The world of work has changed dramatically. Offices filled with busy employees and long commutes are no longer the norm. Today, remote work is a big part of how we work, bringing both benefits and challenges. It has even changed how we provide business IT support and work internally. Therefore, as a business owner, preparing your company for remote work requires careful planning. Here’s what you need to know.

Embracing the New Normal

Think about Jane, a project manager at a tech company. She used to spend two hours a day commuting. However, when her company switched to remote work, her life improved. She could manage her time better, balancing work and personal life. This flexibility is a big benefit of remote work. Consequently, employees like Jane often feel happier and more productive working from home.

For business owners, the benefits of remote work go beyond happy employees. You can hire world-class talent from anywhere, not just those close to your office. This means you get a diverse team with a wide range of skills and ideas to support your business.

Remote work also saves money. You don’t need as much office space, which cuts down on rent and other expenses. Moreover, studies show that remote workers can be more productive with fewer distractions and a comfortable home environment.

Navigating the Challenges

However, remote work has its challenges. Communication can be harder when your team is spread out. Misunderstandings can happen, and some employees might feel isolated without the daily interactions in the office. For instance, Jane might miss out on the casual chats that often led to great ideas. If not rolled out with the proper IT infrastructure and system, team members can feel like they don’t have the same support they did in office.

Furthermore, security is another concern. With employees working from different places, the risk of cyberattacks goes up. Thus, you need strong security measures to protect your data. Managing remote employees is different too. It requires new tools and strategies, which can be a learning curve for many managers.

Laying the Foundation

To support remote work, make sure your employees have reliable technology. Provide company-owned laptops, high-speed internet, webcams, and headsets. This ensures everyone has the tools they need to work effectively. Providing employees with laptops and docking stations allows for fully remote work and hybrid work. Employees are able to work from the office or at home and use the same, convenient device at both locations.

Security is key. Use VPNs and secure file-sharing platforms to protect your data. For example, we’ve helped our customers migrate to cloud platforms such as Microsoft 365, Azure, Citrix, etc. You should consult with your managed IT services provider to determine which security options are best for your organization.

Equally as important, invest in good collaboration tools like Microsoft Teams, Slack, Zoom, or Trello. These tools help keep your team connected and organized. It’s also important to set clear communication policies, including expected response times and regular check-ins, to maintain clarity.

Finally, it is critical to invest in a managed services provider to support a remote or hybrid work environment. This provides all employees with a resource that provides support when incorporating new systems and IT infrastructure.

Understanding Application Needs

It’s important to understand the difference between applications that run on an online platform versus those that require a server. For instance, QuickBooks Online allows access from anywhere, whereas QuickBooks Desktop requires a server to operate. Therefore, if your business relies on server-dependent applications, consider setting up an on-premises terminal server, app server, or virtual server paired with a VPN connection for remote access. This setup ensures that your team can securely access necessary applications from any location and that your IT department can provide support remotely when needed.

Training and IT Support

Training is also important. Teach your employees how to use new tools and follow security protocols. We’ve supported our customers transitioning to remote work by providing training sessions and ongoing business IT support, ensuring any technical issues are quickly resolved. Our experience shows that with the right tools and strategies, remote work can be highly effective.

We have even seen improvements in our ability to provide IT support to our customers. Remote IT support for businesses has never been easier with the available collaboration tools. This ensures that all employees at a business are able to receive the support they need, regardless of their location.

The Bottom Line

Switching to remote work brings many benefits but also some challenges. By understanding these and preparing properly, you can create a productive and secure remote work environment for your employees.

Prepare your business for the future of work today and enjoy the flexibility and productivity that remote work offers. We’re here to help you every step of the way, ensuring your transition is smooth and secure. Instead of spending your day searching for “it support near me”, give us a call and see how we can help.

Schedule a consultation today.