9 Tips to Effectively Manage a Remote Workforce with ActivTrak

In recent weeks with COVID-19,  the businesses have gone through a major transition to being fully remote.  Many organizations are adjusting to the “new normal” and are being forced to deploy new technologies and processes in record time to fully support their remote workforce. 

Employers and employees share the same goal: minimizing risk and ensuring business continuity so they can remain productive and successful during these challenging times.

ActivTrak’s user activity monitoring tools provide insights for both managers and employees that ensure better outcomes for everyone.  Here are some tips for using ActivTrak to help you manage your new, or expanding, remote workforce.

Tip #1: Deploy the Agent Remotely 

A successful deployment begins with getting the ActivTrak agent installed so it can securely communicate over an encrypted channel back to your ActivTrak cloud instance. There are several ways to accomplish this, depending on your needs.

Read our Deploying Agent Guide for several solutions, including our newest feature, Installing the Agent via Direct Link (shown below).

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Tip #2: Introduce ActivTrak to your Workforce

Many of our customers want to know how they should introduce Activtrak to their employees.  Needs differ on a case-by-case basis, however, there are a few best practices that we generally recommend when communicating with your team about ActivTrak:

Be Transparent 

  • Let employees know that work activity will be monitored
  • Explain why you’re implementing ActivTrak 
  • Tell employees what data is collected & how it will be used
  • Invite employees to ask questions

Build Trust

Respect employee privacy during off hours by setting up scheduled tracking to only monitor devices during working hours.

Use ActivTrak as a Collaboration Tool

Share data insights with your teams to encourage productivity and engagement.  You can easily grant access to the data collected so each employee can view and analyze their own productivity trends. 

Tip #3: Create Remote Groups

Groups are a functional way to segment users. Users can belong to more than one group, and these can be hierarchical, location-based, or categorized in any way that fits your organization’s model. Watch the brief video below for an overview of how to create groups for your organization.

You can also set up Alarms based on Groups. Check out this article in our Help Center for more information.

Tip #4: Grant Managers Access to Remote Groups

 Give Dashboard access to your management team by following this guide. View-only access or full administrator rights can be set up within the ActivTrak Dashboard. Activtrak makes it easy for managers to view their employees’ data, reports, and insights.

 

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Tip #5: Set up Working Hours, Schedules & Reports

 The Working Hours Report is the easiest way to get an at-a-glance summary of your employees’ daily activity. It includes First Activity, Last Activity, Productive Time, Unproductive Time and a summary of when each user’s day begins and ends. Learn more about Working Hours here. 

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Tip #6: Monitor Application Usage & Efficiency

 The Top Applications pie chart found on the Dashboard summarizes your organization’s most frequently used applications and websites. Regularly check for new, or previously unknown applications by filtering for “Undefined” sites & apps. This is a great way to get a snapshot into SaaS application usage across your team.

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Clicking on Top Applications on the dashboard lets you drill into details. Learn what apps are being used, by whom, and how often. You can also use this data to identify where you have licenses that aren't being used - which can result in cost savings for your organization.

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Tip #7:  Measure and Analyze Productivity of Users

You can quickly transform your business by embracing and enabling remote workers and understanding their productivity. Some ideas to get you started include: 

Identify Top Performers

Use the Top Users report to understand employee productivity levels and get a stack-ranked view by usage of productive applications and websites. You can even use this as a leaderboard to encourage engagement and friendly competition amongst teams or individual employees. 

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Use Productivity Reports

The Productivity Report lets you see employee time that was spent productively. You can learn more about this report here 

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Understand Employee Productivity Behavior

View Top Applications and Top Sites on the main dashboard to gain insights on where your employees are spending their time.  You can learn more about the dashboard here

Understand what types of applications and websites employees use most with the Top Categories report.

Leverage the Activity Log to see a master record of user activities. Any website accessed, app opened, login and log out times, and time spent Passive is kept here. 

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Integrate Productivity Analytics with External Sources

Leverage Data Connect to export data, perform queries and integrate user activity data with BI and data visualization tools such as Tableau and PowerBI.

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Tip #8: Establish an Organizational Behaviors Baseline

Establishing a baseline of typical work behaviors will allow you to quickly identify behavioral anomalies of your users. You can set up Alarms and assign a weighted risk score in order to differentiate behaviors that may be more detrimental to productivity, compliance or security.

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Tip #9: Understand User Actions to Improve Security

The security perimeter is expanding exponentially. As we see corporate firewalls becoming irrelevant and instead relying on employees' home networks, organizations need to be adjusting security monitoring accordingly. Configure ActivTrak to monitor security-specific events, such as:

  • Access to prohibited sites
  • Use of unauthorized applications
  • Copying of sensitive information to cloud sharing sites
  • USB Activity Monitoring

Watch the video below to learn a few ways you can set up your ActivTrak instance to detect security events.

 

 

 

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Mark Allen
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