Enlarging your remote workforce may have a significant effect on network architecture, security, and corporate culture. Progent has two decades of experience assisting small and mid-size businesses to design, configure, administer, optimize, and troubleshoot IT networks that incorporate work-from-home employees. Progent can help you to pick the appropriate tools and follow best practices in creating and maintaining a secure virtual office ecosystem for telecommuters that promotes teamwork and delivers maximum business value. Progent offers support services ranging from as-needed guidance for helping you over occasional IT bottlenecks to full project management or co-management to help you carry out business-critical tasks.
Progent's consultants can help you to succeed with any facet of creating a high-functioning work-at-home environment by providing infrastructure configuration services, VoIP PBX troubleshooting, video conferencing integration, collaboration platform customization and training, public cloud integration, Help Desk augmentation, cybersecurity, data protection solutions, and unified management.
Network Infrastructure for a Remote Workforce
Setting up the network infrastructure required for an at-home workforce can be especially complicated if you must accommodate a mix of personal equipment such as PCs and notebooks, Internet routers, and wireless APs from an assortment of manufacturers and with a mix of operating systems and firmware releases. Progent's background delivering remote help for both legacy and modern technologies in remote office venues enables you to make efficient use of your available infrastructure and provides you with fast access to top-tire consultants for implement necessary upgrades. Support services offered by Progent to assist you to create a high-functioning telecommuting ecosystem include:
- Virtual Private Network (VPN) technology makes it possible to establish a safe tunnel for authenticated at-home workers to access IT assets situated at your company data center or in a public cloud. Progent can help your company to configure and manage VPN connections between your teleworkers and your various IT resources by providing remote VPN integration consulting. For businesses using Cisco's ASA firewalls, Progent's Cisco-certified ASA Firewall experts can help your remote workers to set up Cisco's popular AnyConnect software for secure VPN tunneling for a wide selection of devices including Windows, Mac, iOS, Linux, and Android.
- Virtual Desktop Infrastructure platforms enable a telecommuter to see and use a remote computer's desktop. This technology gives network managers significant control over the digital environment of at-home employees and ensures remote users a familiar experience. Progent's VDI consulting services include Windows Remote Desktop support and Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops VDI solutions.
- Routers attach home computer networks to the Internet and typically support VPN connections, home Wi-Fi connectivity, and firewall services. Progent can provide expert remote support for deploying home routers from a range of vendors. See router configuration support from Cisco-certified experts.
- Home Wireless networks, often shared by the whole family and visitors, are frequently used by telecommuters to access their Internet router for work. This can cause throughput as well as security problems. Progent can assist businesses to mitigate these issues by delivering services like Cisco Aironet integration expertise, Cisco-certified Meraki WiFi deployment expertise, and Ubiquiti Unifi WiFi AP integration assistance.
- Internet connectivity methods impact the speed and reliability of connections between telecommuters and the corporate data center. Vital processes might demand redundant Internet access in the event the primary connection breaks. Progent can provide expertise for identifying Internet service providers, picking appropriate service bundles, and configuring redundant Internet connections. See Internet access integration services.
IP Voice Integration for Teleworkers
Extending the company PBX environment to include teleworkers is critical to supporting an effective work-at-home solution. A broad range of cloud-centric digital PBX platforms are popular with SMBs to server remote users. Many enterprises rely on Cisco's current or legacy platforms for VoIP solutions. Progent can assist organizations of any size to plan or tune a telecommuter IP voice service that provides the versatility, transparency and security required for at-home workers. Progent's Cisco-certified CCIE IP Voice experts offer advanced support to assist organizations tune their existing Cisco IP voice environments to support a growing at-home workforce.
- Cisco Unified Communications Manager (CUCM) extends high-end telephony capabilities to devices such as IP phones, media processing platforms, Voice over IP gateways, and multimedia software used throughout the network. Unified Communications Manager manages other combined media services like messaging, video conferencing, and team collaboration networks. For details about Progent's Unified Communications Manager expertise, refer to Cisco Unified Communications Manager consulting services.
