Working from home has been a dream for many people in the previous years. Moreover, a significant part of the population didn’t even know what’s remote work and everything it entails. But, with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, many people are asking themselves, will remote work be the new normal?
And if so, how to best adapt to a full-time career working from the living room? Apart from some challenges revolving around the feasibility of working from home, it’s also important to address the topic of remote work and cybersecurity.
In this article, we’ll discuss the challenges that remote work brings to the modern workplace. More importantly, we’ll also share with you ten valuable tips for remote working from home that will help enhance your productivity and safety in your new work environment.
Challenges with Remote Work
Remote work is undoubtedly practical and time-saving in many regards. However, it also brings about a long list of potential challenges and issues. Here are the most important challenges with remote work that are worth considering:
- Communication - This aspect of the workplace is a challenge even in regular, non-remote working conditions. But, with issues like schedule flexibility, especially when there are employees in different time zones, communication can easily become an issue.
- Perceptibility of Work - It’s no secret that most business owners and managers like to see their staff working. So, for some managers, when they can’t see their remote team, they tend to think that the employees are often not as productive as they should be. While this is often far from the truth, it is a prevalent issue in many organizations.
- Technology - In an office setting, every employee works on the computer and with the software that the business has provided. In a remote setting, this is rarely the case. Employees use their own devices that they have at their disposal. This can create many issues, slow down productivity, and lead to a poorly functioning business.
- Security - When organizing a business with remote workers, safety is undoubtedly one of the most significant challenges. When working from their homes, employees often use their devices, which can be a gateway for a major security breach. Moreover, employees with a lack of training or a lack of cybersecurity knowledge may be subject to attacks and unknowingly expose their business credentials to attackers.
- Project Management - Lastly, from the employees’ perspective, juggling a stable work-life balance when working from home can be a considerable challenge. Some employees may feel isolated, while others might feel like they can’t handle the workload. So, prioritizing tasks and maintaining just the right amount of workload is often an issue.
Productivity Tips for Remote Workers
As discussed above, there certainly are many productivity challenges for remote workers. We’ve done the research and summed up the best tips for remote work that go a long way in increasing remote work productivity. So, here are the 5 best productivity tips for remote workers:
1. Use a Reliable Communication Tool
One of the most important challenges you have to resolve is finding how to connect remote employees conveniently. For this, there’s only one right answer. Find the right apps for remote work that function best for your business.
Fortunately, nowadays, there are many great communication tools you can use. To list a few of the most popular ones, Slack, Zoom, and Skype are certainly at the top of the list.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that all employees should be constantly available and talking to each other. But, having channels through which you can brainstorm and consult promptly makes all the difference.
2. Use Project Management Apps
Apart from picking a business-wide communication tool you and your team will use, consider introducing a project management app. Organization and productivity go hand in hand, and a project management app is the best way to obtain both aspects.
In most cases, creating an organized remote workplace environment simply boils down to picking the right organizational tools. Some of the most popular project management apps that we recommend are Slack and Trello.
3. Set Realistic Basic Norms
When organizing your employees remotely, an effective way to ensure all projects get completed without pressuring your staff is to set some realistic ground rules. Doing so is also an excellent way to monitor how much work gets done on a daily/weekly basis, and adjust the workload if necessary.
On the other hand, you should also be flexible enough to accept some schedule change requests from your employees. If they have children or live with roommates and cannot work at certain times, you need to find a way to accommodate their schedule to a degree.
4. Create Training and Learning Opportunities
It’s easy for both bosses and employees to get complacent in a remote workplace environment. So, to ensure team unity and maintain a high standard of productivity and efficiency, consider organizing different development courses.
Seminars and courses were a hugely popular thing in the pre-pandemic business world, so there’s no reason why they should be overlooked in the modern remote work environment. Not only do they help educate the employees and teach them various skills, but they often help build camaraderie within the team, directly increasing productivity.
5. Have a Dress Code
Arguably the biggest advantage of working from home is that you can work in your pajamas. However, if you run a highly motivated, productive, and successful business, consider having a dress code for the Zoom and Skype meetings.
This doesn’t have to be a full three-piece suit or anything like that. But, having at least some sort of dress code can have a big impact on getting the employees out of “relax mode” and into “work mode”, resulting in more productivity.
Safety Tips for Remote Workers
Productivity Tips for Remote Workers
Apart from the productivity tips and tricks for remote work, it’s also essential to consider the cybersecurity aspects of such a work environment. With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at the best safety tips for remote workers:
1. Implement IAM and MFA
An IAM platform is an excellent tool for monitoring and managing secure access to your business’ data. If you want to go a step further, it’s also smart to introduce MFA (Multi-Factor Authentication). This form of authentication will require users to confirm their identity through a different method before gaining access.
2. Use a Strong Antivirus
The yearly estimated global damage to businesses caused by cybercrime is measured in millions of dollars. Ransomware attacks, phishing, DDoSing, malware, and spyware are just some of the best-known threats. But, as luck would have it, you can protect against all of these threats with a robust antivirus. So, make sure that you and all of your employees have one on your work devices.
3. Use VPNs
Virtual Private Networks, or VPNs, are a great way to protect valuable business and personal information when working remotely. This is because VPNs add an extra security layer over the user’s connection by sending the information through an encrypted tunnel. That way, even if there are hackers monitoring your or your employees’ network, they won’t be able to see and extract any usable data.
4. Introduce Endpoint Management
Endpoint management includes authenticating and controlling access rights of all endpoint devices of a particular network. As the network owner, you can restrict access only to authorized devices and users. Additionally, you can also apply and monitor different endpoint security policies throughout the network to ensure no unwanted access attempts go through.
5. Keep Passwords Strong and Private
Lastly, one of the simplest ways to obtain strong cybersecurity is to have strong passwords. Unfortunately, many employees overlook this. Moreover, a big percentage of them also use the same password for multiple accounts and devices.
The best thing you can do is educate your workers on the importance of strong passwords. Additionally, organize occasional meetings on this topic and consider using password management tools.
Hopefully, the ten remote work tips for employees we’ve shared with you on this page have provided you with plenty of useful information to increase your business’ productivity and safety.
If you want to ensure maximum security and undisturbed productivity for your remote working team, the Hideez Authentication Service is the perfect solution. This service enables you to replace traditional passwords with passwordless biometric logins with mobile apps or security keys.
We also provide the in-house Hideez Key, which you can use both for business and personal security. This key stores all personal credentials in an encrypted vault more secure than any cloud password manager. Moreover, you can also use it to fill in logins and passwords automatically, generate new strong passwords or OTPs for 2FA, and even provide proximity logins and logouts for Windows computers.
Besides applying the tips for remote working teams, we encourage you to schedule a demo with us or request a free 30-day trial of the Hideez server. Secure your workplace and protect your employees with our elegant and sophisticated service!