Expanding your at-home workforce may have a significant effect on IT architecture, security/compliance, and corporate culture. Progent has 20 years of experience assisting small and mid-size businesses to plan, configure, manage, tune, and debug IT networks that support a remote workforce. Progent can help your Austin company to select the right technologies and adhere to best practices in creating and maintaining a safe virtual office ecosystem for telecommuters that promotes collaboration and returns top value. Progent offers support services ranging from on demand expertise for getting you over occasional IT roadblocks to full project management to help you carry out business-critical tasks.
Progent can help Austin, Texas organizations to succeed with any aspect of building a high-performing remote work environment by delivering infrastructure configuration services, VoIP PBX expertise, voice/video conferencing integration, collaboration platform selection and deployment, public cloud integration, Help Desk services, security and compliance, data protection solutions, and unified management.
Infrastructure for a Remote Workforce
Configuring the physical and software infrastructure required for an at-home workforce can be particularly complex if you have to manage a combination of personal equipment like PCs and notebooks, routers, and Wi-Fi APs from different manufacturers and with a variety of OS software and firmware levels. Progent's experience providing remote support for both legacy and modern IT products in virtual office solutions enables you to make efficient use of your available network infrastructure and offers fast access to expertise for making essential updates. Support services available from Progent to help your company to implement a productive work-at-home infrastructure include:
- VPN connectivity makes it possible to create a secure tunnel for authorized remote employees to use IT resources located at your company data center or in the cloud. Progent can assist your company to deploy and manage VPN connections between your at-home workforce and your various network resources by providing remote VPN configuration consulting. For businesses with Cisco's ASA firewalls, Progent's Cisco ASA experts can assist your telecommuters to set up Cisco's popular AnyConnect software for secure VPN connections for a broad range of endpoint devices such as Microsoft Windows, Mac, iOS, Linux, and Google Android.
- Virtual Desktop Infrastructure platforms enable an at-home worker to view and use a remote computer's desktop. This gives network managers more control over the digital environment of telecommuters and offers them a consistent and more productive work experience. Progent's VDI services include Windows Remote Desktop support and Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops VDI expertise.
- Routers attach at-home networks to the Internet and support VPN tunnels, local wireless connectivity, and firewall services. Progent offers top-tier online consulting for integrating home routers from a variety of vendors. See router configuration services from Cisco-certified experts.
- Home Wireless networks, typically supporting an entire household and guests, are commonly used by at-home employees to connect to their router for work. This can cause performance as well as security problems. Progent can help businesses to resolve these issues by providing expertise like Aironet configuration expertise, Cisco-certified Meraki WiFi deployment expertise, and Ubiquiti Unifi WiFi AP integration help.
- Internet connectivity solutions impact the performance and reliability of connections between at-home workers and the corporate data center. Vital processes may require redundant Internet access in the event the primary connection fails. Progent can provide guidance for picking ISPs, choosing sensible bandwidth and data volume packages, and integrating redundant Internet connections. See Internet connectivity solutions.
VoIP Integration for Remote Workers
Extending the company phone system to accommodate remote users is vital to supporting a productive work-at-home solution. A variety of cloud-based digital PBX products are used by SMBs to server telecommuters. Many enterprises rely on Cisco's modern or older platforms for IP voice solutions. Progent can assist businesses of all sizes to plan or maintain a telecommuter IP voice service that provides the versatility, transparency and protection needed for teleworkers. Progent's Cisco-certified CCIE IP Voice consultants offer advanced support to assist organizations tune their current Cisco VoIP environments to handle a growing at-home workforce.
- Cisco Unified Communications Manager (Cisco Unified CM) delivers high-end telephony capabilities to devices such as IP phones, media processing products, VoIP gateways, and multimedia apps deployed across the network. CUCM supports other combined media services such as messaging, voice/video conferencing, and team interaction networks. For more information about Progent's Unified Communications Manager support, visit Cisco Unified Communications Manager consultants.
- Cisco CallManager is Cisco's earlier call-processing software and has been replaced by CUCM. Progent's consultants can help your company to support your current CallManager deployment or migrate smoothly to Cisco's modern IP telephony products. To find out about Progent's expertise for Cisco CallManager and Cisco's other early VoIP products, visit CallManager expertise.
