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The commercial landscape has changed, and looks set to remain changed for at least the foreseeable future. All over the country (and indeed the world) businesses of all shapes and sizes grapple with a new set of problems that seem likely to extend well beyond the closing months of 2020. The problem of how to engage customers that are more money-conscious than ever and even more guarded about how they spend it. The problem of maintaining productivity at a time when operations have had to change dramatically. And, of course, the problem of how to keep your remote team motivated, engaged and (above all) protected so that your business can emerge stronger than ever in the wake of COVID-19.

While remote teams can be more productive than their on-site counterparts, they also represent a new set of vulnerabilities, against which businesses will need to guard. And to protect them, you’ll need to invest in smoothing the transition to their new normal. Here are 4 essential tools to support and protect remote employees…

 

A potent cybersecurity infrastructure

 

Remote workers bring with them a new dimension of cybersecurity vulnerability. One that you’ll need to establish an infrastructure to prevent. Don’t make the mistake of assuming that your business is so small that it’ll fly under the radar of cyber criminals. These career opportunists have been hard at work for months trying to turn the pandemic to their advantage by targeting vulnerable small businesses just like yours. 

 

Even if you had adequate on-site cyber security, you’ll likely need to invest in a new infrastructure to protect remote teams. A VPN combined with a cloud-based or hybrid infrastructure are vital in keep remote employees safe. Yet, worryingly, 1 in 3 employees do not use a VPN to connect to their company network from home. 

 

HR Investigations software

 

This new way of working will preclude your employees from sharing a workspace for the foreseeable future. But that doesn’t mean it precludes them from having problems and grievances that require the attention of your HR department. With the right HR investigation software, you can ensure that remote employees have exactly the same protections that they had on-site. Demonstrating that you are committed to  providing transparency and ensuring their wellbeing, even when you no longer share a physical space.

 

An efficient communications infrastructure

 

Clear and efficient communication is central to happy and productive working days. But when employees are working remotely, they risk communications inefficiencies that could damage their productivity. Not to mention running up high phone bills. 

 

Make sure they have a robust, reliable and efficient communications infrastructure that helps them to feel connected while also ensuring that they don’t need to trawl through dozens of texts and emails to find a key date, figure or instruction. 

 

An Employee Recognition Platform

 

Finally, you need to protect employees from the potential slump in productivity and engagement that they can encounter when working remotely, as well as the frustration and anxiety that this can entail. An employee recognition platform is a great way to celebrate achievements, share best practice and help all employees feel more engaged with their work and their team. 

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