- Cisco CallManager is Cisco's legacy call-processing agent and has been replaced by Cisco Unified CM. Progent can assist you to maintain your existing CallManager environment or upgrade smoothly to Cisco's current IP telephony solutions. To learn about Progent's expertise for CallManager and Cisco's other older VoIP platforms, refer to Cisco CallManager consulting services.
- Cisco IP Gateways provide integration with PSTN networks and with clients working outside the corporate perimeter
like at-home workers. Progent offers expert support for Cisco's legacy IP gateways including the UC520, UC540 and UC560 products and for modern Cisco SIP gateways. See Cisco SIP gateway configuration expertise.
- Other VoIP Platforms supported by Progent include Vonage, Intermedia Unite and 8x8. Progent can help you to expand your WAN infrastructure to support these VoIP solutions and provide online configuration and troubleshooting services.
Voice/Video Conferencing for an At-Home Workforce
A wide range of voice/video conferencing platforms from leading vendors support online discussions, video and voice conferencing, chat sessions, and content sharing for both onsite workers and telecommuters. Many organizations use multiple products to meet the needs of their various partners and customers. Progent's communications experts can assist your organization to maintain your current voice/video conferencing environment and optimize the productivity of your at-home workforce.
- Skype for Business is Microsoft's popular communications platform that supports real-time presence, instant messaging, audio and video calling and conferencing as well as the seamless integration of these functions within Office desktop and Microsoft 365 applications including PowerPoint, Word, and Excel. Progent can provide the expertise of Microsoft-certified consultants who can help your company to set up and manage Skype for Business clients to support your at-home employees. To learn more about Progent's support expertise for Skype for Business, refer to Skype for Business consulting services.
- FaceTime is Apple's multiuser video calling platform for compatible iOS and macOS computers and smartphones. FaceTime runs on Wi-Fi or cellular Internet connections. Later versions of FaceTime support up to 32 concurrent users for voice/video sessions. For details about Progent's consulting services for FaceTime, see Progent's FaceTime configuration expertise.
- Webex Meeting Center provides remote conferencing for virtually all desktop or mobile devices. Delivered via Cisco's Webex Cloud, Webex services include sharing specific content or screens, presentations that embed rich media such as Microsoft PowerPoint, session capture, plus editing and playback for future reference. For details about Progent's consulting expertise for Cisco Webex and 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 hub for conversations, contacts, and information with features that include IP voice and video conferencing, threaded chat, plus file sharing. For details about Progent's consulting services for Microsoft Teams and for additional Microsoft 365 products, refer to Progent's Microsoft Teams consulting services.
- Other Voice/Video Conferencing Apps supported by Progent's conferencing experts include Google Meet, Amazon Chime, Zoom, and Slack. Progent can deliver integration and troubleshooting services for these products and
assist your business to tune your network architecture to host them.
Microsoft Collaboration Platforms for Telecommuters
Microsoft's collaboration platforms are tightly integrated with Microsoft's popular Microsoft Office and Microsoft 365 families, providing a rich environment of applications that create a cohesive user interface for sharing information across multiple sites and on a broad range of endpoint computers. Progent has delivered online consulting services for Microsoft SharePoint and Exchange Server since their initial publication and can assist your company to tune these flagship collaboration products to optimize the productivity of your at-home workers.
SharePoint utilizes web entities to promote collaboration and knowledge sharing by providing policy-driven access to content, workflow, and utilities for searching through enterprise-wide information silos. SharePoint permits you to create protected portals that allows remote workers to view and edit aggregated corporate intelligence via Wikis, Blogs, social web sites, and Web Parts (Widgets). To learn about Progent's SharePoint consulting services, see SharePoint integration and application development consulting.
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 services, visit integration consulting for Microsoft Exchange Server.
OneDrive is Microsoftï¿½s collaborative cloud-based file hosting and synchronization service, comparable to GoogleDrive. Remote users can save files to the OneDrive service, and co-workers anywhere can access them safely through a browser. Included with Office and Microsoft 365, OneDrive enables home employees to co-edit files. Edits created offline are automatically synced when you go back online. For information about Progent's expertise for OneDrive, visit Onedrive integration consulting.
