What telecommuting can do for your business

There are many advantages to telecommuting, and the drawbacks are mostly in how it’s perceived

By Logan G. Harbaugh, PC World |  Cloud Computing, telecommuting, video conferencing

Remote control apps such as LogMeIn, GoToMyPC, or Splashtop Remote Desktop let a user log in from home and control their work PC. Collaboration software such as Google Apps and Office 365 allow users in different locations to share documents, files, presentations, and other data simultaneously. And video conferencing software--such as Cisco WebEx Meeting Center, Citrix GoToMeeting, or the free, multi-person chat enabled by Google+ Hangouts--facilitates group meetings.

3. You conserve office space and save money.

The remote worker not only furnishes his own desk and PC, but also electricity, snacks, water, bathroom, telecommunications bandwidth, phone service, and more. This lets you reduce your expenses for your office. Even if you reimburse some costs, such as Internet connectivity or phone use, you'll still save on the square footage of office space required and utilities.

4. You reduce IT management time and equipment costs.

In general, remote workers provide their own connectivity and PC. While you may need to establish antivirus, collaboration, remote access, and other software, overall costs should be much less than managing the machines, network, and desktop software in-house. You'll want to set standards, and perhaps implement compliance-checking software to ensure that no one who logs into your network is infected with a virus or has unpatched software.

5. You can take advantage of distributed, cloud-based IT functions.

Rather than hosting servers in your offices, you can take advantage of cloud applications that enable telepresence. If your employees are distributed, cloud applications may provide more reliable service than your own servers would, since cloud vendors have multiple data centers and redundant connections to ensure reliable connectivity. Of course, you'll need to thoroughly investigate the available security and backup options of each service.

6. Your organization can become more agile.

If the tools are set up properly, telepresence can make your company more agile, while giving workers greater flexibility to meet project requirements. You can find and enlist contract workers quickly for specific projects.

7. Your workers cost less.


Originally published on PC World |  Click here to read the original story.
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