Businesses are much different today. The changes that took place over the past three years should cause organizational leaders and MSPs to take pause and reassess pretty much everything they manage. From the people and processes to the systems and solutions that make work possible (and hopefully easier), the pandemic reshaped management attitudes towards alternate office environments.

That acceptance is not without limits. Workplace ecosystems must support organizational objectives and provide checks and balances to ensure employees productivity and security. Those environments must also be properly managed, monitored, protected, and updated. Few businesses, especially SMBs, have an IT staff and the tools to properly address the technology needs of today’s mobile workforce. Even less have the ability to develop the required policies, processes, and infrastructure.

Designing and supporting these environments is not as easy as many business owners believe. Successful remote deployments require people with the right skills and experience to not just procure and implement the technologies, but to trouble-shoot and address all the potential problems that can occur in less controllable ecosystems. From internet connectivity and temperature concerns to lapses in cybersecurity and backup protocols, few employees have the capability to resolve many (if any) of the things that can go wrong with their business systems.

The risks of leaving end-users “in the wild” without adequate remote support are far too real.

Adapting to the “New Normal”

Many organizations fast tracked changes during the early days of the pandemic. In some cases, IT directors (for those who have an internal team) or other team members provided employees with basic support and equipment to work temporarily from home. Those PCs, laptops, and other devices, coupled with cloud-based business solutions, were intended to keep operations going until everything returned to normal. The problem is that situation took longer than expected for far too many organizations.

Businesses with an MSP or strong internal IT staff to support those short-term IT transitions had fewer reasons to worry than those without any technical prowess. An effective, though quickly assembled strategy allowed many end-users to continue working from the safety of home or other remote locations during the height of COVID-19.

However, when the threat lessened, many of those plans shifted as employers reassessed their previously scheduled “return to the office” directives. Unexpectedly for many businesses, the WFH experience netted overall positive results and some workers, after realizing all the benefits of these environments, were reluctant to go back.

More than a year later (longer in some cases), many organizations are still struggling with their remote work plans. The situation presents a challenge for companies with few if any internal IT support staff. Managing deployments and monitoring WFH environments requires the right skills and oversight, as well as a formidable toolset and integration capabilities to enable communications and automation. Few companies can provide those comprehensive IT resources for their remote workforce.

WFH Gains Momentum and Support

The optimal solution to WFH and hybrid workforce challenges is managed services. Businesses with remote employees, even those with internal IT teams, need more flexible technical support resources and higher-level capabilities to keep those offsite systems operating efficiently.

MSPs are experts in that area. From system set up and end-user training to performance and cybersecurity monitoring, providers have the people, skills, and resources to optimize remote environments. The best way for companies – from SMBs to the enterprise – to overcome the potential challenges of offsite ecosystems is to work with experts in virtual work technologies and support.

WFH and hybrid workforce enablement can be a real differentiator for MSP businesses. With a robust portfolio of solutions to support remote offices, managed service providers can help their clients streamline communications and collaboration, and properly secure these “at risk” environments. They can leverage cloud-based tools such as virtual desktops, UCaaS, VoIP, virtual email, and a host of other applications to boost productivity. MSPs can also provide management teams with greater oversight with monitoring systems and reporting applications that track activities and performance.

Most of all, IT services firms can ensure a quality user experience. Delivering intuitive and power technologies can ease the work burdens of those in WFH and hybrid environments, simplifying processes and boosting their communications capabilities.

MSPs can also leverage these capabilities to land new clients, increase monthly recurring revenue, and improve their profitability. The WFH and hybrid workforce movement can be a game-changer for businesses and the IT services firms that support these rapidly expanding technology ecosystems.