- Cisco IP Gateways provide integration with PSTN networks and with users working beyond the corporate perimeter
like at-home workers. Progent can provide expert support for Cisco's earlier generation IP gateways including the UC520, UC540 and UC560 series and for modern Cisco SIP gateways. See Cisco Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) gateway configuration consulting.
- Other VoIP Platforms supported by Progent include Vonage, Intermedia Unite and 8x8. Progent can assist you to enhance your WAN architecture to support these VoIP solutions and provide as-needed deployment and troubleshooting expertise.
Video Conferencing for Remote Workers
A wide range of video conferencing platforms from leading vendors enable virtual discussions, video and voice conferencing, chat sessions, and screen/content sharing for both local workers and telecommuters. Many companies use a mix of conferencing products to accommodate their various partners and customers. Progent can help your organization to manage your current conferencing environment and optimize the experience of your at-home employees.
- Skype for Business is Microsoft's popular communications platform that enables presence, instant messaging, voice and video calling and conferencing plus the seamless integration of these functions within Office desktop and Microsoft 365 applications such as PowerPoint, Word, Excel and Outlook. Progent can provide the skills of Microsoft-certified specialists who can help you to configure and manage Skype for Business client software to accommodate your at-home workforce. To learn more about Progent's support services for Skype for Business, refer to Skype for Business consulting experts.
- FaceTime is Apple's multiuser video calling platform for compatible iOS, iPadOS, iPod and macOS devices. FaceTime works on Wi-Fi or cellular Internet connections. Later editions of FaceTime support up to 32 concurrent users for voice/video calls. To learn more about Progent's consulting services for FaceTime, see Progent's FaceTime configuration expertise.
- Webex Meeting Center supports remote conferencing for most computing devices. Delivered through Cisco's Webex Cloud, Webex services include sharing granular content or screens, presentations that incorporate rich media including Microsoft PowerPoint, network-based capture, plus editing and playback for future reference and training. To learn more about Progent's consulting services for Webex as well as for other IP video products from Cisco, visit Progent's Webex Meeting Center support services.
- Teams is Microsoft's next-generation replacement for Skype for Business. Teams provides a portal for conferencing, contacts, and content with capabilities that include voice/video conferencing, persistent threaded chat, plus data sharing. For details about Progent's support expertise for Microsoft Teams and for other Microsoft 365 products, visit Progent's Microsoft Teams consulting services.
- Additional Conferencing Platforms supported by Progent's conferencing experts include Google Meet, Amazon Chime, Zoom, and Slack. Progent can deliver configuration and debugging services for these products and
assist you to optimize your network infrastructure to run them.
Microsoft Collaboration Software for Remote Workers
Microsoft's collaboration platforms are closely integrated with Microsoft's familiar Microsoft Office and Microsoft 365 families, offering a powerful ecosystem of productivity apps that deliver a consistent user interface for exchanging information across a corporate network and on a broad range of endpoint computers. Progent has delivered remote consulting services for SharePoint and Exchange since their original publication and can assist your company to configure these critical collaboration products to maximize the productivity of your remote workers.
SharePoint uses web entities to facilitate collaboration and knowledge sharing by providing policy-driven delivery of data, business processes, and utilities for looking through enterprise-wide business data. SharePoint enables you to build secure portals that permits at-home workers to see and update consolidated corporate intelligence by means of Intranets (Wikis), Blogs, social sites, and Web Parts (Widgets). To find out about Progent's SharePoint support services, refer to SharePoint integration and development expertise.
Exchange and Exchange Online offer secure collaboration features including public folders, shared mailboxes, and shared calendars and contacts. Progent's Microsoft certified Exchange experts can show you how to activate and utilize these features for your at-home workers. For details about Progent's Exchange consulting expertise, go to deployment consulting for Microsoft Exchange Server.
OneDrive is Microsoft's collaborative cloud storage service, comparable to GoogleDrive. At-home users can store files to OneDrive, and colleagues can retrieve them safely via a browser. Included with Microsoft Office and Microsoft 365, OneDrive allows at-home workers to co-edit files. Edits created offline are automatically synced when you go back online. For information about Progent's consulting services for OneDrive, go to Onedrive integration consulting.
