Connecting Remote Workers
UCISA Advisory and Support Staff Symposium 2009
(#ucisa-ads09)

Wednesday 8th July 2009


Mariek...
Introduction to UKOLN
• UKOLN is a National centre of expertise in digital
  information management
• Library and catalogu...
Introduction to Me
• Been at UKOLN 9 years
• Now a remote worker
• Member of the Community & Outreach Team
• Currently wor...
So What About You?
•     Are you from HE/FE?
•     Are you from IT services?
•     Do you currently support remote workers...
Workshop Programme
•      Presentation: Connecting Remote Workers
       – 30 minutes
•      Discussion/Question Time: Wha...
Workshop Resources
• All resources (and more) linked with Delicious tag:
  http://delicious.com/mariekeguy/ucisa-ads09
• A...
Work is becoming something you do, not a place you go to




                            http://www.flickr.com/photos/latt...
What’s a Remote Worker?
• Anyone who works from home (occasionally or full-time)
• Anyone who works beyond the office
• An...
Why Remote Working?
• Work-life balance
• Flexibility
   – Work on the go
   – Separate sites
• Loyalty and reduced absent...
Remote Working on the Rise
• Right to request flexible working extended (April 2009) -
  4.5m parents eligible
• Currently...
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jakesdad/2838195408/




The ideal solution for most employees who
work remotely is for the s...
Getting a RW started
• Hardware
   – PC, monitor, printer, keyboard, laptop, DVD rewriters,
      scanners, audio & video ...
TECHNOLOGY




Technology is about connections - connecting
people to each other, to ideas, and to possibilities
Communications Tools
• Email
• Telephony
• VOIP
   – Skype, vontage
• Online Chat
   – AIM, Skype, SMS, IRC, Jabber,
• Soc...
Collaborative Working Tools
• Wikis
• Shared applications
   – Google docs
• Project management tools
• Bookmarking tools
...
Virtual Meetings
•     Access Grid
•     Virtual Room Videoconferencing System (VRVS)
•     Skype
•     Tokbox
•     Webin...
Mobile Devices
• Smartphones, PDAs, Blackberries, laptops
• Make sure they are added in a structured way – record all
  de...
Technical Support
• Tracking system
   – Logging support calls, detailed audit trails
• Create online documentation
   – F...
Amplified Conferences
• Video Streaming
• Assigning a tag
• Creative Commons
• Sharing available resources
   – PPTs – Sli...
POLICY




When a boardroom policy is being created it should always
keep practical implementation at the front of its min...
Policies
• Set them up in advance
• Make them clear and transparent
• But also make them flexible
• Cover:
   – Eligibilit...
A Support Framework
• UKOLN
   – Iterative process
   – RW community
   – RW champion
• JISC project Location Independent ...
Case Study BT
•     70,000 + home & nomadic workers empowered
•     6,000 part time workers
•     Over £220m in property c...
Challenges for IT Services
• Blurred boundaries
• Reduced interaction time
• Security
• Bandwidth issues, managing VPN
• S...
COMMITMENT




  UKOLN remote workers
Conclusions
• Much of your support structure is already in place
• Much of what you learn can also be applied to those
  w...
Discussion
• What do you currently do for remote workers?

• How can you face the challenges?

• How can you better suppor...
Questions?




www.ukoln.ac.uk
A centre of expertise in digital information management
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Connecting Remote Workers

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Presentation on Connecting Remote Workers given by Marieke Guy, Research Officer, UKOLN at the UCISA Advisory and Support Staff Symposium 2009 (#ucisa-ads09)
Wednesday 8th July 2009

