and effectively is at the top of any employer’s minds. Telecommuting employees are no different from onsite employees when it comes to their IT issues or questions. Establishing a system that remote employees can voice their questions or concerns should also be considered when implementing a remote working environment.
- Don’t forget that remote workers still have IT issues
- Establish a system for IT questions and concerns
Choosing the right workforce for IT support
At RedNight Consulting, we’re here to help implement a strategy that works best for your telecommuting employees. We have partnered with AWS to provide top of the line cloud computing solutions to keep your business operating as if everyone was in the same office. To learn more about remote IT solutions, contact us today!