As remote work adoption reaches new heights for businesses around the globe, business leaders are worried about the limited monitoring and oversight created by this distant work arrangement.
And understandably so: not only are employees now operating without physical visibility, but they’re also using new personal devices, wireless networks, and other technology that haven’t necessarily been vetted or secured by their company.
If you’re developing a new remote work strategy or modifying an existing one to better support employees and operations, it’s important to consider the value of remote monitoring. Here’s a look at the role that remote monitoring can play in your company’s remote work strategy, the benefits it can deliver, and how to incorporate it into your company’s approach to remote work.
The Risks of Remote Work Arrangements
Remote work can offer a secure, productive, and flexible approach to managing employees and teams—as long as you have the right infrastructure in place. Remote work policies are an important part of that process, but remote monitoring is the best way to ensure that employees follow those policies.
When remote work oversight is lacking, employees become a greater liability to their companies by failing to meet data security protocols. Employees may be connecting to the company server through unsecured networks or personal devices that may be corrupted by malware, exposing your company’s data. Numerous cybersecurity research surveys have cited employee mistakes as the single greatest source of security breaches.
At the same time, remote work makes it easier for employees to cut corners on their workloads. This behavior is much easier to detect in a traditional office, but in a remote work environment, businesses may struggle to identify and address reduced productivity or performance. This means that a reduction in productivity in a remote work environment may only become apparent once it has already impacted your company’s output or profit margins.
When problems develop—such as a security breach or a technical issue that interferes with an employee’s ability to work—the remote work environment can slow down your company’s response. IT help tickets may increase, and the processes for addressing these issues may take longer.
Although remote work offers flexibility to workers, it can dramatically limit your company’s agility when it comes to addressing urgent matters.
Realizing the Benefits of Remote Monitoring
The risks of poorly managed remote work arrangements are significant. But with the right oversight in place, your company can mitigate these risks while adding crucial benefits that turn remote work into an asset.
Remote monitoring can help your business achieve efficiencies across your organization by maintaining employee productivity and improving morale with the typical benefits of remote work. In cases where employees experience lapses in cybersecurity or a reduction in productivity, monitoring can help management launch an appropriate intervention like security training or a performance management program.
The cost savings of allowing employees to work from home can also outweigh the cost of implementing remote monitoring, creating a win-win scenario for both employees and the company.
How to Implement a Remote Monitoring System
Ideally, your business would set up a remote monitoring system before transitioning your workforce to a remote work setting. As many businesses transitioned to remote work seemingly overnight in the spring of 2020, your business may need to implement a monitoring protocol in the midst of ongoing remote work.
Businesses should seek out monitoring solutions that address their most significant points of concern. For some companies, data security is clearly the top priority. In other cases, productivity may be the pressing concern you’d like to prioritize. Once you’ve identified a monitoring solution that addresses these pain points, you’ll need to work with IT to integrate this new solution into your existing technology stack.
You will likely also need to provide training or other education to inform your workforce of how this monitoring technology works and your intention to use the system to measure job performance in a remote work environment.
Invest in a Better Way of Doing Business
Remote work is only a risk when your business doesn’t invest in the right tools and solutions to support this alternative operation model. If your reluctance to fully embrace remote work is due to concerns about reduced oversight, a remote monitoring solution offers visibility into your workforce—even from a distance.
Want to learn more about the benefits of remote monitoring? Contact us today.