6 Tips for Remote Work during COVID-19 Pandemic

2020-04-01 02:34:56 / Posted by Rosa Reyes to Utility Follow @ Rosa

This article will share with you tips for remote work during COVID-19 in a more effective and safer manner. With the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19), many people are told to or choose to work or study remotely from home. How do I stay productive when working remotely? Are there any tips to secure my data when I’m working away from the office?

tips for remote work during covid-19

6 Tips for Remote Work during COVID-19

#1 Block access to distracting apps and websites

block distractions when working remotely during covid-19

In general, to stay focused on your work, it’s important to eliminate or avoid distractions. It's particularly true when it comes to remote work. Undoubtedly, work remotely results in more freedom. At the same time, it can also lead to more distractions and interruptions. Here we only talk about the digital distractions such as browsing time-wasting websites. How does one reduce such distractions in remote work during coronavirus?

For Mac users

If you are working remotely on your Mac, you can use distraction blocker apps like Cisdem AppCrypt to block access to unwanted distracting websites and apps.

Step 1. Download and install AppCrypt. Launch it. When you open the app for the first time, it will ask you to set a password. Please do read the Warning before you submit the password. You can have someone else to set the password for you without you knowing the password.

set a password

Step 2. Click AppCrypt’s icon in the menu bar. Click Open Main Window. Enter the password.

  • Block apps on Mac Click the Add App icon. From the Applications folder that appears, select the apps that you want to block access to during remote work from home and click Add. In the left sidebar, you will find a list of the blocked apps. To remove an app from the list, please select it and click the Remove app icon.block distracting apps
  • Block websites on Mac Click the WebBlock icon, which will bring up the Preferences window. Under the WebBlock tab, click the add icon to add the websites you need to block. To remove a website, just highlight it and click the minus icon. If you switch from the Blacklist mode (default) to the Whitelist mode, then you will only be able to visit the websites that have been added. The blocking will apply to Safari and Google Chrome.block distracting websites

When one tries to open Mac apps or websites that have been blocked by AppCrypt, one will need to enter the correct password. For remote work during COVID-19, this can be an effective way to limit distractions.

For PC users

If you are a Windows PC user, there are also such software apps available to help you deal with distractions when you remotely work from home during COVID-19.

Block distracting apps

You can use the My Lockbox to do the job. When you first launch this tool on your computer, you will be required to set up a password. Click the Browse button. Select the folder where the distracting Windows app is installed. Click the OK button. Now, when you try to open the blocked app, a message will pop up telling you that you are not permitted to access the app.

Block distracting websites

If you get easily distracted by websites such as Facebook, Twitter and Reddit when working remotely from home, you can use URL Blocker. To block an unwanted websites, click Add in the bottom right corner. Enter the domain name, say, youtube.com. Click Add again. To add multiple website to block for the sake of productivity, just repeat the process and add all the websites.


#2 Manage your time to stay productive

manage time when working remotely

With remote work during COVID-19, there can be a very thin line between work and leisure. Remote work can be challenging especially at first. It gives you a lot of freedom and flexibility. However, it will also be easier to lose track of time. In such situations, time management software can help.

A typical time management app can keep track of time spent on various work tasks and offer statistics and analytics. This way, you can get a record of your time and figure out where and how to improve. Also, it provides features for you to organize tasks and set priorities. In addition, different time management apps may have their own advantages. For example, Timely can automatically record your time so that you don’t need to manually indicate the start and end of your task. Such software can help you effectively get work done.

Below are some apps to consider.

  • Timely (Windows, macOS, Android, iOS)
  • Focus (macOS, iOS)
  • OfficeTime (Windows, macOS, iOS)
  • nTask (Web, iOS, Android)
  • Toggl (Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOS)

#3 Make remote collaboration easier and more effective

remote collaboration

Work-from-home professionals like freelancers often work independently. If they also work on collaborative projects, they may have already developed an effective way to communicate remotely. So, remote teamwork won’t be a problem for them. When it comes to remote work during COVID-19, working together remotely can be difficult at first.

In a work-from-office environment, it’s easy to get everyone in the same room and have a face-to-face meeting. As coronavirus spreads, many companies embrace work-from-home. In such situations, it’s important to make remote collaboration possible and effective.

Fortunately, there are online collaboration platforms and virtual conference software. If a platform allows users to easily and safely conduct virtual meetings, have team chat, send and receive instant messages, share files and share screens, then it’s worth considering.

  • Google Meet (Web, Android, iOS)
  • Sococo (Windows, macOS, Android, iOS)
  • Zoom (Windows, macOS, Android, iOS)
  • GoToMeeting (Windows, macOS, Android, iOS)
  • Join.me (Web, Windows, macOS, Android, iOS)

#4 Protect your data when working remotely

data protection with remote work during covid-19

You work remotely from home during COVID-19 to protect your health. It’s also important to protect your data. When you are working from home, you use your computer to handle and process work-related data. This could include sensitive data like a business plan. To protect your data, you can start with two practices.

Password protect your apps

On macOS and Windows, there aren’t built-in features to put password protection on apps. The good news is that there are third-party tools available. Mac users can use AppCrypt to password protect any app on their Mac. This way, you can prevent others from accessing your work-related apps without your permission. Windows PC users can use My Lockbox, which can also be used to protect folders.

Password protect your folders

To stop others from seeing your important folders and files, you can put a password on them. Here is a complete guide to protecting folders on Mac with password.


#5 Protect your computer and update your software

protect your computer for remote work

There are also other security tips for remote work during COVID-19. You can start with two basic ones.

One of the common measures to protect computers is to install reliable security and antivirus software. Such software can provide powerful security solutions to safeguard your computer. If you have already installed a trusted security app on your device, please make sure that you are using the latest version of it.

Another effective and easy-to-apply practice is to keep your operating system and software up to date. Let's take a Windows PC for example. By installing Windows security updates, you can help keep your PC safe from security threats and attacks. Also, hackers and scammers may take advantage of existing security vulnerability in your software programs and access your sensitive business information. The latest versions of programs usually patch vulnerabilities and fix flaws.


#6 Make your network more secure for work

make network safe for remote work

When you are working remotely amid the coronavirus pandemic, you are using your home network for work purposes. Is my network safe enough for such purposes? How can I make my home Wi-Fi network more secure?

Change default router username and password. Don’t use the default password. Apply a strong, hard-to-guess password instead. Encrypt your Wi-Fi (if you haven’t done it yet). When someone tries to connect to your Wi-Fi network, if a password is required, then it means the network is encrypted. If not, then please do the encryption now. When it comes to the encryption standards, WPA2 is recommended.

If you are working remotely from a public space like a cafe, don’t use a public Wi-Fi. If you have no other choice, here’s a trick. You can turn your smartphone into a Wi-Fi hotspot.

Other tips for working remotely during COVID-19

There are still some other tips that may be helpful.

  • Get yourself a comfortable office chair and a proper work desk.
  • Get up early like you do on weekdays and start your day in the right way.
  • Try to stick to your office routine.
  • Avoid overworking and take regular breaks, which can help you stay healthy and actually more productive.
  • Avoid using a shared computer or family computer for work.
  • Enable email encryption when you send a work email.

Conclusion

Companies turn to remote work in coronavirus pandemic. Things can be difficult at first for remote work beginners. Hopefully the tips above can be of some help. Once you have settled into the rhythm of working remotely, you may start enjoying it and getting more productive. Do you have any tips to share?

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