Public Cloud Integration Services for Teleworkers
Progent can provide advanced online assistance for helping organizations to create, maintain and optimize integrated network architectures that combine physical data centers, remote workers, branches, plus cloud resources. Progent offers top-tier consultant for all modes of cloud service including Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service, and Software as a Service. Progent can help remote workers resolve issues with public cloud access, authentication, and cybersecurity.
Microsoft Azure is a leading family of public cloud software and services that allows you to use infrastructure, servers, and critical apps running on Microsoft's massive cloud. Microsoft Azure offers over 100 services services including the ability to host Windows and Linux-based virtual machines, on-demand cloud storage, email and messaging, app development with Visual Studio, and data protection. Progent can assist you to deploy virtual machines on Azure Virtual Machines, configure cloud-based storage on Azure Storage services, unify identity control with Azure Active Directory, and plan backup and restore systems with Azure Backup. Progent's cloud experts can also help you create secure access to Azure for at-home workers by configuring and troubleshooting firewalls and VPN tunnels. For details about Progent's expertise for Azure, refer to Microsoft Azure consulting services.
Microsoft 365, previously branded Office 365, is Microsoft's growing suite of client productivity applications and cloud-based services available by subscription. Office apps and cloud services are marketed in a selection of plans designed for users ranging from students and households to major enterprises. Progent can provide quick and easy online access to consultants familiar with Microsoft 365-compatible endpoints based on Windows, Mac, iOS, and Google Android operating systems. Progent can assist you to evaluate the numerous subscription bundles offered with Microsoft 365 and deploy 365 applications for your at-home workers to achieve maximum business value. For details about Progent's consulting services for Microsoft 365, visit Microsoft 365 integration expertise.
Microsoft 365 Exchange Online is one of the most popular cloud-based applications in the Microsoft 365 product line. Microsoft 365 Exchange Online provides the benefits of lower spending for physical infrastructure, easier management, dynamic scaling, high availability, and other benefits inherent with cloud computing. Microsoft has engineered Exchange Online to operate smoothly with on-premises Exchange environments, allowing you to create hybrid cloud/onsite networks. Progent's Exchange consultants are available for occasional help to guide you past challenging technical bottlenecks and can also provide comprehensive project management outsourcing to ensure your remote workers have convenient and secure access to your Exchange Online deployment. To find out Progent's support services for Microsoft 365 Exchange Online, refer to Microsoft 365 Exchange Online configuration and support expertise.
Amazon AWS is a trailblazer in the public cloud computing arena and is the world's leading source of cloud-based services. Progent offers fast and affordable online contact with cloud connectivity experts who can help your organization to design, implement, manage, and troubleshoot hybrid information networks that incorporate Amazon AWS cloud-based services with local data centers and with other public clouds such as Microsoft Azure. Progent also offers the skills of Cisco-certified CCIE networking experts to help you to create a high-availability network architecture so your employees have a productive computing experience regardless of whether they are working from your headquarters, a remote branch, from home, or on the move. To learn about Progent's support services for Amazon AWS, see Amazon AWS integration expertise.
Google Cloud Platform (GCP) is a popular collection of cloud services that offers Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) and Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) products. Progent's certified Microsoft, Linux, and Cisco experts can assist you to scale your current IT assets with the Google Cloud, and Progent's DBA experts can show you how to make your key applications cloud friendly so your teleworkers can take full advantage of Google Cloud services. Progent can help your business to deploy VMs on Google Cloud Compute Engine, plan an efficient storage solution with GCP Storage services, and simplify identity control for teleworkers with GCP Cloud Identity. Progent can also assist your organization to use GCP's unified management technology to control and monitor your GCP ecosystem. For information, go to Google Cloud Platform (GCP) consulting services.
Help Desk Support for Remote Workers
A fast, enterprise-wide switchover to a telecommuter business model, which could be motivated by a pandemic or as part of a business continuity process, can overwhelm even a well-staffed internal Support Desk. Progent's Help Desk services make it possible for businesses of any size to outsource or supplement their Call Desk with Progent's remote Technical Response Center team.
