It is now the norm and you as a business owner, manager, worker, manager, etc, must embrace the best of the best work from home tools to keep your business, your company, and the economy going. I want to share a few tips and tools based on my own experience, research, and technology learnings, as I have been working from home (#WFH) for more than 18 years. I understand not all job roles can be transitioned to a remote workforce, but for companies getting started, these tips might be the most helpful for you.
Choose your Security (Mobile, Online, eCommerce)
Whether you are using smartphones, tablets, or company provided/personal computers, you need to adhere to very strict security requirements for work activities. Make sure your Internet, Computer, and Phone security software is live, up to date, and activated. If you can, make sure to use a secure VPN connection when accessing corporate assets, files, and systems. If you fail here and allow employees to just use ANY device they have at home, then you are opening yourself up to massive vulnerabilities that you can bet will have hackers ready to grab and disrupt what they can.
Corporate Access and Corporate Liable Equipment and Devices
If you have to issue corporate liable or corporate provided devices, computing, smartphones, or other devices, please make sure to work with your technology partners to understand what might be included in the packages including troubleshooting, customer services, security, backup, software updating, etc. If you believe your industry or company will require employees to work from home for more than 60 days, then you might need to consider issuing company provided devices and equipment to better control and manage corporate assets, work activities, and of course security. If you do not have a budget to do this, then you might be able to at least invest in VPN services or mobile/IT security services to better protect your employees and company assets. Providers you might want to check into include Norton, McAfee, Samsung Knox, and Lookout.
Digital Communications (Messaging, Doc Sharing, Videoconferencing)
So many great options for communicating with your co-workers, your team, your partners, etc. Here are a list of tools that might be useful for your business:
Sales and Marketing Shift - Moving to Pure Digital for Now
As we see conferences and live events get cancelled or postponed, as well as cancel face-to-face sales calls, we must seek new ways to reach out to clients, partners, and ecosystem players in a purely digital and online manner. If you need to ramp up your website, your e-Commerce engine, your CRM and lead generation capture tools, now is the time to do it if at all possible. For some industries, this is just not possible, but for technology and service companies, it might become more of a permanent solution as the uncertainty and timing of the COVID-19 is unknown. As you think through your sales and marketing activities, please consider evaluating the following areas for digital enablement:
Ongoing Engagement & Staying Relevant
Right now consumers are extremely distracted, and businesses are expected to be very cautious. As such, as you think about your new normal, including pushing more into the digital and online experience model, you must remain engaged with customers and clients. That might mean better communications around safety, health concerns, support,and offering clients a "break" during this uncertain time. In addition, you must provide alternatives, solutions, and ideas to support their concerns, especially as it relates to your company, your products/services, and what is changing. If you remain silent and wait to provide special care and assistance, then your clients may lose faith in you as a company. It is important to continue to remain engaged not just in a transactional manner, but also through showing empathy and supporting client concerns.
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