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How does your company support telecommuter's home networks

By F3R4L ·
I have started working at a new company recently and there have been a few difficult help desk calls related to home network support for telecommuters. The company I work for has never realy dealt with this issue all the effectively. It has a hand full of members of the Board trustee's that VPN onto the network and a small but growing amount of telecommuters.

It's been pretty much full service/support for the companies Board of trustee's but when it comes to the other telecommuters it has been spotty at best. The company has taken a real hands off approach to the no board members with support ending where the home network begins becuase we do not have the manpower to send out tech's to custom configure all the home networks and do not want to take on the liability of accidentally screwing up someones gear. There is also the question of who is responsible for communicating issues with the telecommuters ISP when problems arrise.

So, I am trying to be proactive and want to look into some better ways to administer these other telecommuters as we are seeing an increase in the request for teammembers to be able to work from home.

So, how does your company handle this issue.

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One approach

by JamesRL In reply to How does your company sup ...

I was with a company a few years ago that had a novel approach.

They gave each board member a computer, loaded it with VPN and all the software they needed. They arranged for high speed, and sent someone on site to set it up. Once the setup was working, it was locked down and ghosted. The computer had just enough access for the board member to do their tasks. The help desk had remote access tools on it. The understanding was that if the PC had any major issues, the company would hire a third party tech to go on site, format the drive and restore from the ghost image.

The person going on site would help configure the connection so that other users would share the connection but would not touch another computer other than the one supplied by the company.

It may sound like a lot of money and effort up front, but I am sure it helped eliminate a great deal of pain in the long run.

James

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Standards

by DMambo In reply to How does your company sup ...

We supply a standard image consisting of apps that the user needs, we run SUS and force updates, we force VS updates and lockdown the PC's to keep the cotton-pickin' fingers out of the image. Then, we expect them to either connect directly to the internet and thru a VPN to our network, or if they want to connect thru a home firewall, they have to RTFM. Basically, if we find that they somehow managed to get past the policies and install SW or HW, they are disciplined.

It's amazing how many requests I get to do a "favor" for someone to install something above and beyond the image, and I used to do it until I started getting requests to support it because the user didn't have the time to read up on it.

I'm just seconds away from a rant here, so I better go now. I'll just say that if you want to save a lot of headaches, set standards for HW and SW.

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