Cloud Integration for Remote Workers
Progent offers fast and affordable remote assistance for helping businesses to build, maintain and optimize integrated network architectures that include physical data centers, teleworkers, branches, and public cloud services. Progent can provide top-tier consultant for all types of public cloud service such as Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service, and Software as a Service (SaaS). Progent can help telecommuters resolve problems with public cloud access, identity, and cybersecurity.
Azure is a leading platform for cloud services that enables you to use IT infrastructure, servers, and key applications running on Microsoft's extensive cloud. Microsoft Azure includes over one hundred cloud-based services including hosting for Windows and Linux-powered virtual machines, scalable cloud storage, email and messaging, app development with Visual Studio, and data protection. Progent can help you to deploy virtual machines on Azure Virtual Machines, integrate storage on Azure Storage services, unify identity management with Azure Active Directory, and design data backup and restore systems with Azure Backup. Progent's cloud experts can also help you establish secure connections to Azure services for remote workers by configuring and debugging firewall appliances and VPN tunnels. To learn about Progent's consulting expertise for Azure, go to Microsoft Azure expertise.
Microsoft 365, previously branded Office 365, is Microsoft's popular suite of business productivity software and cloud services offered on a subscription basis. Microsoft applications and services are marketed in a variety of bundles intended for users ranging from individuals and small offices to major enterprises. Progent can provide fast and easy online access to experts familiar with Microsoft 365-compatible endpoint devices running Windows, Mac, iOS, and Google Android technology. Progent can assist you to assess the numerous subscription plans offered with Microsoft 365 and deploy 365 applications for your telecommuters to achieve top business value. For details about Progent's support services for Microsoft 365, go to Microsoft 365 consulting expertise.
Microsoft 365 Exchange Online is among the most widely used cloud-based applications in Azure-hosted Microsoft 365 product suite. Microsoft 365 Exchange Online provides the benefits of reduced spending for data center infrastructure, easier management, on-demand scaling, high reliability, and additional advantages inherent with public clouds. Microsoft has engineered Exchange Online to operate smoothly with local deployments of Exchange, allowing customers to build hybrid cloud/onsite information systems. Progent's certified Exchange consultants can provide occasional assistance to get you past tough IT bottlenecks and also offer comprehensive project management services to ensure your at-home workers have convenient and secure access to your Microsoft 365 Exchange Online environment. To find out Progent's expertise for Exchange Online, see Microsoft 365 Exchange Online integration and troubleshooting consulting.
Amazon Web Services (AWS) is a trailblazer in the public cloud market and is the industry's leading source of cloud-based services. Progent offers rapid and affordable online contact with cloud connectivity experts who can help your organization to plan, deploy, manage, and debug hybrid IT networks that integrate Amazon AWS cloud services with on-premises resources and with other popular cloud platforms such as Azure. Progent also offers access to Cisco-certified CCIE networking consultants to help you to create a high-uptime network architecture to make sure your employees have a consistent computing experience whether they are working from your headquarters, a remote branch, from home, or on the move. To find out about Progent's consulting expertise for Amazon AWS, go to Amazon AWS consulting expertise.
Google Cloud is a popular collection of public cloud services that provides Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) and Platform-as-a-Service products. Progent's certified Microsoft, Linux, and Cisco consulting experts can help you to expand your current IT assets with the Google Cloud, and Progent's DBA consultants can show you how to make your key applications cloud ready so your teleworkers can benefit fully from Google Cloud services. Progent can assist your organization to deploy VMs on Google Cloud Compute Engine, design a cost-effective storage system with Google Cloud Storage services, and simplify identity control for telecommuters with GCP Cloud Identity services. Progent's consultants can also help your organization to utilize GCP's management tools to control and track your GCP ecosystem. For details, go to Google Cloud Platform (GCP) consulting services.
