Business owners are faced with challenges every day. As leaders of our community, we are continually reinventing the wheel to success. The coronavirus is a new challenge for our businesses, and we can utilize technology to overcome some disruptions. Technology has advanced enough to allow you to work from home and continue your business as usual. Also, internet providers such as SparkLight announced that they would provide all users with unlimited data without caps, which means you will not be penalized if you are sending/receiving too much data.
Here are some options and solutions for remote home working.
VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, phone systems allow you to pick up your office phone and connect it directly into your home network. The phone will continue to ring and work as if it is at your office. If you have multiple phones, you can have your staff members take their desk phones with them and connect to their home networks as well.
If you don’t have a VoIP phone system, call your telephone provider and see if your business phones can be forwarded to a cell phone or your home phone. You can continue to communicate with your clients and staff with these changes and fixes.
There are many services where you can remotely access your business computer and network.
If your firewall supports it, a VPN is an incredible ability to connect networks to give access to your business network from your home computer. Once your computer connects to the VPN, it behaves as if it is part of your business network. You will have access to servers, network drives, files and printers. A VPN is not a solution for everyone. A conversation with your IT provider is best to see if you can, or need, a VPN.
Remote controlling your business computer is another option. Services from companies such as Splashtop, Logmein and GoToMyPC are all great solutions. What these services offer is a secure, direct connection to the computer you want to control. The screen of your computer will be “streamed” to your home computer, and as you move the mouse from your home computer, the mouse on the remote work computer will move in tandem. So, if your documents are on your work computer, you can remotely access your business computer and work directly on your files.
Video Conferencing with individuals and groups is an excellent means of communication. Video conference with clients, staff and vendors. ZOOM is a popular platform that is offering free services to schools during these times. ZOOM offers daily webinars to educate people on how to use the service and to see if it is a fit for your business.
Another option if you are a subscriber to Microsoft Office 365 is Teams. Teams is a platform where your team can collaborate on documents, video conference together, chat and share documents. You can include people from outside your organization to join in as well.
These are just some of the options available, and your IT Provider will undoubtedly offer plenty of advice on what works best with your organization. QCBN
By Theo Soumilas