- After almost a year of work-from-home recommendations across the UK, many of us are adjusting to this new way of working.
- Because work-from-home has been going on so long, we thought now might be a good time to share some IT support tips to help manage your remote teams.
- These 6 IT support tips will help you work more securely, more productively, and with a renewed sense of teamwork – even when you’re far apart.
Be honest: how many times have you uttered the words, “You’re on mute!” in the last twelve months?
For many of us, working from home and connecting remotely has become the new normal – and it doesn’t look like it’s going anywhere just yet.
As we move into 2021, the team here at Get Support thought now was the perfect time to help you revisit your work-from-home strategy by sharing 6 top tips covering everything from security to productivity.
These tips should help you support your remote teams and make them feel a little more at home, even when it’s also their office.
#1: Remind your employees to balance home working the right way
If your team has been working from home for the first time these last few months, both you and they might have noticed how the lines between work and home life can sometimes seem to blur.
For this reason, it might be worth reminding employees that they should try to create a clear distinction between when they’re at work and when they’re at home.
This can be done in a few different ways, but ideas might include advising them to create a dedicated working space which is only used for work. This way, when your team sits down at their desk, they’ll know to switch to ‘work mode’ – and when they sit on the sofa, they’ll know it’s time to unwind.
With this sort of advice, you’ll be able to create a more productive, motivated, and engaged remote workforce – without causing any fatigue or unnecessary stress.
#2: Keep teams focused and motivated with regular team or 1-on-1 meetings
Since all of this began, many companies have discovered that working from home can be just as productive as working in the office.
That said, not everything is the same.
For example, work relationships will naturally be tougher to maintain when working from home. This means that some employees (but not all) might feel a bit isolated.
If you’re a manager or business owner, it’s a good idea to encourage your teams to meet regularly to maintain “face to face” contact with one another. Line managers might even want to schedule one-on-one catch-ups for employees who are having a tougher time adjusting to the work-from-home environment. This isn’t just good for employee’s stress levels – it’s also a good opportunity to talk about work-related topics “face to face”, rather than via chat or email.
It’s here that newer digital tools like Microsoft Teams can come in very handy.
Teams is a powerful tool for work meetings and communication, but it can also be the ideal way just to keep in touch with your team when you’re physically apart.
#3: Give your teams an easy way to report IT support problems
Endless video calls can be bad enough without also having to fight against technical issues.
As Brits, we have a tendency to try to “keep calm and carry on”, even when faced with irritating IT support issues, but it doesn’t have to be this way. In fact, when your remote teams are suffering the echo of a broken microphone, a pixelated mess of a video call, or any other technical issue, it's important that they report it to your IT support team.
Even when working from home, if your team are using your company’s hardware to do their jobs, your IT support team (like the remote team we have here at Get Support) will still be able to troubleshoot and, usually, resolve technical problems remotely.
#4: Working with sensitive data? Use Remote Desktop Connections to keep it all secure
One particularly frustrating aspect of working from home (especially for all the IT support teams out there) is that company computers will suddenly be making their way into the big wide world – and who knows where they might end up?
For some companies, this isn’t too much of a risk, but if you work with particularly sensitive customer data, it could be a disaster waiting to happen.
One top tip for remote teams in these businesses is to enable a Remote Desktop Connection (RDC) so that employees can log in to their workstation in the office safely and securely from their computer at home. If your company is using Windows Pro or Enterprise in your office, setting up RDC and allowing employees to securely log in to their workstations should be fairly straightforward.
The best part is that you and your IT support team have full control of the security policies, meaning your data will never leave the premises while still allowing your remote teams to do their jobs.
Of course, if you’re looking for data security without using Remote Desktop, that’s possible too – just ask a member of the Get Support team for details.
#5: Set out a clear policy for employees using their own devices
While most companies will assign dedicated computers or laptops for their staff while working from home, there may be times when your team – intentionally or not – choose to use their own devices instead.
If you don’t yet have an established policy for “BYOD” (Bring Your Own Device), you could potentially run into problems should your employees choose to access sensitive data or business-critical info from their own laptop, desktop, or smartphone.
With malware rife these days, the last thing you want to do is create any pathway which could lead to a potential cyberattack. By either clarifying your policy about personal devices, or getting your team set up for BYOD, you can solve two problems at once.
#6: Make sure your remote team is cybersecurity-aware
When everyone’s in the office, it’s easy to raise potential IT support or cybersecurity issues, even if an employee notices them only briefly.
When your team is all at home, on the other hand, they're a bit more likely to dismiss potentially suspicious things they encounter online while working. That could be an email from a sender they don’t recognise, an attachment which seems fishy (or should that be “phishy”?), or a pop-up which keeps coming back, it’s essential that you advise your team on what to look out for and how they should react if they encounter something suspicious.
Phishing and other forms of cyberattack have been ever more common since the shift to work-from-home in 2020, so it’s important that employees stay vigilant for any potential threats and keep your IT support team informed where necessary.
Need an IT support team you can trust? It’s time to Get Support
Working remotely is difficult enough without also needing to rely on an IT support team who aren’t there when you need them. At Get Support, we won’t let you down.
Ask about our IT support packages today and one of the team will be in touch to discuss your specific business needs and how we could help.
Ready to get started? Call us now on 01865 59 4000 or simply use the contact form below.