Help Desk Call Center Support for Telecommuters
A rapid, organization-wide switchover to a from-home business model, which might be motivated by an epidemic or as a component of a business continuity process, can overwhelm even a high-performing in-house Help Desk. Progent's Help Desk Call Center services allow organizations to outsource or supplement their Call Center with Progent's remote Technical Response Center (TRC) services.
- Progent's Standard Help Desk Call Center support services utilize Progent's nationwide network of remote IT support specialists combined with world-class ticketing and tracking software to offer an affordable, modern Help Desk. Progent's Standard Help Desk Services provide a comprehensive solution that addresses all facets of online Level 1 PC technical support from initial help requests through ticket creation, screen sharing, problem resolution, and incident reporting. A web-based User's Service Portal enables from-home workers to monitor or revise their current tickets, add information, and append screen captures and attachments. Desktop support services are provided at a substantial price reduction off Progent's ordinary Level 1 technical service rates, and Progent makes available optional rapid escalation to Level 2 and Level 3 IT experts to deal with complex problems. To learn more, refer to Progent's Standard Helpdesk Services outsourcing for small companies.
- Progent's Help Desk Supplemental Service allows your company to supplement your current Help Desk team by splitting delivery of Call Desk support seamlessly between your regular IT support organization and Progent's extensive pool of PC support engineers and subject matter experts. Progent's shared Call Desk service uses a co-sourcing support model utilizing the leading PSA platform for handling service requests and ticketing, establishing responsibility, tracking progress, and producing reports. To find out how Progent's Help Desk Supplementation Services can help your business to provide world-class IT support to your from-home workers, see Progent's Help Desk supplementation Services.
Security and Compliance for Remote Workers
At-home workers typically utilize their own devices and usually operate in an unsecured physical environment. This situation multiplies their vulnerability to malware attacks and calls for judicious deployment of corporate firewalls, AV tools, MFA-based identity verification, remote endpoint monitoring, intensive end-user education, and the development of security policies built on leading practices. Progent's veteran group of data security support consultants can assist you to design, configure and maintain an effective security solution that protects critical information resources in environments that incorporate an at-home workforce.
Firewalls allow companies to build a network environment that can be safely utilized by on-premises users as well as by teleworkers, mobile employees, vendors, customers, and other stakeholders. Modern firewall devices permit you to assign and control different access rights to different groups of users and to scale your network and adjust your cybersecurity posture as your company evolves and as network attacks become more sophisticated. Progent works with both new and older security appliances from all major vendors including Cisco, Palo Alto Networks, WatchGuard, Juniper, SonicWall and Fortinet. To learn more about Progent's firewall integration expertise, go to firewall integration and support services.
Remote Endpoint Monitoring makes it easy to track the disparate computers utilized by at-home workers and either reject or identify and mitigate the latest cyber attacks such as ransomware. With ProSight Active Security Monitoring (ASM) services, a small-footprint agent is put on every protected endpoint device, monitoring all activity and utilizing state-of-the-art behavioral threat analysis from SentinelOne to detect zero-day attacks on arrival. When an attack is discovered, ProSight Active Security Monitoring instantly disconnects the infected endpoint from the corporate network to quarantine the threat. Since the ProSight ASM software agent is autonomous, endpoints remain protected even when they are disconnected from the Internet. To find out more about ProSight Active Security Monitoring, refer to remote endpoint monitoring for at-home workers.
Progent's Duo authentication services utilize Cisco's Duo cloud technology to protect against stolen passwords by using two-factor authentication. Duo supports single-tap identity confirmation on iOS, Android, and other personal devices. With 2FA, whenever you log into a secured online account and give your password you are asked to verify who you are via a unit that only you have and that is accessed using a different network channel. A wide range of devices can be used as this second means of authentication including a smartphone or wearable, a hardware token, a landline telephone, etc. You may designate several validation devices. To find out more about Duo two-factor identity authentication services, visit Cisco Duo MFA two-factor authentication services for teleworkers.
