Managing a Remote Workforce

With the spread of COVID-19, many companies are growing concerned about the well-being of employees and encouraging them to stay home to reduce the spread of the illness. Readying a strong remote workforce will keep your business running smoothly with minimal disruption.
As your IT managed services provider, LogicTCG will work with you to ensure that your remote workforce maintains the same level of compliance and security as if they were in an office environment. Some of your staff may have little experience working remotely, but situations may require them to pivot in this direction, and we need to be prepared to set them and support their needs.

Prepare your remote workforce with security awareness

Besides using the latest security tools and solutions, the most powerful defense against cyberthreats when building a secure remote workforce is the end users themselves. Making sure that staff is thinking and acting with security in mind is essential. Everybody must be diligent regarding attacks targeting remote workers, like phishing scams, fraudulent VPN messages, and more. 
A common tactic for bad actors is to capitalize on issues or events that trigger a gut response, namely fear, in the reader. Email subject lines like ‘Corona News Flash’ or ‘X New Cases in (Insert City Here)’ stoke the flames of uneasiness and try to get a user to click without investigating if the email is credible.
There are easy ways for an end user to spot a phishing email. LogicTCG will continue to send cybersecurity updates and security measures to take during this transition. These added security measures may seem like overkill. Please make sure all staff understand why the added measures are important for protecting critical data so they are more likely to implement them.

Access to mission-critical applications and documents

LogicTCG will work with you to ensure staff has full access to the documents and applications needed to complete their work remotely. A strong remote workforce needs access to their company cloud to perform critical job functions. Please take full advantage of your organization’s preferred cloud service (i.e. Dropbox, Google Drive, One Drive).

Connect securely

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Your organization may have a Virtual Private Network (VPN), which provides a secure, direct link to your servers. A VPN is a nice base layer of security for a remote workforce.
A remote workforce is just that — remote. They may not work from home. Instead, they may spend some time at a coffee shop, library, or other public area with free WiFi. When using a free internet connection, it allows others to see exactly what you are doing on your device and potentially steal vital information if users are not careful.
Please encourage staff to access your VPN from home rather than on public internet.

Establish communication systems

The obvious drawback of remote work is the inability for staff to have face-to-face interactions with their colleagues. As technology has advanced, the once high barriers of long-distance communication and collaboration have been taken down. To keep teamwork alive for your remote workforce, using secure and reliable communication systems are crucial.
There are dozens of communications tools at your disposal for a remote workforce that will encourage long-distance collaboration and teamwork. Please take advantage of applications like Google Hangouts, Slack, or Microsoft Teams to enable quick-chat, group-chat, and staff communications. Your organization may also have access to applications like Zoom or GoToMeeting for setting up video conferencing.

Holding meetings and calls while working remote

The chat and conferencing programs you use to stay in touch should offer virtual face-to-face touch points to mimic an office setting. The programs available allow for video conferencing, so your staff won’t miss a beat with meetings. Encourage them to implement a camera-on policy, so they can have the same face-to-face touch points they would have if everyone were in the office. Send out meeting agendas ahead of time so everyone can prepare and stay focused.
Despite everyone working from a remote location, it is within your best interest to replicate the in-office feeling for meetings and calls. It is helpful to send out agendas, notes, or anything else well ahead of the meeting start time to help everyone prepare and stay on topic.