In the previous week, the COVID-19 outbreak has made companies to support remote work. It has been fairly easy for larger companies with established remote work policies and practices to enable their workers to work from home.
so also, for some companies that have not actively allowed their workers to work remotely, the situation can be complicated. What does it require for a company to enable working from home?
HOW DO YOU WORK AT HOME?
1. Ensure that you have devices that fit your needs.
Most smartphones and laptops are good enough for general tasks, like answering emails or preparing a sales presentation. However, some roles, like software development, require more powerful devices that can run heavy applications.
Ensuring workers to choose their own device (CYOD) might be a smart choice. However, you can also compile a list of devices that fit your organization’s budget and that enable your employees to work productively. If employees prefer to use personal devices, device and data security can be ensured by enrolling devices to an MDM platform. This can be done easily by sending an enrollment message via email or SMS.
moreover, you should ensure that everyone has the proper accessories for virtual collaboration. Newer laptops have built-in webcams and microphones, but a headset might be useful if you work in a noisy space and need to attend conference calls.
2. Manage devices easier with MDM.
With a Mobile Device Management (MDM) platform, organizations can easily manage and secure their devices and data by enforcing consistent business policies for all employees. You can, for example, ensure that devices are configured correctly and protected with a strong password, and define which settings, apps, and files should be installed automatically on devices.
With MDM, organizations can provision devices “hands-free” with no involvement from employees, ensuring that devices are immediately ready for use. When all Android, Windows, iOS, and macOS devices are supported by a single MDM platform, administering devices is easier.
3. Give employees access to necessary apps and data.
When working from home, employees need to know that certain applications and company files are easily accessible so that they can get their work done without interruption. With MDM, companies can make sure that their employees have the right technology installed and up-and-running on devices by distributing applications remotely. If you need to provide access to your company’s internal network, you can do that by installing VPN settings to devices via MDM.
4. Ensure sufficient bandwidth.
When employees are not connected to your company’s internal network, they should use either a password-protected home network or a mobile hotspot. To maximize data security, public and open Wi-Fi should not be used. If you have a bandwidth limit, make sure that your plan includes enough data. If you are spending most of your day in video calls, you might need to upgrade.
5. Secure devices and data remotely.
MDM software helps organizations to ensure device and data security from the cloud. You can set password requirements for devices, blacklist possibly harmful applications, and separate work and private data. And in case a device gets lost, you can lock and wipe it remotely.
It is also important to make sure that your devices and software are always up to date, and that you have a plan for delivering necessary updates as they become available.
6. Encourage virtual collaboration.
Communication is key. Make sure that all employees have the right tools to exchange information and be productive. Agree on mutual ways of communicating and stay in touch with colleagues by scheduling some regular catch-ups. If you are used to being able to chat about work at the water cooler, keep those opportunities alive using your collaboration tools.
In addition to basic productivity tools like Microsoft Office 365, companies should make collaboration tools, such as Slack, Teams, Skype, Zoom, and Trello available for their employees. Currently, Microsoft and Google are giving away their enterprise-level conferencing tools, Teams and G Suite Hangouts Meet, respectively, for free for a limited time.
Having the appropriate applications in place to conduct virtual meetings encourages employees to feel connected and helps build a unified company culture.
7. Be realistic with what your team can achieve remotely.
People tend to work differently at home than they do in the office. Some might be more productive at home while others struggle to maintain a balanced schedule. If you are used to working with your team face-to-face, make sure to schedule regular virtual meetings and agree on the tasks that you can all focus on individually. Writing down personal to-do lists for each day may help your team stay focused when working from home.
For some, being able to accomplish everything they might do in the office, from home, may not be possible. Be honest with yourself and your coworkers about what is and isn’t possible from home – and concentrate on what you can do.
Work from home laptop deals
Surface Laptop 3 (Core i5): was $1,299 now $999 @ MicrosoftThe Editors’ Choice Surface Laptop 3 is $300 off at Microsoft. That’s the second lowest price we’ve ever seen for Microsoft’s premium laptop. It packs a 13.5-inch display, an Intel Core i5-1035G7 CPU, 8GB of RAM and a 256 SSD. View Deal
Dell XPS 13 (7390): was $1,099 now $829 @ Dell
This model Dell XPS 13 (7390) laptops packs a 13.3-inch 1080p display, a Core i5-10210U CPU, 8GB of RAM and 256GB SSD. Use Dell coupon code, “EXTRA17” to drop its price down to $829.View Deal
MacBook Pro 13″ (256GB): was $1,499 now $1,299 @ AmazonThe 13-inch MacBook Pro gives you loads of power in a super-portable — and stylish — chassis. For a limited time, the Core i5 model is $200 off at Amazon. Best Buy offers the same price.
