Although possibly premature, as a business we must start to think about what we need to put in place for the eventual return to work of our employees.
The Government has issued guidelines and there will be many comments in the press over the coming months, with suggestions about how we can stagger our return and ensure employees safety.
There will be guidance as to whether we:
- Supply PPE equipment for all employees
- Install barriers between desks
- Place floor markings to show 2m distances
- Stagger arrival times to avoid crowding
- Allow vulnerable employees to continue to work from home
- Equip those employees who visit sites with extra PPE
- Create a check list for all those employees who visit client sites to ensure they are entering a safe environment and where they are unsure or uncomfortable allowing them to refuse to attend on site
And I'm sure many more.
Check you IT is up to date and nothing has expired
In addition to all the guidelines and the new equipment and policies we will have to put in place we do need to think about the IT that has possibly been left dormant for several months.
Some people have been working remotely whilst others have closed their offices completely.
In either instance it is worth planning an IT check before everyone returns to the office.
All Servers should be checked to ensure they have the latest Security Patches and the Anti-virus software is up to date and hasn’t expired. Also check the Backups are still running and there is a latest one available before everyone returns.
PCs should be logged in as each user and the emails synchronized. If the PCs have been off for a longtime then this can take a while. Check that all the security updates have been done and the Anti-virus is up to date.
Ensure the PCs can access the internet and the Servers as if the switches and routers have been left on all this time they may have failed.
User passwords could be reset as they may have expired. If there is a Server, the password can be set to a generic one and the user forced to create a new one at first login.
Passwords are a potential weak link in the security of a company so it might be worth considering implementing a Password Manager going forward. These programs, like 1Password, allow each user to have a personal Vault and access to shared vaults for the Company. They only have access to the vaults they are assigned. By storing passwords within these sorts of programs it allows them to be more complex as they can be copied and revealed if forgotten.
Save time and avoid stress by having everything as up to date as possible
Although none of this is essential it could possibly save a lot of time and stop the need for numerous support calls to your IT Support Company.
There will be enough stress on the first day back without adding the delay in PCs starting as they do updates or the emails that have arrived over the months take 2 hours to synchronise down to the PC.
Just one more thing to consider over the next few weeks as we contemplate returning to something more normal.
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As a Director of Optima Systems Ltd Jay is responsible for overseeing Sales and Marketing, Human Resources, Customer Relations and Account Management. In addition, Jay is responsible for the design, development, efficiency and smooth running of the IT Networks of our clients, as well as our own technical infrastructure. More about Jay.