Since the COVID-19 pandemic, many companies have adopted a remote work setup, allowing employees to perform their tasks from home. But now that most COVID-related restrictions have been lifted across the United States, businesses are planning their return to the office. However, this transition won’t be as easy as turning on office computers and servers. Here are a few technology issues you might encounter when your team goes back to the workplace and how you can deal with them.
1. Poor internet connection
When your company shifted to a remote work setup, you might have downgraded your office's internet plan to reallocate finances toward other expenses. Or perhaps your organization's headcount increased while everyone was working remotely.
To ensure a smooth return to the office, have your IT team check the office’s internet connection and see if it can accommodate the number of devices that will be connecting to the network. If not, you may need to upgrade your subscription or switch to a better service provider. You should consider installing a Wi-Fi extender or booster as well to ensure that there’s enough signal coverage for everyone in the office.
2. Personal devices used for work and non-work-related matters
Some remote workers may have used their personal devices for work, as they might prefer a better or more familiar solution than company-provided equipment. While this is a convenient solution, this poses security risks to them and the organization. This is because personal devices are often less secure than company-provided ones. For instance, personal devices typically have weaker password protection, which can put your company at risk of data breaches.
If your employees want to continue using their personal devices when they return to the office, they must register these in your IT system first. This way, your IT team can scan and monitor these devices for potential issues and implement the necessary security measures. Alternatively, you can require your employees to transfer all work-related data and applications to a company-permitted device.
3. Lack of software updates and security patches
Your remote staff may not have been diligent about patching and updating software. The problem with this is that when devices and programs are outdated, threat actors can exploit their vulnerabilities to steal sensitive information and infect your IT systems with malware.
To mitigate this risk, have your employees update their programs and operating systems as well as security solutions, such as antivirus software and firewalls. Remind your workers that installing updates as soon as they become available not only protects company data from various cyberthreats, but it also reduces the IT department’s work.
4. Unvetted applications
Your employees may have found new programs to help them work efficiently while working remotely, so they may want to continue using these when they return to the office. However, some of these tools may not have been vetted by your IT team, so these may introduce new security risks.
Should you decide to adopt these applications, your IT team needs to implement the necessary backup procedures, security measures, and identity access management practices. This way, you can avoid data breaches and other security risks.
5. Poor security habits
Your staff may have picked up harmful work from home habits, such as not locking their computer when walking away from their desk, reusing passwords across different accounts, or not using your corporate virtual private network.
Before your employees return to the office, have them undergo cybersecurity awareness training. This will help them develop good habits like refraining from opening suspicious emails and links, using multifactor authentication, and connecting to a secure network before accessing critical data. Use a combination of lectures, demonstrations, and practical exercises so your employees process the lessons better.
Before your employees return to the office, it’s imperative that you ensure your IT infrastructure is running properly. Complete Document Solutions can help keep it at peak performance round the clock with proactive maintenance, continuous monitoring, and fast, reliable support. Get a FREE network and IT consultation from us today.