- Progent's Standard Call Desk services utilize Progent's nationwide team of online IT support experts combined with enterprise-class trouble ticketing and follow-up software to provide an economical, modern Help Desk Call Center. Progent's Standard Help Desk Services offer a comprehensive solution that handles all aspects of remote Level 1 desktop technical support from initial help requests through ticket creation, desktop sharing, problem resolution, and reporting. A web-based User's Service Portal allows from-home workers to track or revise their current tickets, add information, and append screen captures and relevant files. Desktop support services are delivered at a significant discount off Progent's normal Level 1 technical service charges, and Progent offers the option of fast hand-off to Level 2 and Level 3 support specialists to resolve complex issues. To learn more, see Progent's Standard Helpdesk Services for small companies.
- Progent's Help Desk Call Center Augmentation Service enables your company to expand your existing Call Desk organization by splitting delivery of Support Desk services transparently between your in-house support organization and Progent's extensive roster of PC support technicians and subject matter experts. Progent's co-managed Call Desk service uses a collective support solution utilizing the leading professional services automation tool for handling service requests and trouble tickets, assigning ownership, monitoring progress, and producing management reports. For information about how Progent's Call Desk Supplementation Services can enable your business to deliver world-class IT support to your from-home workers, visit Progent's Call Desk supplementation Services.
Cybersecurity for Remote Workers
At-home workers typically use their own computing devices and often work in a poorly secured physical space. This situation multiplies their susceptibility to malware attacks and calls for judicious configuration of corporate firewalls, anti-malware tools, multi-factor authentication, remote endpoint monitoring, extensive end-user training, and the creation of policies built on leading practices. Progent's seasoned team of cybersecurity support consultants can help you to plan, implement and maintain an effective security solution that guards vital IT resources in environments that include remote workers.
Firewalls allow companies to create a network that can be securely utilized by on-premises users and by at-home workers, mobile employees, suppliers, clients, and other stakeholders. Next-generation firewall appliances permit you to configure and manage appropriate access rights to various groups of users and to scale your network and modify your security profile as your business evolves and as network attacks grow more complex. Progent works with both current and older firewall devices from all major vendors like Cisco, Palo Alto Networks, Check Point, Juniper, SonicWall and Fortinet. To find out more about Progent's firewall configuration services, visit firewall configuration and support services.
Online Endpoint Security Monitoring makes it possible to watch over the disparate devices used by telecommuters and either block or identify and mitigate modern threats such as ransomware. With ProSight Active Security Monitoring (ASM) services, a lightweight software agent is put on each secured endpoint device, monitoring all activity and utilizing state-of-the-art behavioral threat analysis from SentinelOne to identify new attacks at inception. When an attack is discovered, ProSight Active Security Monitoring instantly isolates the infected endpoint from the corporate network to quarantine the malware. Because the ProSight ASM software agent is self-contained, endpoint devices remain secure even if they are disconnected from the Internet. Progent is a SentinelOne Partner, reseller, and integrator. For details about ProSight Active Security Monitoring, visit remote endpoint monitoring for at-home workers.
Progent's Duo MFA Managed Services utilize Cisco's Duo technology to protect against stolen passwords by using two-factor authentication (2FA). Duo enables single-tap identity verification on iOS, Android, and other personal devices. With Duo 2FA, when you sign into a protected online account and enter your password you are asked to confirm your identity via a unit that only you possess and that is accessed using a separate network channel. A broad selection of out-of-band devices can be utilized for this second form of ID validation such as a smartphone or watch, a hardware/software token, a landline phone, etc. You may designate multiple verification devices. For details about Duo two-factor identity authentication services, visit Cisco Duo MFA two-factor authentication services for telecommuters.
Security Audits can assess the vulnerability of your network to all classes of outside and internal security attacks for an environment that incorporates an at-home workforce. Progent can run online, automated security inventory software for rapidly and economically detecting a wide variety of security gaps that can be surfaced via the Internet. Progent's security assessment experts, which can be managed by data security professionals with advanced certifications including CISM, ISSAP, and GIAC, can assist your business to audit your processes and policies and assess your IT architecture to enable you to implement the highest level of protection for your telecommuters.
