For years, people have been talking about how working remotely was the “future” for the workforce in the United States. However, few likely could have predicted that the future would have come along quite as quickly as it did.
According to one recent study, about 51% of employees were “always” working remotely by April 2020, during those initial months of the COVID-19 pandemic. But fascinatingly, most people actually enjoy this “new normal” they’ve found themselves in. The same study indicated that about 30% of people working remotely would like to continue to do so out of fear of COVID-19… but a full 35% say they want to stay working from home simply because they prefer it to being in the office.
Based on that, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that experts predict that between 25% and 30% of American workers will still be operating out of their homes multiple days per week by the end of 2021 – regardless of what happens with the vaccine rollout.
But for this new setup to be successful, your employees need access to the types of IT resources that allow them to be just as productive at home as they can be in the office. They need an infrastructure that will keep them safe and secure while still allowing them to communicate and collaborate with one another. If this is going to be permanent, they likely need more than they have access to right now – which is precisely where an MSP can help.
Why MSPs are More Important Than Ever
Obviously, the biggest way that MSPs have supported clients during the COVID-19 pandemic has involved making this remote workforce possible in the first place. MSPs are in a unique position to help people transition away from on-premises IT environments towards more cloud-based solutions that offer anytime, anywhere access to critical data. Not only can they help guarantee the most effective pivot into the cloud possible, but they can also make sure that all the necessary systems are in place to enable a remote working situation that is as productive as you need it to be.
Not only will this help your business remain productive as the pandemic drags on, but it will also support what is likely to be a permanent situation once it’s over, too. Allowing your employees to work from home indefinitely is going to require you to change the way you think about a number of things, with security being chief among them. Remember that any device connected to a network is a potential vulnerability just waiting to be exploited by someone who knows what they’re doing. When all of your employees are in the office, it’s easy to establish a security framework that includes firewalls, monitoring tools, antivirus software and more.
It’s decidedly more difficult to offer that same protection when everyone is A) spread out in so many directions, and B) are all using their personal devices to conduct essential work business.
An MSP therefore becomes the best way to create a new approach to cybersecurity – one that enables all the benefits of a remote workforce with as few of the potential downsides as possible. From proactive security patching to ongoing training and security education, MSPs have and will continue to help businesses keep their employees, their clients and their data safe while everyone works from home for the foreseeable future.
Of course, MSPs can help your business in other ways, too. Thanks to the pandemic, the needs of most organizations are rapidly changing as they try to keep up with evolving consumer behaviors and other market factors. Companies need to be able to adapt and capitalize on these new opportunities and by creating the most flexible IT infrastructure possible, MSPs can help you do precisely that.
MSPs can also work with you to help identify areas and processes across your business that can be optimized, allowing you and your people to do more with less. Business process automation is a great way to relieve the burden of a lot of those menial and time-consuming tasks that your employees have to deal with, allowing them to focus their attention on those matters that truly need them. This also gives them more time to focus on customer retention and relationships, which may very well be the most important benefit of all.
In the end, while the COVID-19 pandemic may soon be behind us thanks to the still-ongoing vaccine rollout, the “new normal” that it has created likely isn’t going away anytime soon. This is especially true when it comes to the remote workforce, but it’s equally valid in other areas too.
But regardless of how your business continues to change, one thing remains a certainty: an MSP can help you create the IT infrastructure you need to not only remain productive and profitable today, but to continue to do so regardless of what happens tomorrow and beyond.
If you’d like to find out more information about how an MSP can help keep your business as productive and as profitable as possible during and after the COVID-19 pandemic, or if you’d just like to discuss the specifics of your own situation with someone in a bit more detail, please don’t hesitate to contact HI-TEX Solutions today.