Ironically, as many workers go fully-remote, on-site support is often necessary to make remote work possible. Depending on the company’s IT maturity, many companies will have to configure VPNs, add remote VOIP capabilities, and set up an RMM system on-site before employees can work from home. Grocery stores need to be able to support an influx of visitors and maintain 100% uptime on point-of-sale and WiFi systems to manage inventory and purchases. Medical care facilities, hospitals especially, must have reliable, secure internet to serve patients.
For these reasons among many others, many IT service companies find themselves forced to continue sending IT technicians out into the field. This doesn’t mean technicians can’t be safe, however. Here are 5 things your IT service company can do to keep your technicians safe and your clients’ needs met.
1. Schedule work orders during off-hours
Work with your clients to schedule work orders when sites are not heavily populated. If the site is a retail location, for example, try sending technicians onsite before and/or after store hours. Even if some staff remain, a technician should reasonably be able to maintain a six-foot distance from other people. This might not be possible when stores, especially retail superstores and grocery stores, are open for business.
2. Make sure technicians are prepared so they can spend minimal time on-site
Normally, technicians might arrive on-site before even speaking to a manager. In present conditions, this isn’t advisable. Instead, advise your technician to get on the phone with the on-site manager before they arrive. Work with your clients and ask them to send error messages and photos of devices for troubleshooting. This allows technicians to research troubleshooting steps and diagnose problems before they even step out of their vehicles.
3. Give technicians access to sanitation supplies
If you have access to sanitation or janitorial supplies, make sure your technicians have them in their vehicles, ready-to-go. Make sure that screen cleaners contain at least 70% alcohol to kill any germs on devices technicians might service. Advise your technicians to wear disposable gloves to clean their workspace, equipment, and devices before and after working on them. Additionally, advise technicians to use an on-site restroom to wash their hands before and after completing a work order. If your technician needs to service equipment in a healthcare facility, ensure that either you or the hospital provide the same personal-protective equipment (PPE) as healthcare workers.
4. Reconsider your required documentation
Your technicians may usually be required to collect signatures from on-site managers to ensure work was completed to their satisfaction. However, this would require technicians and on-site managers to come into close contact with one another. Instead, consider temporarily allowing photos of completed work or emails from on-site managers to serve as acceptable documentation.
5. Be compassionate and flexible
If any of your technicians are considered high-risk, let them stay home. If any of your technicians become ill, send someone else in their place. If you find yourself short-staffed, don’t worry. There are dozens of places to find IT technicians, especially given current unemployment rates.
If you need to find quality IT technicians to go on-site, Field Nation is also here to help. With more than 100,000 IT technicians across North America, we can help you find IT technicians in minutes– literally.