Even as businesses start to reopen and life resumes a more normal pace, much has changed since the global outbreak of COVID-19 began. People have grown accustomed to staying in, take-out and delivery services have skyrocketed, and group video chats and livestream performances have become the new normal.
Expectations and habits have shifted on an international scale.
At this point, it’s safe to assume things will never be quite the same as they were before 2020, and office spaces are no exception. While remote working has risen in popularity over the past decade or so, it has now become firmly engrained in work culture. Things that were once an exception are now the rule.
Whatever your personal thoughts might be regarding COVID-19 and the measures being taken, there’s no point in fighting the shifting work climate. The best thing to do is adapt.
Even for companies who need high-performance, extra security, and 24/7 monitoring, cloud hosting solutions can provide dedicated server space that keeps up with all of their demands.
But in-between cloud servers and in-house servers, there is another option: colocation.
Colocation is when you house your own physical server equipment in a third-party data center. You handle the purchasing and configuration of the equipment. The data center keeps it secure, powered, and cooled.
This has proven to be a popular solution, as it frees businesses from having to store their dedicated servers in their own buildings. Advanced systems can make noise and run hot, not to mention they need backup power sources, extra security measures, and high-speed network access.
By placing your equipment in a data center, you can free up your own real estate and remove the responsibility of keeping your servers powered, protected, and connected. It’s a best of both worlds approach.
However, as cloud hosting and dedicated virtual servers have grown in capabilities, many have moved away from colocation. Some have even gone as far as to say that colocation is dead. This is not true. In fact, colocation is on the rise.
Why is that? It’s simple. Some businesses need their own equipment.
And others just like having ownership over it.
Office Life After COVID-19
Precautions for Sickness
The safety of employees should be a top priority for any business. Now more than ever, it’s important that your employees feel safe. As offices have started to open, temperature checks have become commonplace. While this likely won’t last forever, flexible sickness policies almost certainly will.
Encourage any employees who are feeling unwell to work from home. Even if their symptoms are minor, or they passed the day before, it’s best to stay safe. Businesses will likely be establishing official protocols for what employees should do when they’ve been sick.
100% Remote Readiness
When quarantine measures started, many offices were forced to quickly (and radically) expand their remote capabilities. In March, approximately 30% of Americans were working from home in some capacity. By April, it had increased to 62%, and it’s only continued to rise.
It’s safe to assume that many of these people have gotten used to the process of working out of their homes. Even before quarantine started, a Gallup poll found that 54% of workers would leave their job for one that’s flexible with where and when people work.
As an office in a post-COVID world, you need to be ready for any given employee to be able to do 100% of their job remotely. There may be specific exceptions to this within your business, such as an IT worker needing to physically access a system. Even in these situations, however, you should look into solutions that would allow for you to operate 100% remotely.
Employees Will Have Better At-Home Setups
Part of the concern with employees working from home is that they lack the proper setup and tools to efficiently operate. With the months of quarantine, however, most employees have naturally adapted. Desks have been purchased, areas have been sectioned off, etc.
Still, there is an opportunity for businesses to step in and further assist their employees in their abilities to work from home. You may consider supplying employees with at-home monitors, webcams, and other tools.
More importantly, you need to ensure the devices they’re using and the networks they’re accessing are properly set up and secured.
An Increased Need for Remote Cybersecurity
While a loss in productivity is a big concern for employees working from home, cybersecurity is an even larger one. Employees working on their home network from a personal device are typically more exposed than if they were working from the office.
Implementing a VPN is a great first step, but it’s not enough. Any devices being used for work, even if they’re privately owned, need to be properly updated and maintained. You also need to ensure employees have access to the necessary tools and software. Trying to manage all of these extra devices and networks can be very taxing for businesses, even if they have an IT team.
This is where a third-party IT partner can prove to be very useful.
At DataYard, we provide a full suite of IT and cybersecurity services that can keep your business protected and stable, whether your employees are at home or in the office. We can also handle your hosting and cloud-based needs, allowing your business to be 100% remote-ready, if necessary. Have your own server equipment? We have the perfect colocation space for you to house it in.
In a post-COVID office environment, businesses will need an increasingly complex range of IT capabilities. With DataYard, the process becomes a lot simpler. For IT, hosting, and cyber security in Dayton, Ohio and beyond, contact DataYard today!