As news warns the coronavirus is spreading into different regions, more and more companies are preparing to work remotely or at least look at the idea of doing so. A bunch of companies have already taken action for their workforce to work remotely. Tech giants like Twitter, Google, Amazon and Facebook are taking the lead and told their employees to work from home if they can. Businesses whose applications and/or desktops are operating in the cloud have the foundation ready to continue operations and keep their employees healthy.
Deciding whether to encourage your team to work from home can be a challenge. Especially if you don’t have the appropriate systems in place to support their work and keep everyone connected. Keeping your team healthy and productive should both be your highest priorities. A sick workforce isn’t a productive one.
Here are some immediate precautions you can take:
- Cancel international and domestic travel for employees.
- Utilize video conferencing rather than in person meetings.
- Put a hold on allowing guests into your offices.
There are also some easy steps to start gearing your company up to create a remote workforce environment. Management needs prepare for the event that there may be a pandemic.
Steps you can begin taking:
- Take advantage of free trials being offering by Microsoft, Cisco, Zoom, Google & LogmeIn. These tech companies are helping small businesses prepare quickly to get employees working remotely. See the list here: https://www.inc.com/jason-aten/these-5-tech-companies-are-providing-free-remote-working-tools-during-coronavirus-outbreak.html
- Devise a plan to respond to public health concerns. Communicate your plan to your employees and educate them on prevention.
- Begin assessing different technologies to help your team work remotely. Maybe consider migrating to Office365 for email, document sharing, document hosting and more. Take a look at your on-premise business applications such as your accounting software and ERP systems and move them to the cloud. This will at least help you prepare for the future when something else may arise.
Whatever action you take today, will help you prepare your business for a better tomorrow.
For more information on up-to-date coronavirus information please use the below resources:
Pennsylvania Preparedness Guide: https://www.ready.pa.gov/BeInformed/EmergencyPreparednessGuide/Documents/PAEmergencyPreparednessGuide.pdf
U.S. & Worldwide: CDC https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/faq.html
What to do if you’re sick: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/downloads/sick-with-2019-nCoV-fact-sheet.pdf