Horizon3.ai's NodeZero PEN Testing Platform is a breakthrough penetration test (pentest) product family that can deliver autonomous threat assessment of your work-from-home connectivity solution as well as your internal and perimeter networks to help you expose, prioritize, fix, and confirm security weaknesses before threat actors can take advantage of them. Progent can assist you to deploy NodeZero to carry out thorough penetration tests of your network perimeter and your internal network so you can evaluate your current security posture. Progent can also help you to strengthen your network security and can assist you to design and implement a unified cybersecurity ecosystem that streamlines management and delivers optimum protection for on-premises, multi-cloud, at-home, and perimeter IT assets. To find out additional details about Progent's vulnerability assessment services powered by on NodeZero's PEN test products, visit Consulting Support for NodeZero's Pentest Platform.
Download White Paper: Protecting a Work-From-Home (WFH) Environment
To view or download a white paper describing key things to concentrate on for protecting a network that includes telecommuters, click:
Securing a Work-From-Home Network White Paper. (PDF - 2.4 MB)
Data Protection Solutions for Telecommuters
Data Protection involves saving and recovering vital data in order to prevent data loss and reduce restoration time and effort in the event of storage problems due to equipment breakdowns, software glitches, operator mistakes, cyber attack, or other causes. Dependable data protection strategies can be particularly difficult to design and maintain in hybrid networks that combine local data centers, public clouds, and at-home workers.
- Backup/Restore strategies for at-home workers must address multiple kinds of personally owned endpoints. Progent can provide fast online help from consultants knowledgeable about a broad range of products for protection Windows, Apple Mac and Linux/UNIX servers and desktop computers as well as laptops, iOS and Android tablets and handhelds. Leading backup/restore solutions supported by Progent's data protection experts include Barracuda Backup, Azure Backup, Symantec Backup Exec, Acronis Backup and Recovery, Retrospect, and Time Machine. To back up resources spread throughout a hybrid network, Progent offers ProSight Data Protection Services, a managed backup/recovery subscription service that uses cloud storage and includes granular restore and unified management capabilities.
- Disaster Recovery/Business Continuity strategies commonly envision circumstances that require a rapid changeover to a work-at-home environment. Progent's senior disaster recovery preparedness consultants and business continuity consultants can help your business to create, document and test a DR/BC plan that includes the logistics of moving to an at-home workforce.
Unified Management for an At-Home Workforce
Microsoft has renamed and rebundled its endpoint management platforms under the title Microsoft Endpoint Manager, which includes Intune for cloud-based management of remote endpoints and Configuration Manager for managing local endpoints. Endpoint Manager offers a unified environment for protecting corporate information by managing local, mobile, and home-based endpoint devices.
Intune is part of Microsoft's Endpoint Management family that also includes Configuration Manager. Intune is a cloud service for managing and securing remote computers and software. Managed endpoint devices can be personally owned or company owned. IT administrators managing the enrolled endpoint computers of telecommuters can utilize Intune to deploy and authenticate applications on devices, push updates and certificates, configure policies for accessing data and networks, set passwords, create VPN tunnels, control how telecommuters share data, establish threat defense, ensure compliance, and delete corporate information from missing, stolen or decommissioned endpoint devices. Intune works with Apple iOS, Google Android, Windows, and macOS/OS X devices. To learn about Intune and how Progent can assist your company to use Microsoft's Endpoint Management to manage the endpoint devices of your at-home workers, see Intune telecommuter device management expertise.
VMware Workspace ONE
VMware Workspace ONE is an advanced unified MDM platform that helps network administrators to keep remote endpoints up to date and protected. Workspace ONE incorporates VMware AirWatch technology for centralized endpoint administration plus VMware's Horizon virtual application delivery technology for access control, app management, and setup management of endpoints. Workspace ONE runs with devices based on Windows 10, macOS, Apple iOS, Android, Chrome OS, or popular distributions of Linux. VMware Workspace ONE is available by subscription as a cloud service or as an on-site product via a perpetual license. Top capabilities of VMware Workspace ONE include rapid remote deployment of out-of-the-box laptops, immediate onboarding of new employees, policy set up and enforcement for all classes of devices, aggregated management reporting and performance analytics, an email encryption gateway, and seamless integration with Microsoft apps and cloud products. To find out about Progent's support services for VMware Workspace ONE, visit VMware Workspace ONE remote endpoint management expertise.
Contact Progent for At-Home Worker Expertise
To get in touch with Progent about creating and managing an efficient work-from-home environment for your Austin, Texas business, call 1-800-993-9400 or refer to Contact Progent.