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Connecting Remote Workers

  1. 1. Connecting Remote Workers UCISA Advisory and Support Staff Symposium 2009 (#ucisa-ads09) Wednesday 8th July 2009 Marieke Guy Research Officer UKOLN is supported by: This work is licensed under a Attribution- NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 licence www.ukoln.ac.uk www.bath.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  2. 2. Introduction to UKOLN • UKOLN is a National centre of expertise in digital information management • Library and cataloguing background • Located at the University of Bath • Funded by JISC and MLA to advise UK HE and FE communities and the cultural heritage sector • Many areas of work including: – Digital preservation: DCC – Metadata, registry work – Repositories: eBank, Intute, SWORD, DRIVER – Dissemination: Ariadne, International Journal of Digital Curation – eScience: eCrystals….etc. www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  3. 3. Introduction to Me • Been at UKOLN 9 years • Now a remote worker • Member of the Community & Outreach Team • Currently working on: – Chair of the Institutional Web Management Workshop – Cultural heritage work • Previous roles/projects include: – Good APIs project, JISC-PoWR, JISC Standards Catalogue, QA Focus, SPP Project Manager, ePrints UK project manager, Public Library Focus work, NOF- digitise, Web Magazines • Disclaimer: I’m not support staff, I’m a user! www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  4. 4. So What About You? • Are you from HE/FE? • Are you from IT services? • Do you currently support remote workers? • If so, how many? (1-5) (5-10) (10-100), more? • Are you a remote worker? • Have you ever had a go at working remotely? www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  5. 5. Workshop Programme • Presentation: Connecting Remote Workers – 30 minutes • Discussion/Question Time: What do you do for Remote Workers? – 15 minutes www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  6. 6. Workshop Resources • All resources (and more) linked with Delicious tag: http://delicious.com/mariekeguy/ucisa-ads09 • All ppts etc will be available from: – my blog http://remoteworker.wordpress.com/ – slideshare http://www.slideshare.net/MariekeGuy • Feel free to email me (m.guy@ukoln.ac.uk) or follow me on Twitter (mariekeguy) www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  7. 7. Work is becoming something you do, not a place you go to http://www.flickr.com/photos/latteart/2547757031/
  8. 8. What’s a Remote Worker? • Anyone who works from home (occasionally or full-time) • Anyone who works beyond the office • Anyone who works in a virtual team • Esther Schindler’s four ways in which a RW can operate: – At a fixed location at the employee’s home – At different offices – At a client site – As a true nomad or ‘road warrior’ www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  9. 9. Why Remote Working? • Work-life balance • Flexibility – Work on the go – Separate sites • Loyalty and reduced absenteeism, staff retention • Ability to recruit from anywhere • Productivity – Work continuity • Environment • Reduction of overheads www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  10. 10. Remote Working on the Rise • Right to request flexible working extended (April 2009) - 4.5m parents eligible • Currently one-fifth of the UK workforce does some work from home (UK Office for National Statistics records) • 90% of these are in managerial, professional, technical and skilled trades • Consider the effect of: – Recession – cutting overheads – Pandemic – swine flu, need for risk management strategy – Environment – Weather - snow www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  11. 11. http://www.flickr.com/photos/jakesdad/2838195408/ The ideal solution for most employees who work remotely is for the set-up at home to replicate the set-up in the office
  12. 12. Getting a RW started • Hardware – PC, monitor, printer, keyboard, laptop, DVD rewriters, scanners, audio & video equipment, headset, speakers, phone, etc. • Software – All the programmes they have in the office, and more! – User accounts – Remote access to email, calendar etc. • Broadband and Wireless – Offer options, reviews, support alternatives • VPN (SSL) • Introduction to the organisation – Overview of systems, servers, Web site and Intranet www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  13. 13. TECHNOLOGY Technology is about connections - connecting people to each other, to ideas, and to possibilities
  14. 14. Communications Tools • Email • Telephony • VOIP – Skype, vontage • Online Chat – AIM, Skype, SMS, IRC, Jabber, • Social Networking – Facebook, Linkedin, Xing, • Microblogging –Twitter, Yammer, Jaiku • RSS – Google reader • Recommendation services – Friend Feed • Blogs www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  15. 15. Collaborative Working Tools • Wikis • Shared applications – Google docs • Project management tools • Bookmarking tools – Delicious, Connotea • File transfer • Calendars www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  16. 16. Virtual Meetings • Access Grid • Virtual Room Videoconferencing System (VRVS) • Skype • Tokbox • Webinars www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  17. 17. Mobile Devices • Smartphones, PDAs, Blackberries, laptops • Make sure they are added in a structured way – record all devices – ID number • Handset envy? • Maintain all devices • Making your data (Intranet etc.) available on mobile devices • Mobile unified communications – bringing data back • Mobile broadband – dongles, 3G • Security issues – both data (encryption?) and actual devices (locks) www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  18. 18. Technical Support • Tracking system – Logging support calls, detailed audit trails • Create online documentation – FAQs, self-help tools • Remote assistance/access (windows/LINUX), remote PC diagnostic tools – Problems tend to cover  connectivity, access rights, equipment support and application software • Availability of staff • Give RWs freedom to support themselves, feedback • Security - anti-malware, firewall, data encryption software • Security of data (greater risk of loss or theft?), Laptop encryption www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  19. 19. Amplified Conferences • Video Streaming • Assigning a tag • Creative Commons • Sharing available resources – PPTs – Slideshare – Photos - Flickr – Video – YouTube – Podcasts – Podomatic • Promote your resources www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  20. 20. POLICY When a boardroom policy is being created it should always keep practical implementation at the front of its mind http://www.flickr.com/photos/a440/512348882/
  21. 21. Policies • Set them up in advance • Make them clear and transparent • But also make them flexible • Cover: – Eligibility, availability, contact procedures, workspace requirements, equipment and usage, expenses, training, ownership, etc. • Questions for consideration: – Can they use their own PC if they chose? – Can they use their work PC for home use? – Can other people use their PC? • Observe the development of effective patterns of usage rather than dictate www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  22. 22. A Support Framework • UKOLN – Iterative process – RW community – RW champion • JISC project Location Independent Working – 40 staff – Training and handbook • Support Framework = – Technology + – Policies and Procedures + – Commitment + – Feedback www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  23. 23. Case Study BT • 70,000 + home & nomadic workers empowered • 6,000 part time workers • Over £220m in property costs saved in 10 years • Absenteeism reduced 3.1% (UK ave. 8.5%) • e-learning saves 40% training costs • Home-workers 7% happier, enhanced skills, less stress • 1,800 tonnes less CO2. 1.2m litres less fuel used. • Transport cost savings £9.7m pa • From http://www.slideshare.net/jackies/presentation- remote-workforce-v2 www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  24. 24. Challenges for IT Services • Blurred boundaries • Reduced interaction time • Security • Bandwidth issues, managing VPN • Supporting from a distance – being quick • Supporting so many technologies • Users who don’t do what they are supposed to! • Getting user feedback • Budget • RW issues – connection with the team – Morale – perceptions • Cloud computing and SaaS www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  25. 25. COMMITMENT UKOLN remote workers
  26. 26. Conclusions • Much of your support structure is already in place • Much of what you learn can also be applied to those working on-site and other dispersed users (students) • Remote working is on the up, so you will need to tackle this as some point • Support a portfolios of Tools • Communication and community are key – Inclusion and support – Shared goals – Encourage constructive feedback – Policies and procedures www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  27. 27. Discussion • What do you currently do for remote workers? • How can you face the challenges? • How can you better support remote workers? www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
  28. 28. Questions? www.ukoln.ac.uk A centre of expertise in digital information management
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