Building with Your IT Needs in Mind

building with IT in mind_Now IT Connects_Minnesota

The COVID-19 pandemic will permanently change the way we all work. The health and safety of your employees is vitally important. But so is the ability to stay connected, especially when a portion of your workforce is working remotely. Here are a few ways you can design your workspace with your IT needs in mind.

Integrate, Don’t Retrofit

Your company’s IT needs should be integrated into the design of your workspace. Don’t wait until you finalize plans and put up walls to consider what your IT needs are. Include your IT team in the design process so you create a space that will meet your current and future technology needs. Your IT experts can advise you and your architect on what space you need to house your IT infrastructure and how to integrate ethernet and USB ports and WiFi networks into the structure of your space to make it easy to stay connected.

IT Needs for Individual Workspaces

What IT does each individual worker require in your workspace? At a bare minimum, they likely need plentiful electrical outlets, USB and ethernet ports, and a strong WiFi connection. Screen privacy should also be a priority, especially for employees who work with sensitive information. Consider the hardware you will need to support. Will you invest in desktop computers for everyone to encourage desk use, or provide laptops or tablets to empower people to work where they choose?

IT Needs for Conference Rooms

Due to COVID-19, it is likely that a portion of your workforce will be working remotely over the next few months and perhaps permanently. Meetings with clients and vendors may also occur virtually. It will be vitally important to include a space to facilitate collaboration between remote workers and in-office employees.

Conference rooms require IT infrastructure that makes collaboration easy and seamless. To do so requires forethought during the design stage to hide network and AV cables behind a wall to supply a projector or in a floor trench to serve the conference room table. To facilitate video conferencing, you’ll need a webcam as well as a projector, and a mic as well as speakers. If you plan to use an app-based room scheduler, having a tablet outside the door of the room can make it easy for workers to review the calendar and schedule their meetings.

IT Needs for Common Areas

As flexible workspaces become more popular, common areas of your workspace will need to be technology-friendly. Employees should be able to stay connected to email and other essential applications wherever they are.

When designing your common area spaces, carefully place WiFi routers so every square inch is covered. If you have a lobby, consider installing digital signage to direct visitors and share information in real time. Remember to add the IT infrastructure to support any access control system you require.

If you need help determining what IT infrastructure you’ll need to support your business in your new space, Now IT Connects is here to help. We can design, install, and maintain your network, hardware, software, and web applications to keep your team productive. To get started, contact us today.


The Four Fundamentals of Network Security: A Guest Post by Secure Net Pros

four fundamentals of network security_Secure Net Pros_Now IT Connects

Whether your team is onsite or working remotely, the security of your network is an ongoing concern. Here are the four fundamentals of network security that all organizations should implement to protect their networks.

1. Assess Cyber Risk

Stronger network security starts with a comprehensive cyber risk assessment. It is impossible to prioritize and address security vulnerabilities without identifying what those liabilities are. A thorough assessment will evaluate your hardware, software, system configurations, system entry points, and other security risks.

2. Remediate Security Vulnerabilities

The cyber risk assessment uncovers your network’s vulnerabilities so you can take steps to address them. Some solutions are simple and straightforward, such as strengthening your network’s firewall protection and making all outstanding security updates to your hardware and software. Others require long-term management. This may include uncovering and eliminating any unauthorized wireless connections to your network and erasing unneeded user profiles from software and web-based applications.

3. Detect Cyber Threats

A cornerstone of network security is ongoing threat detection. Many cyber threats against your network come from external bad actors trying to gain access to your systems. But many others come from inside your network itself. Your staff may inadvertently or intentional change security settings or access your network on an insecure device, giving criminals back-door access to your network. Continuous threat detection to identify and remediate these risks is an important part of keeping your network safe.

4. Monitor the Network

Set-it-and-forget-it solutions just won’t cut it when it comes to securing your network. Managed security is a round-the-clock job. The 360-degree managed security solution from Secure Net Pros puts actionable intelligence at our fingertips so our team can act fast to protect your network and your data. For expert help in securing your systems, contact the Secure Net Pros team today.


A Closer Look at Our IT Services

A Closer Look at IT Services_Now IT Connects_Clearwater Minnesota

Ever wonder with the Now IT Connects team is up to every day? Wonder no more! We have several main IT services that keep us busy throughout the day and week. From backup and cloud solutions to network security and comprehensive managed IT services, here’s a look at how we can help you.

Managed IT Services

Managed IT Services are the Now IT Connects team’s bread and butter. Why try to figure IT out on your own when you can partner with an IT company who provides you with cloud-based solutions, network maintenance, hardware updates, and email troubleshooting?

Through our managed IT offerings, you can rely on us to take care of IT through ongoing device management, monitoring, and alerting services. Our cloud-based managed IT platform allows us to monitor your systems remotely so we aren’t interrupting your day. We can schedule updates overnight so your team experiences minimal downtime, and our alerts system helps us resolve any issues before you even realize they exist. If you want to stay up and running in 2020, the Now IT Connects team has your back.

Network Security

Your network is your business’s heart, brain, and circulatory system all rolled into one. It keeps your business running, your team productive, and your operations moving forward with ease. When your network’s compromised, it can grind your entire business to a halt.

Unless you have IT expertise, we recommend working with an IT service provider like us with the know-how and technology resources to protect your hardware and software from malfunction, misuse, modification, and attacks.

Email and Spam Protection

It’s tough having your email down for an hour, let alone a day or two. Business email systems must constantly defend themselves against viruses, malware, direct attacks, and inadequate storage. That’s why Now IT Connects offers cloud-based email solutions. Cloud-based email and spam filtering systems offer limitless storage and real-time security updates so your inbox is always protected.

Backup and Cloud Solutions

Speaking of the cloud, it’s a powerful, secure place to store your data. One of the IT services we provide is cloud-based data storage and backup. We partner with trusted cloud service providers to offer our clients secure data storage that’s available anytime, anywhere with an internet connection. Cloud computing also helps our clients eliminate the need to manually back up their data to tapes or other local storage devices. Instead, we can automate daily backups to the cloud to ensure your data is always available and safe.

If you’d like to take your IT to the next level this year, we’d love to meet you! Give Now IT Connects a call today at 320-558-6300.