by Tami Wankoff
For most businesses, we are in a new “norm” where the vast majority of employees work remotely. This shift has and will continue to directly affect IT departments, end users, and corporate culture.
It’s a whole new world! There are many important considerations in equipment, logistics, security obstacles, end user support, and overall business operations. What are the challenges – questions to be asked then answered?
For the IT Department
The remote environment allows employees to be based anywhere in the world. However, IT typically manages the kitting and delivery of hardware / software. Are there remote international employees? What are the related cost factors when HQ is domestic, and shipping is international? Would it make sense for the employee to purchase equipment locally and expense the costs?
Managed Security Services:
According to VANDIS – Trends in Managed Services for 2021
With the steady growth of virtual workers and evolving growth of cybersecurity threats, there’s a greater demand for advanced protection. According to Deloitte more than 500,000 people globally between February and May 2020 were affected by breaches in which the personal data of video conferencing users were stolen and sold on the dark web.Has your firm enacted Two Factor Authentication (2FA)? This is an additional layer to protect the corporation and virtual workers.
Help Desk support changed due to Covid-19:
When COVID-19 first hit … IT help desk services initially increased by 30-40%. Few companies were prepared to handle such a significant and sudden increase in volume. – According to Maria Pardee, SVP & for Workplace & Mobility at DXC Technology.
To paraphrase, MetricNet-Deep Coding study, the drastic help desk increase for support, increased resolution time, which increased the cost per ticket resolution. These changes demanded the use of SSL VPN to access the corporate network which meant the purchase of additional VPN licenses (for some corporations 1,000’s of licenses).
There was stress put on SaaS collaboration tools such as Microsoft Teams, Zoom and Google Meeting. All the platforms had and still have intermittent issues. These challenges combined with residential bandwidth issues demanded “incident response” actions, and precipitated a shift from pre-pandemic “help desk” models.
For the Virtual Employee:
Home network infrastructures are riddled with problems. How many people are using bandwidth under a single roof and at what hours? Is throttling happening?
The paper filing system has been eliminated; however, the pandemic created demand for cloud-based file sharing, which required employees to immediately learn the new “filing system.” In addition to these challenges bandwidth issues compound the challenges many employees face keeping pace with daily work production.
From the employee perspective: “Is the company using a time tracking program – Why? I have time management skills. What are reviews/evaluations based on, beyond hourly ROI to prove/maintain value to the corporation?”
The Corporation – How to maintain the culture and corporate messaging:
What is included in the Welcome package?
Who will be assigned to on-board a new employee from the VPN, 2FA, programs, drive, portals, etc.?
What are the training modules…
- For security protocols?
- For creating the visual and feel of the company through all mediums – email, Facebook, LinkedIn?
Will there be weekly/monthly/quarterly team/department/company meeting for all employees to have access to information and knowledge to create unified messaging beyond the workplace environment?
Our “new norm” is becoming old… how a corporation evolves to required technology changes will be a direct factor for company growth or it may break the corporate virtual culture. Equally as important – how will this effect employee retention or will it create turnover? Clearly, corporations, employees and the IT department have important challenges to address. Technology can not only make or break a new hire’s “work from home” experience, but it will directly impact corporate culture and the success of employees and corporations in the future.
Corcentric is a global provider of business spend management and revenue management software and services for mid-market and Fortune 1000 businesses. Corcentric delivers software, advisory services, and payments focused on reducing costs, optimizing working capital, and unlocking revenue. To learn more, please visit https://www.corcentric.com/