Remote Support: Work from anywhere meets support from anywhere
“There is a rapidly growing requirement for the capability to support people using any device, anywhere, anytime.”
How have you adapted your IT support for mobile workers? IT support has traditionally been very hands-on, with in-house or third-party providers being available on premise. Today, with most computing devices being mobile, applications migrating to the cloud, and employees working remotely – companies need a different approach.
Today’s computing environment consists of multiple devices, multiple operating systems, and a change in device ownership. People are working and communicating across a mix of BYOD and corporate devices including laptops, tablets, and smartphones.
Software as a Service (SaaS) and Device-as-a-Service (DaaS) have become part of the new normal. People expect their data and files to move across their devices as they change location – from the house to the car to the coffee shop, everything must be available regardless of where and on what device.
Wired devices such as printers, fax machines, on-premise servers, and local storage are reducing in usage, and there is less need for local on-site support. At the same time, there is a rapidly growing requirement for the capability to support people using any device, anywhere, anytime (A³).
Denis O’Shea on Remote Support
A New Normal
“Prior to COVID-19, people who worked outside the office remotely were the minority and were not a high priority for many companies. Well, that changed overnight and now we all understand and appreciate the challenges of working outside of a typical office.”
— Denis O’Shea – Founder of Mobile Mentor
Before the pandemic, telecommuting was a discussion topic in many organizations. From a business continuity planning perspective, it was seen by many as a short-term solution, rather than a modus operandi. COVID19 has accelerated the adoption of a distributed workforce – the great digital transformation has arrived.
With the requirement for social distancing, combined with the economic and productivity gains achieved from remote working, it appears unlikely that we will go back to the environment where most people commute daily to their place of work.
Many employees have adapted well to this change; however, it has not reduced the demand for IT support. If anything, it has made support more complex. Having to skill up on multiple platforms, form factors and operating systems, as well as BYOD is outside of the realm of most IT training and qualifications. In the legacy environment, it was relatively easy to limit IT systems to specific devices and platforms.
The Evolution of Remote Support
Remote working requires a new approach to SLAs to ensure workers are productive and feel valued.
Mass market applications such as Microsoft 365 offer economies of scale to support users with off-the-shelf devices, not limited to the Microsoft operating systems.
Modern Management means leveraging remote capabilities to support smartphones and laptops. It also means providing ways for remote workers to support themselves. Self help materials will not be a magic elixir and some users will still prefer to seek help to resolve issues. Our remote support team are experts on all operating systems and can aid employees regardless of where the issue is presenting. Many traditional IT helpdesks struggle to support smartphone users even though smartphones have become a critical tool for both two-factor authentication and email on the go.
The rate of change in versioning, feature upgrades, bug fixes and operating system updates increase the complexity of maintaining a working environment. Developing technologies are only going to increase the pace of change, and marketing is going to increase demand to support new devices and interfaces.
Empowering Remote Workers
Many companies now understand the needs of their remote worker and they provide a variety of support options including email, phone, support apps, online chat, bots, and self-service options.
For many companies, the logistics and cost of providing this level of support are prohibitive. Peak-time support call volumes have changed, further adding to the demand on corporate IT support staff.
Our support team at Mobile Mentor notices these shifts during Covid-19. They normally answer 95% of support calls within 60 seconds and they have support people rostered to meet demand in multiple time zones. These SLAs came under pressure during Covid-19 and required some rapid changes to be able to resolve a high percentage of issues on the first call.
Every company is different but it is clear that great support reduces the stress for employees, especially remote workers who often feel isolated away from their regular place of work.
Remote Support is one of the 6 pillars of Modern Endpoint Management. Leveraging it will simplify your IT operations and lead to happier, more engaged, and more productive employees.