The escalation of COVID-19 means social distancing is a necessity and Australian business owners are looking at how their operations will survive. But how can you enact continuity plans to allow staff to work from home so business can continue as usual?
The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends business owners develop contingency and business continuity plans to prepare for employees being required to work from home. Working from home may be necessary due to local travel restrictions, illness or at-risk health conditions.
According to their website, the WHO recommends employers promote teleworking or work-from-home arrangements. Global big tech companies such as Google, Microsoft, Twitter, Hitachi, Apple, Amazon and others have all recently initiated mandatory work-from-home policies amid the spread of COVID-19.
But what about Australian SME owners who have to continue to run their business while protecting staff and customers from this pandemic?
Working against the clock
There are strong indications that businesses may shut down entirely and potentially permanently if they can’t quickly plan for their employees to work from home.
Working from home means there is no access to systems needed to keep the business running. How can you enable employees to work from home when data and applications are office-based?
“The $25,000 economic stimulus package announced by the Australian government on 12 March is a start, but more will need to be done to support small businesses in Australia”, says founder and CEO of Small Business Association of Australia Anne Nalder.
Nalder says that some business owners are concerned they will go bankrupt if they have to close down for a period of time and their staff can’t work from home.
Take your business to the cloud
Australian cloud services IT company CT4 is built on a remote-first policy and is an expert on remote working solutions. This ensures their customers have no interruption in service during challenging times.
As Australia’s workforce is potentially facing widespread quarantine, CT4’s general manager Wayne Moore indicated that businesses looking for quick solutions should consider cloud-based virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI). Cloud-based VDI provides immediate access to staff who have any old computer and internet connection at home.
He says the simple solution is to lift business applications and data to a secure, Australia-based cloud platform. A platform which allows staff to log in to desktop-based CRMs, financial software and corporate applications from anywhere at any time — including whilst in home isolation.
“It’s essential for businesses without current cloud or web-based applications to quickly move to take on services such as virtual desktops, back-up of applications, cloud hosting and secure data storage”, says Moore.
“An entire business can be set up within days to run operations remotely, without the health risk to employees and customers. Plus, the cost is very affordable.”
In unpredictable times during a global upheaval, businesses who can ensure their employees can continue to service customers will come out the other side of this global health disaster relatively unscathed.
CT4 builds and operates private and hybrid cloud platforms with data centre presence around the globe. CT4 is one of the first Australian true private cloud providers, delivering cloud solutions for over 10 years. Additionally CT4 modernises legacy business apps with bespoke software development. CT4 also offers Canopy Manage, a next generation IoT and IT asset management tool which provides a single aggregated view of assets across the modern enterprise.