After several weeks of lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic, businesses in Florida and around the country are beginning to cautiously reopen according to phased reopening plans.
This is a welcome sign for many business owners who’ve had to shut their doors for roughly 8 weeks or more, many transitioning to a completely virtual workforce.
Now the focus turns to how to reopen safely. When it comes to technology this means hardware being sanitized as well as properly prepared to ensure it’s secure from data breaches and breakdowns after being in hibernation mode for weeks.
With offices being closed for so long, a lot of computers and other devices were shut off when offices or retail locations were closed and not receiving any regular managed IT service.
The last thing a business owner wants is to reopen and then have downtime shortly afterwards because they didn’t take the steps to properly prepare their technology infrastructure for the opening.
Before you walk into your building and turn everything back on, check out the following list of preparation steps for a smart reopening strategy for your IT.
Steps to Prepare Your Technology for Reopening
Taking a strategic approach to reopening and handling of your technology will help you ensure a smooth transition back to office operations.
Here are tips for doing it right.
Dust and Clean Technology
After a couple of months of sitting untouched in your office, there is likely to be a layer of dust covering much of your office, including your electronics. Before you can go onto the next step of disinfecting, that equipment should be dusted and cleaned.
Used compressed air to clean things like keyboards and mouse wheels, and any other crevices where dust can collect. Use a microfiber cloth for wiping surfaces. All devices should be dust-free for the next step.
Disinfect All Computers/Electronics
Your office or retail location has most likely been closed for several weeks, and the coronavirus is estimated to live on surfaces for up to 5 days. So why disinfect your electronics?
There are a few reasons.
Trust is a big part of a successful reopening, disinfecting the electronics that employees are touching all day will give them a feeling of security. Additionally, if you have any point-of-sale or other technology that customers touch, it will do the same for them.
Just letting everyone know all technology was properly disinfected, goes a long way towards building trust and a sense of security so employees and customers will feel good about coming back.
Download Missed Updates
If equipment was turned off while your location was closed, there is a good chance that there have been software, OS, or firmware updates that have been issued since that time.
The update process may take a while for all computers, IoT devices, and other electronics, but going through those updates is vital to ensuring your technology isn’t left open to being hacked or infected with malware.
Make sure to update:
- Computer and mobile device operating systems
- Firmware on computers, routers/IoT devices, printers, etc.
Have Equipment Serviced if Down for 6+ Weeks
The shutdown has been a long one and it may still be a few weeks before all Lake Okeechobee area businesses can open. That’s a long time for computers and other equipment to be down, so it’s important to have a maintenance check when you bring it back up.
Cris’s Tech Repair can service all your equipment efficiently and make sure it’s in good condition and ready to go.
Socially Distance Your Workstations & Equipment
Many states are requiring social distancing measures to be in place as a prerequisite for reopening. This means that you’ll need to take a look at your technology and employee desk layout to ensure people are at least 6-8 feet apart. This may require some rearranging.
The same goes for any customer-facing electronics that may be used in your place of business.
Be careful about moving all those cords and connections, as you don’t want to “break” your network. This is another area where it’s smart to get help from an IT professional.
Plan for Regular Equipment Disinfecting
To maintain customer and employee trust as well as keep COVID-19 from spreading at your place of business, you’ll want to have all electronics regularly disinfected, at least until the danger of spread has subsided.
Make a list of all devices, both employee and customer-facing, that need disinfecting and decide what is feasible for you to do (i.e. weekly? twice a week?).
You can supplement safety in between disinfecting days by supplying hand sanitizer that is at least 70% alcohol or approved alcohol-based cleaning wipes, such as Clorox Disinfecting Wipes, which Apple recommends using for their equipment on non-porous surfaces.
Need Help with Your Technology Reopening Plan?
Cris’s Tech Repair can help you make sure your devices are in top shape and ready to go for a successful reopening.
Contact us to today to discussed your IT reopening strategy at 561-985-4961 or through our website.