We are now officially in what is being called the second wave of Covid-19. The reality is that these waves so far are smaller than prior pandemics, in most part to the fast-moving responses of governments and businesses in Canada. The impact when these waves hit can be tremendous though due to these responses (shutdowns, social distancing orders, capacity limitations, localized isolations, etc.). Unlike a gentle wave, these effects are more like riptides and if you are not prepared for it, they will pull your business under.
With the numbers rising again, and new response measures in place, employers are continuing to embrace work from home arrangements. Some smaller companies have returned to the office, and a few have a date set in mind for a potential return, but many want to keep the work from home regime alive and are in no rush to have their employers return to the office, especially with all the remaining uncertainty.
We are going to have to prepare for at least some or all our offices to be in lockdown over the next year. As waves of the pandemic come through your staff may have to self isolate because one of their kids encountered another kid at their school. They may have come into the office and had contact with other staff members. Your local community may be shifted back to a Stage 2 or Stage 1 lockdown to prevent community spread of the virus.
The key to remember is that you will have no control over this, and neither will your staff.
Collaboration tools have moved from “nice to have” to MUST haves, and you must have the right tools for your organization - not just what may be conveniently available at the time. What tools can allow your team to work as seamlessly as they would in the office? Can GoToMeeting sufficiently replace in person meetings? If you need to host a larger event, will you invest in GoToWebinar? Are Jive phone systems, and Microsoft Teams the right tools to allow continuous communication throughout your organization? If so, you need to ensure your team, and organization is equipped with these tools from the comfort of their own home offices.
Having your entire team working from home, or potentially “anywhere” can propose some problems. The biggest problem being security, which is closely followed by bandwidth. With your team working away from the office, your organization is going to have more files moving across the network. This is going to cause a slower and more painful user experience, and because of these users are going to begin taking shortcuts that could potentially compromise security. Creating a Virtual Desktop may be one of the most important things you do for your employees and your organization. Your team will have access to your organization's network so they can safely access and share documents with one another in a protected environment no matter where they are working from.
Lastly, since this pandemic has gone on for much longer than anyone had initially anticipated it is crucial to ensure your team is comfortable in their home-office. Providing your employees with the right tools such as laptops, webcams, printers, phones, and headsets could make all the difference within their day to day duties and allow the work from home experience to not feel so far away from the reality of working in office.
TIG has a team of experts who can help you put together a unique plan for your organization. We will work with you to learn more about your organization, what your goals and needs are, if they have changed, and deliver a full rounded package of products and services that will have you and your team prepared for long-term success.