With 2021 arriving and the new financial year at it’s start, the worries of 2020 have not faded away. Many companies and organizations have shut shop due to their inability to adapt with the new normal. All business small and large need to be agile and quick in recognizing the new trends and restructuring their operation systems accordingly.
The global lockdown of 2020 brought with it the need for employees to work from home. Most service oriented businesses were able to switch to the work from home system easily. In fact it even brought down operation costs and reduced work around time for many business process outsourcing companies. The lockdown was a turning point of a much awaited change in the way these organizations function.
SMEs (small and medium enterprises) all around India were able to manage themselves and survive. Apart from manufacturing and processing oriented organizations, most organizations were able to work from home in 2020.
Having said this, there are many problems with work from home that regular SMEs do not realize exist. These problems create loss in time, data and also theft of information. In this article we will use the last financial years experience to analyze these problems and fix them soon so that our organizations function efficiently.
Problem 1: Using personal email ids
SMEs use personal email ids for regular business integrations such as order booking, purchasing, internal communications etc. Even in an office environment, this practice should not be encouraged.
Create your own company email id and have employees switch to the official email ids. All official communication by all IDs can be read by the business owner at any time and anywhere. This enables you as a business owner to stay on top of all that is happening in your company without your employees knowing about it.
Problem 2: Downloading official data on personal computers
This is a practice that seems unavoidable. An employee will need to download and again upload data from email ids to keep working from home. Some businesses choose to save on the cost of equipment and allow the employees to work from personal laptops or computers. Large organizations never allow this because personal computers and laptops are not maintained correctly and might be disposed away without the needed data wipes to erase sensitive and confidential information of the organization.
SME promoters and directors should budget the expense to hire a team of tech experts that can source the right hardware for their employees. This team would be responsible for tagging and tracking the location of these systems, keep track of the data on them and schedule regular maintenance for them as well. This practice will eliminate the threat of downloaded data being stolen and also improve work efficiency.
Problem 3: Using multiple devices to access cloud based resources
Cloud based systems went up in demand with the work from home revolution. It makes total sense to use cloud based systems to share files and work as a team from remote locations. You can use Google Sheets with more than 1 person accessing the information on the system and hence reducing file sharing and keeping the full team updated on the changes. This the one of the most widely used cloud based systems today.
This also enables you to access the sheet or any other form of data on the cloud using any device at your disposal. Employees have a tendency to use their personal smartphones to access these sheets and even download them or share them indiscriminately on WhatsApp with other team mates. This is a violation of data security protocol. The organisation must have a system in place that does not allow the employee to access work based emails using other devices other than the company device.
Problem 4: Going forward with limited knowledge
Many SMEs have switched to work from home systems without full knowledge of the system they would ideally want in place. Most organisations are looking at the short term goals of getting work done during these tough times and keeping a blind eye on the data security issues that are right in front of them.
SMEs should either hire a good agency that can advise and implement these systems for them or try to do it themselves. Without the right security system in place, mistakes can cause irreparable damage. 110 IDEAS has implemented these systems for our clients and are more than happy to advice new clients on the same as well.