The uncertainty that started in March 2020 is stretching into the new year. Businesses, communities, and individuals are still struggling to cope with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. For businesses, this means supporting flexible work environments, being able to move quickly from in-person to online settings, and maintain morale at the same time. Employees are looking for guidance from employers, and having clear policies in place for remote work is even more important now that at the start of the pandemic.

Instead of waiting for the world to go “back to normal,” it’s better to revise tactics and strategies to reflect this new reality. There is no more “set it and forget” it when it comes to policies for remote working. IT teams need to revisit user needs and company policies on a regular basis to achieve two goals: 

  • Ensure people have all the tools and equipment needed to get their jobs done. 
  • Ensure that policies and procedures are robust enough to keep company data safe and secure. 

The new imperative for 100% remote work is to keep mental health in mind for everyone. This means being honest about stress and anxiety by normalizing these emotions and dealing with them.

These four downloads from TechRepublic Premium can help you achieve all these goals. A telecommuting policy will set expectations for workers and the IT team. A remote access checklist and VPN policy will ensure easy access to vital systems and data. Finally, the 250+ tips will help you create a supportive and productive environment for yourself and your team.

250+ tips for telecommuting and managing remote workers

This ebook covers everything you need to know about working from home or helping your team members work from home. You’ll find ideas about how to avoid distractions and common work-at-home traps. This round up includes tips for managing video conferencing and making your workstation as ergonomically correct as possible. Finally, the tips on helping staff members deal with loneliness and isolation will help you help your team.

Telecommuting policy

If your company has been late to adopt a flexible working arrangement for employees, this policy is the place to start. Maybe the issue is that short-term solutions for working from home are insufficient for the new reality of remote work?This policy will help you update expectations for employees and set comprehensive rules to protect your company’s network and sensitive data.

VPN usage policy

VPNs are more important than ever as companies extend work-at-home plans indefinitely due to the coronavirus pandemic. Remote access is now the norm, and all employees need to be able to access critical information and systems securely. This policy will help you set the right level of access for each individual:Just enough to get the job done but not enough to create a security risk.

Remote access checklist

This list will ensure that you’ve covered all the bases of employee access. There are four sections in the checklist that contain all the relevant information for providing remote access. You’ll find sections about equipment, account access, applications, and even a list of instructions to provide to the remote employee. There’s also a signature section for the manager and employee to confirm receipt of the hardware and the instructions.