Here’s an interesting article by my colleague Brandon Shopp discussing impacts from the pandemic and recommendations on improving the remote worker experience.
One of the business consequences from the pandemic—increased remote working—is causing technology challenges across most industries, including the public sector.
The pandemic interrupted “business as usual” and caused a spike in the need to work remotely. As a result, applications organizations once took for granted consequently became mission critical. Now, as remote work has evolved into the new normal, custom apps must not falter—in fact, the demand for them to operate at an optimized level has never been more important because even a small performance degradation or outage could be disastrous.
How can agencies best cope with the increased demand for accessibility and visibility? Their IT teams must ensure applications work as expected and users can navigate the network seamlessly. Specifically, IT teams need to bulletproof their organizations’ applications and infrastructure to ensure nothing fails. Infrastructure monitoring has never been more vital.
To troubleshoot problems impacting users in a remote work environment, IT teams must prioritize IT monitoring across applications, databases, storage, and the network. Specifically, IT pros must:
- Ensure a frictionless experience for remote workers
- Troubleshoot applications and system access problems
- Plan for fluctuations in demand
Let’s look closer at how best to accomplish these goals.
Ensuring a Frictionless Experience for Remote Workers
For the remote work experience to be truly frictionless, an agency’s applications and data must be readily available—the same way they were when all workers were onsite. If they’re in the agency’s portfolio, encourage the use of cloud-based collaboration platforms, so the workforce can continue to communicate in real time and share work products easily.
Next, be sure to develop and maintain IT dashboards to actively monitor system, application, and network health and accessibility.
Troubleshooting Applications and System Access Problems
For better or worse, IT support team requests increase as work conditions change. This means the agency help desk support team must be adequately staffed to carry them through the increased workload; the last thing an agency needs is employee burnout.
It’s important for staff to request support through multiple channels such as phone, email, dedicated support applications, and collaboration tools.
Monitoring each component application and network segment’s performance will help determine whether challenges reported by the remote worker are local to the agency or because of a shortage of bandwidth at the employee’s end.
Planning for Fluctuations in Demand
The pandemic has introduced new fluctuations in demand as workers shift to remote work or work on site as part of a skeleton crew. Agency IT pros have an opportunity to make use of the quiet time onsite by optimizing the network and computing environment and building in future capacity for the returning workforce.
The first step is to monitor the network and computing assets to develop a baseline of behavior. Next, review the aggregated log data to determine where bottlenecks currently exist, and develop and implement an improvement plan.
Meeting Mission Requirements
Change is challenging for any organization. The pandemic has accelerated change faster than any IT pro could have anticipated. But there’s absolutely a way to continue with “business as usual”—ensuring the agency workforce can continue to meet mission requirements.
Find the full article on our partner Carahsoft’s Community Blog.
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