Dell Inspiron 13 5000 Laptop: was $809 now $580 @ DellThisInspiron 13 5000 (5391)laptophas a 13.3-inch (1920 x 1080) display, 10th Gen Core i5-10210U CPU, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD. Save $280 via coupon, “EXTRA17”. View Deal
Work from home monitor deals
Dell UltraSharp U2412M 24″ Monitor: was $349 now $146 @ AmazonThis 24-inch 1920 x 1200 LED-backlit display offers crystal clear viewing. Connectivity-wise, you get a DVI-D port, display port, VGA port, a USB 2.0 upstream port and four USB downstream ports. View Deal
Samsung 32″ FHD Curved monitor: was $249 now $169 @ WalmartThe Samsung 32″ FHD Curved Multimedia Monitor is great for gaming and streaming TV shows and movies. It’s one of the least-expensive 32-inch Samsung monitors we’ve ever seen. View Deal
Acer S241HL 24″ Monitor: was $139 now $109 @ AmazonThis Acer monitor has a 1920 x 1080 resolution, slim LED design and built-in speakers. At $30 off, it’s the lowest price we’ve ever seen for this monitor.
HP 27er 27″ LED Monitor: was $249 now $196 @ AmazonThe HP 27er 1080p monitor is thin, sleek and lightweight. With VGA and 2 HDMI ports with HDCP, it’s ideal for laptops and multi-monitor setups. Amazon has it on sale for $53 off its regular price.
Home networking deals
Working from home requires a stable internet connection. That’s where a whole home mesh router comes in. This system woks with your cable modem to blanket your home with WiFi, eliminating buffering and dead zones.
Netgear WiFi Range Extender EX2700: was $31 now $19 @ AmazonThe Netgear WiFi range extender adds coverage for up to 600 sq. ft. It supports up to 10 devices like laptops, smartphones, tablets and more. It works with your cable modem and provides WiFi speeds up to 300Mps.
Netgear R6330 AC1600 Smart WiFi Router: was $79 now $62 @ AmazonThis dual-band gigabit router packs AC1600 WiFi 300+1300Mbps speeds and high-power external antennas for an ultrafast and reliable Internet connection. It’s now $17 off, which is an all-time low price.
Tenda Whole Home Mesh WiFi System (3 Pack): was $199 now $129 @ AmazonThis WiFi system replaces your traditional router and supports multiple connected devices at one. It works with your ISP modem to blanket up to 6000 sq.ft with reliable WiFi.
TP-Link Deco Whole Home Mesh WiFi System: was $299 now $152 @ AmazonSay goodbye to dead zones and buffering for good with the Deco M5 whole home WiFi system. It covers up to 5,500 sq. ft and supports up to 100+ connected devices.
Work from home accessories
Investing in the right PC accessories can help make working from home more comfortable. An ergonomic keyboard reduces risk of fatigue and promotes neutral wrist posture. Meanwhile, an wireless over-ear headset lets you take calls away from your PC, hands-free.
Microsoft Ergonomic Keyboard: was $59 now $44 @ Best BuyThis ergonomic Microsoft keyboard features a cushioned palm rest covered in premium fabric for all-day comfort. For a limited time, it’s $15 off at Best Buy.
Logitech MK270 Wireless Keyboard and Mouse: was $29 now $22 @ AmazonThis wireless keyboard and mouse bundle includes a full size keyboard and precision mouse. Advanced 2.4 GHz wireless technology with 128-bit AES encryption offers a fast and secure connection.
Logitech H600 Wireless Headset: was $69 now $36 @ AmazonRoam freely as you chat and listen up to 33 ft away with the Logitech H600 wireless headset. Laser-tuned speaker drivers and a noise-cancelling mic ensure crystal clear calls. Best Buy offers this headset for $14 more but will price match.
Seagate 1TB Mobile Drive for Chromebook: was $59 now $49 @ Best BuyInstantly add 1TB of storage to your Chromebook, Windows or Mac with this Seagate Mobile Drive. It requires no formatting and offers simple drag and drop functionality with fast data transfer rates up to 5 Gbps via USB 3.0.
WD 2TB My Passport External Hard Drive: was $79 now $59 @ Best BuyThis 2TB portable drive is portable, supports USB 3.0/2.0 connectivity, and 256-bit hardware encryption. It’s plug and play PC and Mac ready.
Brother Compact Monochrome Laser Printer: was $169.99 now $99.99 @ AmazonThis Brother Monochrome Laser Printer (HLL2395DW) features a scan glass flatbed for quick copying and scanning. It has a 250 sheet capacity, prints 36 ppm and supports wireless printing the the Cloud.
Austere VII Series Power 6-Outlet: for $179 @ AmazonThe Austere VII series outlet offers a safe way to power 4K TVs, home audio systems, tablets and laptops. Isolated outlet filtration ensures flawless a/v output while flameless MOV protection prevents electrical fire.