MERIT Solutions Blog

MERIT Solutions has been serving the Chesapeake area since 1982, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Leave the Big Stuff Home: Productivity On the Go

Leave the Big Stuff Home: Productivity On the Go

Have you ever found yourself packing too many things for a short trip? What about your technology? Do you have multiple devices? The truth is that no matter the reason you are traveling, you don’t need to pack like royalty to be able to be productive while you are on the road. Today, we talk about how scaling down your technology while you travel is a solid practice.

Devices
The modern worker is often asked to be productive when they travel. Traditionally that means lugging around expensive hardware and trying to find access points to use along the way. Airports, train terminals, and bus terminals have a lot in common. They are filled to the brim with both people on the go, and people who are looking to take advantage of unsuspecting travelers who take their eyes of their bags for just a second. Having too much to carry around can result in your computer, and thus your work data, being stolen. A nightmare scenario to be sure.

To avoid this, business professionals traveling for work should consider scaling down on their technology to maximize space. Tablets and smaller laptops can provide benefit as they can easily fit in any-sized bag and likely won’t take up enough room to facilitate a bag of their own. The idea is to get the most powerful, yet smallest machines on board with you so that you can still get work done, but not risk losing the bag or having it get stolen. Any machine that comfortably fits into a carry-on should be perfect for the average traveler. Today’s Netbooks, smaller Chromebooks, and the Macbook Air offer the kind of portability and powerful computing features needed to reduce the risk of having your technology stolen.

Additionally, today’s smartphones are extraordinarily useful as not only are they great for communication and recreation, they can be used for productivity with very little modification. People will say that phones aren’t big enough to be productive on, but today’s phones can do a lot more than ones that are only a few years old...and the peripherals are much better. Today there are Bluetooth keyboards that allow users to connect to their phones and give them the opportunity to get more done on a small device. Remember, the average smartphone released in 2018 has as much computing power as many new laptops, so finding a way to use the devices for productivity works in the traveler’s (and the user’s) advantage.

For the newest Samsung smartphones, the Korean tech giant has developed Samsung Dex. It is a dock that provides a PC-like performance when hooked up to a monitor--using Bluetooth to connect the keyboard and mouse. It’s a good plan, in theory. Microsoft tried something similar to try and save their smartphone division (it wasn’t enough). The truth is that these devices are simply too powerful to be used to take selfies and pictures of food exclusively.

Connectivity
When some of your staff travels for work, ensuring they have the technology that can be of the most use to them is important. With Wi-Fi hotspots replacing the Internet cafes, connectivity isn’t a problem (at first). You will be able to get onto the web pretty much anywhere you go, but the networks you utilize are probably not as secure as the one in your office. This presents major problems with sending and receiving data. To mitigate the risk of data theft while on the road, companies should consider a virtual private network (VPN) as a way to avoid data loss. A VPN provides a secure encrypted tunnel in which to send and receive data, keeping your data safe, and your business out of harm's way.

Some organizations will still want their staff members who are out of the office to sit in meetings. There are several conferencing solutions available to the modern business that will allow your staff to remote into a meeting and ensure that they aren’t missing anything. There are also plenty of cloud-based file sharing solutions build directly for the remote worker. So, while it’s a traveler’s responsibility to ensure the hardware you send them with is secure, it is your responsibility to ensure that you have the technology in place to keep your data secure.

Traveling for business doesn’t have to be a giant headache. For more information about business solutions that will solve all the problems posed by remote workers, call our technology professionals today at (757) 420-5150.

 

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Friday, July 20 2018

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