Beware Of The Pandemic! The “Remote” Threat Of COVID For Businesses

The COVID-19 pandemic is not just a threat to public health but to businesses as well. Organizations have been literally thrown off balance with the sudden move to the remote working model. However, you have no choice as this the only way to survive and run amid the biggest global crisis. Remote working is keeping the wheels turning while ensuring the safety and well being of the employees. Right now, having people at work means that you are exposing them to infection, which is the last thing you would want to do.

On the flip side, operating with this new normal may require a lot of effort and preparation for the business. There is much that you need to do to make people comfortable with the concept of working from home. And there are risks of things going wrong as well, with threats involving business infrastructure, security, collaboration as well. Thankfully, having the right IT solutions in place can cover you to a considerable extent and keep things going seamlessly. Here are the aspects to bear in mind while keeping pace with the remote transition.


To start with, businesses need to ensure that their employees are equipped to deal with the work-from-home model and its practices. Having the right infrastructure in place is the only way to make this possible. While providing them the right hardware is the first thing to do, you may also consider offering them an allowance for setting up a home office to take things to the next level. Further, remote workers also require the basic infrastructural elements like a high-speed internet connection and power backup to work uninterrupted. So this is something your allowance should cover as well.


Perhaps the biggest challenge that companies face with the remote model is employee collaboration. Needless to say, effective collaboration is much more than video calls and remote team meetings. Rather, you need to facilitate spontaneous collaboration because it lets people come up with creative solutions. It is important to have a solid collaborative framework in place, with the right set of chat apps, meeting tools, and data sharing software that lets them be connected on every front. Further, video calls and casual interactions should be a part of the initiative as they reduce the sense of isolation.


Another critical threat of COVID-induced remote work is cybersecurity. Most firms need to handle confidential information, which makes it vital to ensure that employees working from home have a secure environment. There is much you can do in this context, from installing the right security software to facilitating secure file sharing, mandating device encryption, and enforcing best practices for the use of personal devices. Further, firms also need to provide the right training so that employees are able to spot any suspicious activity and report cyberattacks, malware, or phishing attempts before they do any major damage.

Policy framework

Remote work requires a clear policy framework so that employees have clear expectations related to productivity, performance, leaves and rewards. Since virtual work is apparently going to be around for a foreseeable future, companies need to invest in a culture of remote work. While there should be clear policies and procedures in place for leave, appraisals and employee feedback, businesses also need to ensure that managers trust remote workers and do not harbor a negative bias towards them. Having mutual trust and transparency is the only way both businesses and workers can survive and sustain themselves through the crisis.

Emotional well-being

A challenge that is easy to overlook amid the stress of the crisis is the loneliness and isolation your employees face as they work from home. If remote working is going to be the new normal, organizations need to overcome this challenge and find the best ways to address the emotional well-being of their people. Fortunately, innovative use of technology can be of great help in this context as well. Consider having weekly fun sessions for the team to interact on personal levels. Managers can implement a system for team celebrations of work achievements and personal milestones such as birthdays and anniversaries. Gamification is another good way to elevate employee engagement and promote their mental health.

The COVID-19 outbreak is an eye-opener for businesses as they have been forced to re-evaluate the way they work conventionally. At the same time, it has highlighted the significance of resilience and adaptability for them. Organizations have understood the value of diversifying their business model and building a workplace strategy that is adaptable, proactive and comprehensive. Perhaps, this is the only way to survive and emerge stronger in the toughest situations.

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