Empowering Staff to Work From Home

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic continues to push people to reshape the way their work and forcing organizations to explore mobility solutions more. Many organizations have not paid attention to business continuity and its requirements until this pandemic affected thousands of small to medium-sized businesses across the world. With limited resources, it is, somehow, quite understandable why smaller organizations skip risk management planning and procurement. This is simply because there are not a lot of resources, even people, within the organization to pay attention to such aspects of operations. But now that the pandemic has pushed organizations to rethink how they operate, managers are forced to play catch up and provide solutions to empower their workforce as they try to keep their operations up and running, even from remote locations.

How can organizations empower the workforce to deliver while working from home? From a technical support perspective, here are some points to consider.

(1) Provide IT equipment and connectivity.

Some staff are still using desktop computers with CPUs and monitors physically hooked to a printer and to a LAN cable. If this is the case, and there are no provisions for laptops or other mobile devices, organizations should at least be able to transfer the hardware from the office to the staff’s home. It should not stop there – connectivity is key. Whether it is providing pocket WIFI or dongles, the company should provide this to the staff who are required to deliver results from home as well.

(2) Ensure VoIP calls are available

While it is easier to reach staff on their personal mobile, organizations should understand that work calls may still be best conducted through official lines. VOIP calls should be enabled for staff to reach each other, to accept customers calling in, and even dial out. Setting this up and making sure this facility is working for every staff who’s working from home is critical.

(3) Make IT Support available and communicate clear hours for support.

Businesses should also help their staff in getting quick access to IT Support. For small businesses that didn’t initially have IT service providers, it would be best to look for remote IT support providers as well. There are organizations that offer remote support per user or on subscription. It is also important to clarify the hours which support will be available. This helps staff manage when they could raise IT issues and prioritize the tasks in getting technical difficulties sorted out.

(4) Clarify the most important tools for staff to have up and running at all times.

Organizations should understand that working from home may mean 80% to 90% capacity, at best. There will still be lapses in accessing operational tools which may have been readily available in the physical office. Identify the most important and essential tools for the staff and help them ensure these are always running smoothly.