You run a small business which relies on a team that work remotely for you. Whether they work from home or from the local coffee shop; your team need to be able to access and utilise the same resources as if they were in the office. That way their day to day processes aren’t disturbed. And they are even more productive, potentially.
We explore some top tips to ensuring your team work like a dream. Have a look at these points and tell us if we’ve missed any out.
The right people
You need the sort of people who hate micro management and love full autonomy. They don’t need hand holding and they don’t need constant reassurance. They just need to get on with the job in hand. Voice and e-mail interaction is sufficient. They would have already sorted out a home broadband access and with a good laptop, cloud-based storage system – they are good to go. They work remotely like a dream.
Most job functions can be done from home with the right systems in place; and with VOIP telephony systems even the receptionist could be at home! A receptionist who works remotely? Who would have thought.
THE RIGHT TECHNOLOGY
When we talk about technology we really mean software. After purchasing and setting up a laptop, you need to think about the support software that your team will use every day, such as Microsoft Office, Skype for Business, CRM system such as Infusionsoft or Zoho, accounting software, email marketing software and so much more. There will also be software that the team don’t see or use but you’ll know it’s working – such as anti-virus, capacity monitoring and system back up software.
Here at Think Cirrus when our team work remotely, we know that it’s just like being in the office because we can use instant messaging, and VOIP telephones. The office number promoted on our website follows us where ever we go and is even diverted to our mobiles when we’re on the road. We never miss a call, because we are emailed the details and we don’t know what we’d do without it.
And what is even better is that all the calls made from home are for free because it’s over the internet, using the laptop and a headset and there isn’t any clunky and outdated VPN access because everything is on the cloud.
We promote it and are advocates of it because that is our we operate within this business. Essentially, we practice what we preach.
It’s all about the data
There should be no obstacles to prevent the home worker from accessing internal IT systems. This means that if you have everything set up properly, there shouldn’t be any issues, sharing documents or editing and sharing files.
When working remotely, there tends to be a bad habit that forms when it comes to saving documents. The mindset turns into storing data locally on their desktop or laptop. This data needs to be protected from data loss, system outages, theft, fire etc. To keep your corporate data safe, you should think about behavioural policies. Such as making sure business-critical data is only stored on central systems or that “remote” data is protected by an automated online backup solution that regularly backs up user data and requires no end user knowledge or intervention.
In the case of data loss, individual files or e-mails can be recovered quickly. If a desktop / laptop needs to be rebuilt all data can be recovered from the online storage solution.
By implementing an industry-leading archiving solution inactive yet important files and emails that have previously been archived can be accessed remotely and even be made available by offline access, which is synchronised with the central archive when the home worker is (back) online. This ensures that home worker has access to live and archive data when working remotely.