Experts say the pandemic has caused a revolution in work culture, with 74% of chief financial officers being ready to shift some employees to remote work after the crises. However, many employers are concerned about challenges that come with remote working and seek assistance from IT companies developing software for remote PC monitoring. If you are not sure whether you should join them, we have some strong arguments to consider.
We’ve decided to start with this point precisely because it is often overlooked. On the one hand, you definitely need to make sure that your remote teams are equipped with the necessary digital tools to perform their work to an accomplished standard. Moreover, a uniform technology stack is a must in many cases. If a remote worker cannot access a collaborative platform other team members use or different departments exchange documents made in different Windows versions, delays, confusion, and productivity drops are inevitable.
On the other hand, purchasing a subscription or license will cost you money. The question is whether it turns out to be a good investment or a waste. A study shows that 69% of workers spend up to an hour each day navigating between various apps, and 56% report losing focus while switching between them. Employees overwhelmed by technology translate into decreased productivity, increased burnout, and disrupted morale, while you just pour money down the drain by incorporating more and more apps to help your staff out. Stop it!
Remote PC monitoring software can give you insight into apps actually used across your teams and reveal those solutions that lie dormant. At the very least, you will be able to withdraw from paying for the latter ones, thus saving a bunch of money. To take it a step further, you can think through integration opportunities since the same study shows that about 50% of workers believe a single platform would provide increased productivity, time savings, and better communication.
Speaking of apps used in the workplace, we should keep in mind another disturbing fact — a survey says that 48% of employees use apps that weren’t distributed by their IT department. It might look like no big problem if it wasn't for security threats associated with software downloaded from unauthorized sources. When doing so, your remote workers create a danger of letting malware and hackers into your network and databases, which can lead to many dire consequences like identity theft or data leaks. Besides, files and programs downloaded on workplace devices often violate copyright laws, and the employer will be legally accountable for this offense even if they actually have nothing to do with it.
But the problem goes beyond downloads since, according to a YourGov survey, only 22% of remote workers take basic data breach precautions, such as locking their computers during breaks or refraining from utilizing work desktops for personal use. Meanwhile, 56% of the respondents admit to browsing non-work websites, which is another side of the security threat. In addition to viruses picked up while surfing the Web, other related concerns include visiting unethical sites, performing illegal activities, and exhibiting unacceptable user behavior at work.
Software designed to monitor remote devices shields businesses from multiple financial and reputational losses that might be caused by their remote workers’ actions, accidental or intentional. It helps either prevent security issues or identify them before they gain in scale.
While it seems that remote workers aren’t less productive than in-office employees, we have to admit that many of them face problems with setting up a proper working environment. It is especially true for those who work from homes or cafés, frequently full of people, noise, and other distractions. While office workspaces are better structured and supervised in general, remote work requires higher self-discipline and dedication.
However, remote and office environments share some common distractions. Although you cannot prevent kids or pets from bothering your working-from-home employee, you have a good opportunity to shut out technology-powered diversions. Non-work websites and applications are always listed among top distractions at work, with social media named the most intrusive. Statista says that 56% of workers believe that online socializing interfere with their work, and up to 71% of another survey’s respondents cited Facebook as their number one online distracter.
But you can use remote PC monitoring software to drill deeper, for example, into video calls and emails. Namely, one study shows that employees interrupted by email have to spend one-third more time to complete a task. Another report reveals 67% of respondents experiencing productivity downfalls due to excessive meetings and calls. Now imagine how much time and focus are lost when personal emails and non-work video conversations add to the workflow. To top it off, 40% of respondents surveyed by one cybersecurity company told about mental exhaustion from video calls while working remotely. Maybe, it’s time to rethink your communication channels and Internet Usage Policy.
Working outside standard offices comes with certain advantages, such as more flexible schedules, no need to commute, or some extra time to spend with family. On the flip side of the coin, we have isolation, lack of visibility for growth opportunities, difficulties with establishing relationships with coworkers, and a poor work/life balance. According to Joblist survey, almost 42% of respondents experienced a decrease in life satisfaction since working remotely vs. 35% of those who reported an increase. Further, 53% admitted that WFH made it more difficult to separate work from non-work life, and 59% said they regularly worked past normal office hours.
So, how can remote PC monitoring software help change the situation for the better? First of all, you will get your remote workers more visible to hush their fears about losing career opportunities. You can track their performance and violations to receive a true picture of your remote workforce’s commitment and provide promotions and punishments accordingly. In addition, the software informs you about the actual working hours of your remote workers for you to timely address possible overtime and burnout. This information gives you a chance to adjust working schedules and make everyone happy while maintaining productivity.
Work Examiner’s products are stuffed with helpful features to achieve each of the above goals and guide your business through remote work challenges. Here is how it works.
You have three ways of monitoring apps utilized by your remote workforce. For a quick insight into the most frequently used tools, you should go to your dashboard and scroll down to an easy to grasp pie chart. Here, you can change default settings to switch to the least useful apps or get them sorted out by total time instead of active time.
In the Activities tab, you will be able to see how various apps contribute to productivity as well as adjust app categories and productivity levels to get more accurate data.
By clicking on an app, you will be taken to a more detailed report showing daily and hourly time distribution for the program’s usage, the breakdown of this time per users who interacted with it, and more.
If you want to find out what apps your remote workers are currently using, check the Online Sessions widget, which also displays websites being visited.
The Work Examiner team believes that it's better to be safe than sorry. So, its cutting-edge monitoring solutions provide the possibility to remotely block websites, apps, and portable storage devices.
The blockage is performed through the Rules section, where you can also set up messages warning users of the rule and notifying you of its violations.
Alerts can be configured to let you know about certain words and phrases typed on keyboards, whether they are passwords or search queries.
You can look through keystroke and search reports whenever you like or schedule them according to your business needs.
The same goes for operations with files, emails, and printouts made on workplace computers: you can see who did what and when, including viewing the content of emails.
Needless to say, removing at least a part of distractions contributes to better productivity. However, you need accurate metrics to assess the performance of your remote workforce and a clear picture of productivity gaps to tackle the issues effectively. The Productivity tab solves both tasks by collecting corresponding data and combining them into intuitive graphs. They show productivity by time and user.
For more details, you can click on a user’s name and explore other related widgets, such as the person’s attendance or activities.
If you choose a proactive approach, make sure to use alerts for notifying you about users being idle or active for a time specified as well as their logins/logouts.
Another useful feature is recording screens, with records made every five minutes of a user’s active time. Based on these records, you can get an idea of your remote employees’ working day, detect security issues, and even resolve disputes using the recordings as evidence.
Some data delivered by Work Examiner’s products refer not only to performance but also work/life balance. For example, the Sessions tab contains graphics showing when your remote workers start and end a workday, their active time distribution, and productivity metrics. As this report is generated based on mouse/keyboard interactions, you will know for sure who is overworking and is at risk of burnout.
The Attendance section delivers additional information by displaying an active time/breaks ratio. Putting it all together, you can advise your employees on a more healthy approach to their workflow.
If you want your business to remain competitive, don’t miss out on the opportunity to establish a strong remote work culture with the help of feature-rich employee monitoring solutions by Work Examiner.
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