Remote Working: How To Put The Pieces Together

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Working remotely can be great for allowing your team to continue to function as best as possible. With recent global events disrupting many industries, remote working has taken a dramatic increase in uptake. Many businesses are striving to allow users to work from home. However, there a few items that should be on your list to be ticked off before you even consider embracing the ability to work from home.

Software

Microsoft Teams

Teams should be high on your priority list as it will provide you with easy access to instant messaging, online meetings and file collaboration. You can use existing Office 365 accounts to take advantage of this tool set. With the ability to communicate with external clients too, Teams will allow you to stay in contact when away from the Office. Users that don’t have Teams installed can still benefit from its capabilities by using the web version. Some meetings even let users join without having to have a Microsoft account! This truly is a portable and intuitive system to use which makes remote working a whole lot easier to conduct.

RDS (Remote Desktop Service)

This allows you to connect to your on-premise server and files, via an easy to use piece of software. It emulates the content you would normally see at work, but via a remote service. Within a few clicks you will be able to reach the core content that usually would be restricted to just your office environment. The RDS service should be very similar to what you are already familiar with. Therefore, there isn’t a steep learning curve to overcome to be able to continue functioning as normal.

VPN (Virtual Private Network)

This handy tool allows you to work securely whilst away from the office. This reduces the likelihood of somebody snooping on you and your data. It allows you a connection to your workplace without leaving yourself completely vulnerable to cyberattacks. Having a VPN in use will shore up your cybersecurity and provide you peace of mind.

Emails

Emailing is still of course a crucial art of being able to keep in touch with customers and other businesses. As such, all the rules and care you’d take when working in the office still apply when working from home. Keeping an eye out for spam emails is of course a must, as you are still just as much at risk at home as you are in the office. You can use email encryption to further boost your defences when conversing via the internet.

Hardware

Laptop

A laptop can be really useful when it comes to remote working as it enables to you to be able to work away from the office. However, it also means you are not restricted to working in one central locale. It also provides the ability to connect to additional monitors and peripherals. Therefore, you will have the accessibility of your usual office desktop or tower computer. This can be done with the mobility and flexibility a laptop provides. It’s worth going for a laptop with at least modest specifications to ensure that you don’t have any frustrations when it comes to operating your work as you normally would.

Headset

Being able to communicate crisply and clearly over a laptop or PC when working from home will also be vital in maintaining your ability to effectively communicate with both colleagues and clients. Many headsets are simple to setup, offering ‘plug & play’ functionality. By using software such as the aforementioned Teams to facilitate such communication, you can get the best out of your headset or audio setup. Don’t scrimp on quality however. Sometimes cheaper headsets can be misleading and actually be subpar for the audio quality you need. Also comfort is a large factor when wearing them for long periods.

As we’ve mentioned, with recent events proving that home working is viable and occasionally a necessary process, having the all the pieces in place for continual and successful working away from the office is paramount. With the advent of these tools and their capabilities, you can work in confidence. You know that you’re able to take complete advantage of what they can do.

Workspace

Working from home has its benefits, but it’s crucial that you organise and plan where and how you are going to work sensibly. This is because getting it wrong can be detrimental to your productivity and well being. Pick a comfortable, well lit space, free from distraction. Make sure you have everything you need to work effectively with easy reach. This includes your laptop, peripherals, refreshments and the like. Additionally, keeping yourself fresh is paramount. Therefore, you can continue to process work just as well as you can in your work environment. This includes things like taking screen breaks regularly to avoid fatigue to your eyes. You can also take this opportunity to stretch your limbs and perhaps even get some brief exercise. Looking after your body when working from home is important as it can sometimes get neglected.

There is also some mental adjustment to working from home as well, which is why it is again important that you plan properly. You need to be free from interruption, so setting yourself up to work successfully from home will mean less time stressing over things. Just like taking physical breaks for your body, you need some time to rest and recharge your mind too. Make sure to stay in touch with loved ones. Also, if you need a moment of composure, be sure to take it. In doing so, you will be more proficient when you continue working.

What Comes Next?

We may well find that this sudden shift to remote working will ignite many businesses to consider a permanent switch to such a setup. With many meetings being forced to be held online out of necessity, many participants are now waking up to the real possibility of a cultural shift in how we work. The amount of travel time will be reduced at the very least!

If such a shift were to happen, many businesses would of course need to ensure that they have the adequate provisions to be able to undertake such occurrences. This is where some of the items discussed will come into play. Nobody can be sure of the extent that remote working will have to be used in such a meaningful way. With a global workforce having to rethink how it conducts its day to day operations, remote working may well be the saviour that keeps business operating.

To learn more about all the items discussed in this article and how best to utilise them, why not contact us at hello@bcs365.co.uk or call us on 01843 572 600.

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