Security Audits can assess the exposure of your information system to all types of external and local security attacks for a network that incorporates remote workers. Progent can deploy remote, automated security inventory scanning for rapidly and affordably uncovering a wide variety of security weaknesses that can be surfaced via the Internet. Progent's security assessment experts, which can be provided by security experts with advanced credentials including CISA, CISSP, and GIAC, can help you to audit your workflows and policies and review your network infrastructure to allow you to implement the highest level of protection for your teleworkers.
Download White Paper: Protecting a Work-From-Home (WFH) Network
To view or download a white paper describing key things to focus on for protecting a network that includes work-from-home staff, click:
Protecting a Work-From-Home Network White Paper. (PDF - 2.4 MB)
Data Protection Solutions for Telecommuters
The field of Data Protection involves backing up and recovering critical information so as to prevent data loss and minimize restoration time and effort in the event of storage system problems resulting from equipment breakdowns, software glitches, operator error, malware, or any other reason. Reliable data protection solutions can be especially difficult to design and maintain in hybrid networks that combine local data centers, public clouds, and an at-home workforce.
- Backup/Recovery strategies for telecommuters must address multiple kinds of user-owned endpoints. Progent offers quick remote help from consultants familiar with a broad range of platforms for protection Microsoft Windows, Apple and Linux/UNIX servers and desktops as well as laptops, tablets and handhelds. Leading backup/restore products maintained by Progent's data protection experts include Barracuda Backup, Azure Backup, DoubleTake Software, CrashPlan, Retrospect, and Time Machine. To back up data distributed across a wide area network, Progent offers ProSight Data Protection Services, a backup/recovery service that utilizes cloud storage and features fine-grained restore and unified management capabilities.
- Disaster Recovery/Business Continuity plans often envision circumstances that require a quick switch to an at-home workforce. Progent's expert disaster recovery planning experts and business continuity planning consultants can help you to develop, document and test a DR/BC strategy that includes the logistics of moving to telecommuting.
Unified Management for Remote Workers
Microsoft has rebranded and reshuffled its endpoint management products under the title Endpoint Manager, which encompasses Intune for cloud-based management of mobile and remote endpoints and Configuration Manager for managing local computers. Endpoint Manager offers a unified platform for protecting corporate information by managing on-premises, mobile, and home-based endpoints.
Intune is part of Microsoft's Endpoint Management family that also features Microsoft Configuration Manager. Intune is a cloud service for managing and protecting remote devices and software. Remote endpoint computers can be user owned or business owned. Network admins managing the endpoint computers of telecommuters can utilize Intune to deploy and authenticate apps on devices, push patches and certificates, set up policies for accessing data and resources, set passwords, establish VPN connections, control how telecommuters share information, set up threat defense, verify compliance, and erase sensitive information from missing, stolen or deactivated endpoint devices. Intune works with iOS/iPadOS, Android, Windows, and macOS/OS X endpoints. For information about Microsoft Intune and to find out how Progent can help you to use this platform to administer the endpoint computers of your at-home workforce, go to Intune teleworker endpoint management expertise.
VMware Workspace ONE
VMware Workspace ONE is a feature-rich unified MDM product that allows network administrators to keep remote endpoint devices up to date and protected. Workspace ONE uses VMware AirWatch for unified endpoint administration combined with VMware's Horizon virtual software delivery technology for access control, application management, and setup management of endpoint devices. Workspace ONE operates with devices based on Windows 10, macOS, iOS, Android, Chrome OS, or leading distributions of Linux. VMware Workspace ONE is offered by subscription as a cloud-based service or as an on-premises deployment through a one-time purchase. Key capabilities of VMware Workspace ONE include fast over-the-air deployment of out-of-the-box notebooks, immediate onboarding of new users, policy set up and enforcement for all classes of devices, unifies management reporting and analytics, an email encryption gateway, and seamless integration with Microsoft apps and cloud products. For information about Progent's support for VMware Workspace ONE, go to VMware Workspace ONE mobile endpoint management expertise.
Contact Progent for At-Home Worker Expertise
To get in touch with Progent about building and maintaining an efficient telecommuter solution, phone 1-800-993-9400 or refer to Contact Progent.