With the coronavirus pandemic came the rise of remote work, and projections show that trend isn’t slowing anytime soon. According to data scientists at Ladders, 25% of all professional jobs in North America will be remote by the end of 2022, and remote opportunities will continue to increase through 2023.
Whether you’ve been working remotely for a while now, or you’re just transitioning to a remote work environment, staying productive while working from home can be a challenge. Here are five tips from our technology experts to help you and your business achieve success while operating remotely:
1. Keep your regular schedule & routines
When working remotely, it's tempting to take a few extra minutes to lay in bed in the morning or work in your pajamas. Don't give into this temptation! Wake up, shower, get dressed, or do whatever else you normally would if you were going into the office. You should also set up a distraction-free office space within your home so you can focus. If you normally sit in an office chair at a desk, it’s beneficial to have that same set up while working remotely. Bottom line—it’s important to keep your regular schedule and routines. Your brain is already primed to work this way, so keeping your environment and habits consistent will prevent you from losing productivity.
2. Communicate with co-workers & clients as normal
One of the most challenging aspects of working remotely is staying connected to your team and clients. It’s crucial to keep an open line of communication with your team while working from home. There are so many applications that can be used to stay in touch with your co-workers these days: Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Slack, email, and possibly group texting (if permitted). It’s also crucial to keep your customers informed regarding changes in your normal operations due to remote work (i.e., hours of operation, who to contact for assistance, etc.). Aside from that, you should continue communication with clients as normal, even if that means by phone or email rather than in-person.
3. Keep your documents readily available in the cloud
If you are saving files on your desktop—and not in the cloud—it’s extremely important to move those files to SharePoint Online, OneDrive for Business, or whatever other platform you use, such as GoogleDrive or DropBox. The switch to cloud services ensures your work is securely syncing to the cloud and available when you need it. Working in the cloud will also make it far easier for you and your co-workers to collaborate. Both of these elements will ensure that you stay productive while working from home.
4. Set up a secure, remote server
Many businesses still use servers to run critical software applications (i.e., QuickBooks, Sage, Epicor, Black Mountain, file shares, etc.), whether the server is physical hardware on-premises, or a cloud server living in Microsoft or Amazon data centers. Most businesses need employees physically at the office for them to access the server. However, with the correct firewall and configuration of a virtual private network (VPN) tunnel, employees can securely work from home and still be productive. Do you need help setting up cloud services for your employees or carrying out a full cloud migration? The cloud experts at Bit-Wizards can help. Click here.
5. Remain vigilant & watch out for “bad actors”
Some people will try to capitalize on certain vulnerabilities that come with the rise of remote work. These "bad actors" may attempt to connect with you through phone calls, emails, and social media messages. Sometimes these communications are easily identified as malicious, but others may appear as normal and safe. Our main piece of advice is to remain vigilant while working from home. Don’t open or respond to emails that seem fishy, and make sure your business IT is set up with proper protections in place.
Bit-Wizards can help set you up for success with remote work
If you need assistance getting your employees set up to work remotely, or if you have questions about anything technology-related, we have your back. We have a team of Wizards ready to help, and we'll be here every step of the way. Contact our Managed IT Services team today.