March 25, 2020 email communication to Applied Tech customers

Another wild week for the Applied Tech team and our customers. This week promises to be much the same as Wisconsin tightens up the state of emergency.

We continue to successfully move our customers’ teams into a home environment – some easier than others. It was another record week for our Help Desk – up 35% from our weekly average! We appreciated your patience and the nice compliments many of you gave our tech teams – they were the week’s heroes.

As we shared last week, we’ve been learning a few things with this mass migration to working from home:

  • Bandwidth – Some employees are experiencing slow speeds at home. Windstream has a free 90-day offer for HD service with a 2-3 day turn around and no cancellation penalty. Also, try rebooting home routers or calling your current home provider to remove caps on speed.
  • VPNs – If you need to set up new connections, take care to only allow the traffic necessary to access designated resources. You want to reduce the risk of malware or malicious traffic gaining access from the home network to your IT environment.
  • Phishing email – There is increased traffic taking advantage of the crisis purporting to represent the CDC and WHO organizations. We highly recommend enabling multi-factor authentication (MFA) to protect your company against these attacks if an employee does fall prey to a phisher.
  • Teams usage – Many are still learning how to use Teams for collaboration, communications and productivity. We created a thorough 6-min. video on how to use Teams Calling Capabilities that your staff might find useful.
  • Training – Self-guided training videos from QuickHelp™ are very useful for helping your team get up and running. Teams videos were the top subject area viewed last week. The 20-min series on Security training should be required viewing to protect both employees and the company.

If you have QuickHelp, strongly encourage your teams or trainers to jump on. These videos are just a few minutes in length and a valuable tool to get your team productive quickly.  If you do not have QuickHelp, contact your Strategic Account Manager (SAM) about a free 45-day trial.

For some good news, we want to share how some of our customers’ businesses have changed and how they are responding:

Food Fight Restaurant Group – No explanation needed about the impact on this Madison-based group of unique and diverse restaurants who saw a dramatic reduction in their business last week. They are keeping their kitchens open (and some staff working) to serve their many devoted customers and keep the lights on. In addition to supporting their IT environment, we are encouraging our team and customers in the area to schedule a meal or two from them into your weekly menu planner.

Forward Service Corporation – This Wisconsin non-profit’s mission is to help low income adults and youth with a wide range of services to provide support and employment. With the sudden drop in state employment, their business is expected to pick up in the 46 counties they serve. If you know people who have lost their job, consider referring them to Forward Service Corporation.

If you need support, we are here for you.

Stay well,

The Applied Tech Team

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