The World Health Organization has officially categorized COVID-19 as a Pandemic. Meaning the virus is being spread across multiple countries simultaneously.
Countries around the world are increasingly adopting measures to stem the spread of the new coronavirus, including imposing travel restrictions, sealing the borders, shutting down business operations and switching to working remotely.
Recently, the Nigerian government declared the restrictions of entry into the country for travellers from 13 high-risk Covid-19 countries, these countries are China, Italy, Iran, South Korea, Spain, Japan, France, Germany, United States of America, Norway, United Kingdom, Netherlands & Switzerland.
In response to calls from the World Health Organisation, companies such as Google, Twitter, Amazon, LinkedIn and Microsoft are mandating their staff to work remotely in order to reduce the spread of the virus. For modern-tech companies, the prerequisites for remote working are unquestionably already in place.
As part of efforts to curtail the effects of the coronavirus on the nation’s economy, Organizations are left with no other choice than creating a “work from home policy” and finding means to ensure operational efficiency.
Nigerian businesses, however, are now faced with a new challenge on how to set up a remote operations model that doesn’t compromise operational efficiency (should laws be implemented to enforce this).
In order to get optimal productivity for your remote operations, the below list of requirements can help your transition;
- A project management software
- A Virtual Private Network
- A good internet connection
- A strict routine
- Chat and conferencing applications
- Self-motivation and discipline
Companies and organizations also need to put certain measures in place to monitor communication and activities as there may be an increased information security breach. Some of the challenges that may be addressed during this period are;
Information Security Threat
Remote workers often transfer files between work and personal computers when working from home, thereby, putting your company’s data at risk which could render your company’s database vulnerable to external invasion. How then can you secure your company data when dealing with remote work?
- Encrypt the information in their database
- Log out when not in use
- Strong password policy
Lack of communication might pose a major problem as remote staff often feel isolated. There is a need to put in place effective communication systems. However, these challenges can be tackled by;
- Ensuring everyone has a clear picture of team objectives, deadlines and how each member will contribute.
- Creating a collaborative team culture, with regular face-to-face interaction and social time.
- Using the right platforms/application
- Replacing e-mail usage with chat and video tools
Accessing the company network and systems
Establish a system that will grant employee access to the organization’s internal network from home and take into consideration whether the same level of access to sensitive data enjoyed on-site should be granted when the employee is off-site.
For some organisations, their work culture might not be the same again as this urgent shift to remote mode could prove to be a work experiment few companies would have ever undertaken on such a scale. Will this sudden “work from home mandate” have a permanent effect on work culture?