Fewer than 4% of Canadians working from home were ready to fully return to office work in March 2022, according to Angus Reid Institute. That's a seismic shift in the world of work.
The truth is that IT Services need to change too, in order to keep up with this reality.
With remote work on the rise globally, it's becoming a continuous challenge to provide employees with a productive and secure method of working from home or other locations outside the office.
IT staff play a crucial role when it comes to both these aspects — productivity and security — and it will be beneficial to look into how IT depts can contribute.
How Can IT Help Remote Workers?
Switching from on-premises to remote work involves more than simply taking a work laptop home. For this transition to be successful, a large amount of responsibility falls on the shoulders of your IT staff.
Buy and configure additional equipment
To provide employees with proper remote working conditions, your company may need to buy additional IT equipment. Together with HR and department managers, your IT department establishes the needs of every remote worker and the most efficient way to fulfill them.
Install additional security software and make network changes
To ensure secure connections when working from home, IT should install additional security software on all remote computers, such as VPN. They will probably also have to make on-premises network changes, enforce strict policies, and train employees on best practices in terms of privacy and security.
Install new collaboration tools and ensure training
To maintain productivity levels, it's extremely likely that your remote workers will need access to new collaboration tools, such as video conferencing apps, time trackers, and task management tools. Besides deploying and monitoring these apps, your IT department will have to play a significant role in choosing and procuring them, as well as help with training.
How Does This Impact Your IT Department?
Needless to say, all of the new remote-focused tasks come on top of daily IT duties and require constant monitoring, troubleshooting, and updating. These are not just one-time assignments and should not be seen as some sort of 'quick fix'. Because these new remote practices are essential in preventing disruptions, they will often become top priorities, pushing regular tasks further down the To-Do List.
That has its security risks and it also overburdens your IT personnel, rendering them unable to focus on the bigger picture. While the first solution that comes to mind for many companies is to hire more people to help out, that generally proves to be quite a hefty and costly endeavor that can take a long time.
As a result of the additional workload, it may be beneficial to look into a trusted managed service provider (MSP).
Perhaps an MSP is the Ideal Solution for you?
MSPs offer peace of mind and ease of use for remote workers and the companies that employ them. A great MSP will help to reduce current IT duties, allow your staff to focus on what matters most, and provide redundancy and backup in case one of your IT employees becomes unavailable.
This incorporation of an MSP is the recommended route at any point in your business journey, but especially in this era of change when you have so many staff working remotely and you need to make adjustments to ensure continued productivity, security, and comfort for everyone in your company.
Contact Quercus IT today and benefit from world-class IT support, operations, and strategy for all your remote work needs.