The novel coronavirus has been a major disrupter to many industries since the outbreak started couples of weeks ago. While the virus has caused countries to imposed stricter travel rules to curb it from spending, the number of new patients continue to increase. At the same time, the travel restrictions by some governments have caused businesses, especially those in the tourism industry, to experience a significant amount of losses.
With the lunar celebrations officially over, most companies would be welcoming back their employees. But due to the virus, many have been told to extend their leaves, especially those that have travelled or returning from the infected areas. This has also led to many conferences, events and business meetings being postponed. Companies are not able to get their employees to complete their tasks on time, as many are quarantined and unable to return to work.
Singapore currently has the third-highest number of infected cases, after China and Japan, as of February 10th, 2020. Several high-profile events and concerts have already been postponed or cancelled while e-hailing service provider Grab has also temporarily ended its Grab Share services. At the same time, there has also been an increased demand for food delivery services via Grab Food, Food Panda and such. But even with the increase in demand for such services, the fear of being infected has put off employees from continuing their work.
The tourism industry is expected to be the biggest casualty from all this. For other businesses, they are now finding ways in which they can get their employees to work from home. After all, work needs to be done, and the economy is not going to take a break due to a virus. Business deals will happen, and investors will begin to look elsewhere if things don’t improve eventually. Of course, if an employee is infected, he/she surely can’t work. But there are many employees stranded at home and just not able to return to work.
To avoid this, employees can work from home. Technology today enables them to work from almost anywhere, anytime. But the only problem with this is, can organisations trust their employees to work from home? There are already tools for workplace communication like Slack, Zoom, Go to Meeting and such. But these are for communication. What about accessing data and workloads to complete tasks?
Companies need to be sure their employees are working on devices that are protected and secured when accessing sensitive data and workloads outside the office. Also, they need to ensure that the network employees working on are secured as well. So how can organisations have visibility over their employee devices and also manage their work and tasks?
There are several workplace mobility software available in the market today for organisations, be it SMEs or large enterprises. From simple communication applications to remote device access, organisations can ensure employees continue to work from home to get things done.
Here’s a list of five workplace mobility and management software organisations can consider.
VMware Workspace ONE
A digital workspace platform, VMware Workspace ONE simplifies and securely delivers and manages any app on any device by integrating access control, application management and multi-platform endpoint management. It is available as a cloud service or for on-premises deployment. Workspace ONE can deliver secure access to the cloud, mobile, web and Windows apps on any smartphone, tablet or laptop through a single catalogue and a consumer-simple single sign-on (SSO) experience. Organisations can leverage a single platform to manage all devices regardless of ownership model, meaning they will not only be able to manage devices but also maintain complete employee privacy.
A Microsoft cloud-based management solution for mobile devices and OS management, Microsoft Intune aims to provide unified endpoint management to both corporate and BYOD in a way that protects corporate data. It enables single sign-on to simplify user access to thousands of cloud applications from Windows, Mac, Android and iOS devices. Users can launch applications from a personalised web-based access panel or mobile app using their company credentials.
Ping Identity provides intelligent access for customers, employees and partners to securely connect to the cloud, mobile, SaaS and on-premises applications and APIs. By delivering an easy-to-manage single sign-on (SSO) solution for one-click access to SaaS, legacy and custom web applications, Ping Identity supports thousands of pre-integrated SaaS applications and allows organisations to assemble the apps they need and access them from anywhere.
Okta’s Identity Cloud connects thousands of companies to thousands of pre-integrated apps and millions of devices every day. The secure connection empowers companies to re-invent themselves in their industries by connecting to the tools they need for their most important work from anywhere on any device, anytime. Okta is well-suited to understand the new state of identity and connects every person, to every application, and every device on the planet. It takes care of the complex connections to technologies, so organisations do not need to worry about it.
Manage Engine Desktop Central
As a unified endpoint management solution, Desktop Central helps in managing servers, laptops, desktops, smartphones, and tablets from a central location. Meaning organisations will have visibility and control over devices and can automate regular endpoint management routines like installing patches, deploying software, imaging and deploying OS, managing assets, software licenses, monitoring software usage statistics, managing USB device usage, taking control of remote desktops, and more.
Apart from the five mentioned above, organisations can also consider the following software to manage remote workflow and employee access:
Ivanti Unified Endpoint Management
Solarwinds Remote Monitoring & Management