Working Through COVID-19Posted By: Helen Thursday 18th June 2020 Tags: cloud services, computer backups, COVID-19, data recovery, it support, phone systems
On March 23rd 2020 the country stood still as we embarked on what would become, three months of lockdown. Depicted by our Prime Minister as the UK’s biggest threat for decades, each and every one of us was given a part to play. Today we are talking about working through COVID-19 from both a business and individual perspective.
Thank you NHS & Health Care Workers
Before we go any further, we would like to offer massive thanks to every single member of the NHS and all health care workers. The additional time, efforts and energy put into working to care for our country is overwhelming. Putting yourself at the forefront of danger, not seeing your loved ones and children, some for weeks at a time is something we shall forever be grateful for. Thank you to all NHS & health care workers for everything you have done and continue to do during such unprecedented times.
How did we react at LaneSystems?
Quite simply we met lockdown with a ‘safety first’ approach. Keeping our team safe and secure has always been a priority for LaneSystems. Initially we looked at members of the team who could easily work from home and sent them packing straight away (so to speak)! Thankfully, as IT support specialists we are always in a fantastic position to easily facilitate this. As with many companies certain job roles would become difficult and even ineffective to carry out at home. Let’s face it, if a customer’s first point of contact is face-to face with a receptionist, part of this post becomes somewhat redundant during a situation of lockdown. Whilst furloughing members of the team was not necessarily ideal it meant we could continue keeping people safe without employees losing their jobs.
Taking such dire circumstances into consideration, we have provided our team with the ability to work from home, flexible hours and as much support as required.
We knew what was coming!
As mentioned above, our company provides IT support services across the North East of England. A global pandemic equals lockdown. Lockdown equates to many companies closing their doors. Businesses have to continue operating and where possible home working was chosen. This method continues as the norm for many (us included where possible).
Wait for it;
Working from home requires a relevant work station with links to internal systems. Living in a world reliant on technology, the need for computers and secure systems at home was bound to increase and FAST! We’re not part of the NHS. We’re not the police or members of the emergency services but to existing customers and many new, the LaneSystems team quickly became poignant in the success of businesses continuing to operate.
Ramping up IT Support
Of course, working from home comes with its own set of complexities, especially when companies don’t have relevant IT related knowledge. There’s plenty to be considered including the following:
- PC’s & Laptops
- Phone Systems
- IT Security
- Cloud Services
- Computer Backups
- Data Recovery
With companies retreating to the safety of their home in order to work each and every employee needs to be supplied with the right equipment to carry out their job.
PC’s & Laptops
First and foremost, without a machine, little can be achieved. Whilst some of our clients were able to unplug, remove and go, this wasn’t an option for others. Gaining access to PC’s and laptops quickly was one of the first tasks we needed to complete at LaneSystems. Given the contacts, connections and business relationships developed over the last 25 years, access to the best technology is never a problem.
Just because people are no longer in the office doesn’t mean the phone stops ringing. For some, requesting customers contact them via mobile is easy. Others however need internal landlines to be transferred across to mobiles or even home landlines. Ensuring this is done quickly can mean the difference between retention and losing a customer. Not having access to calls could also mean companies are missing out on new business; even during a pandemic.
Yes, it’s important to have direct access to a PC or laptop but without the right security in place people may as well be without machines. Working online anywhere will naturally increase the risk of cyber threats. When properly protected in the workplace, systems are usually covered by firewalls, blacklisted IP addresses and more. Such threats aren’t necessarily covered at home and absolutely should be. With phishing emails up 667% since February, the right security NEEDS to be in place with employees well versed in what potentially harmful emails look like.
Many companies have already taken advantage of Cloud based systems. With the ability to store as much information as required, cloud applications can be accessed from absolutely anywhere in the world. Should an individual need access to shared data, the Cloud is perfect.
Ensuring data and information is backed up is critical to any business. Working in lockdown is challenging enough without the threat of losing intelligence. Computer backups are worth their weight in gold. Should you come up against a virus or hack, data is stored securely, ready to be reproduced once issues are resolved.
Finding yourself in the midst of a data loss can be somewhat terrifying. Adding COVID-19 into the mix means stress levels are already intensified. Why wouldn’t you want to feel safe in the knowledge that you’re covered with a solid data recovery policy?
Each of the above is fundamental to the smooth running of a business both from the office and remotely.
How we coped;
Having put the safety and health at the forefront of our business we have been able to push forwards successfully. Since March 23rd 2020 the LaneSystems technicians have worked tirelessly to ensure existing clients and new customers have direct access to the exact systems needed.
Of course, it’s not over yet. As we continue easing out of lockdown the way we work continues to adapt. COVID-19 has proven difficult for so many companies and we are here to help ease the burden with the right IT support. From advice to actual services our team are more than willing to help. At times like this we must pull together.
Remember to keep washing your hands, wear masks if necessary and work from home when possible. We WILL beat this.