Some essential tips to help you get work done remotely in these uncertain times:
1 Have a dedicated space to work from. Whether it’s a spare bedroom, a breakfast nook or a closet – that space is now the office. Use a comfortable chair and ensure there is plenty of lighting. Leave the computer in there and close the door when work for the day is done.
2 Maintain a regular routine. Get up at the same time, shower occasionally (at least) and stay hydrated. Don’t forget to stand up regularly. It’s much easier to stay sedentary for longer periods at a home office because there are less interruptions from coworkers. If you have little ones running around, this may not be as applicable.
3 Struggling with your Internet connection? A lot of people are. This is due in part to everyone else in the neighborhood also working from home, kids doing homework, streaming video for entertainment, etc. Home based Internet speeds are not guaranteed like business class service. They are rated for “up to” 100mbps, or similar. Simply having a strong WiFi signal is not necessarily a reflection of the overall performance of the data transmission taking place.
3.1 Check the age of your cable modem. If it has not been replaced within the last 3-4 years, it needs to be. Order a new one that is at least DOCSIS 3.0 but preferably DOCSIS 3.1 enabled. We like Surfboard brand modems. You will have to call your provider and give them the hardware address of the new modem. This is located on a sticker on the bottom of the device. It will read something like this: 00:0a:95:9d:68:16. As far as AT&T / DSL service is concerned, you have our condolences.
3.2 Equally important is the location of the WiFi router, if it’s a separate device. If it’s located in the far corner of the house underneath a pile of stuff it will affect performance. Elevate it off the floor as high as possible. Further improvements can be gained from centrally locating it in the house. If WiFi / modem is the same device this is just as important.
3.3 If you have the ability to hard wire devices with an ethernet cable, do so. WiFi is a very convenient technology but it is not better than using ethernet. Additionally, most consumer grade WiFi routers struggle to keep up with more than a handful of devices at a time. Cables and Connections in West Columbia has various lengths of ethernet cables at very reasonable prices. AppleTV, gaming consoles, Smart TVs, desktop computers all should be hard wired for optimal performance. This reduces load on WiFi signal processing and helps laptops and mobile phones perform better.
4 Have a conference call to attend? Consider taking a walk during the call. Even if it’s just pacing back and forth in the house. Move around, stay hydrated and don’t forget to hit the Mute button if you inadvertently go to the bathroom during the call. On a more serious note, the Mute button is very under-utilized on conference calls. Everyone has been on a call where someone is beating up their keyboard on speakerphone while taking notes. Find the Mute button, use the Mute button, LOVE! the Mute button. If you’re not actively speaking, be on Mute! Want to be a real conference call hero? Use a headset in addition to the Mute and the call will go smoother. Ask others on the call to do the same!
5 Be extra cautious of scams. Data / system security works at many layers. A home office does not have the same level of protections in place as a business office. Don’t open emails and especially attachments that are not expected. Do not give usernames or passwords to anyone over the phone or via email.
6 Rubbing alcohol on a microfiber towel is a great way to clean keyboards, mice and touch-pads.
7 Give yourself and your employees grace. We’re in uncertain times going through uncharted territory. Everything is going to be okay. Take a deep breath, get done what you can get done and keep at it. Those not used to working from home/remotely may be surprised at how much more productive one can be due to the reduced number of interruptions. Often times the same level of productivity can be achieved in fewer hours than at the office. #winning
We hope that these 6 tips help you keep things going but let’s also take the time to enjoy this quieter season and support one another. Many people are hurting and are fearful. This, too, shall pass. If we can be of assistance to your business, please let us know. Backups, disaster recovery planning, online orders or getting set up to work remotely. We are looking to help. Mention this blog and we’ll give you 10% off on labor.
Contact us at 803.955.7737