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Why you should invest in company phones

Monday, May 22, 2017

Many businesses in the modern era require their employees to use smartphones. From sales executives, who are frequently on the road, to tech support gurus or high-level management - a mobile phone helps them to do their job effectively.

 

A good number of these employees currently use their own smartphones for company use, but is this really the best option for them, and for your business?

 

It might be worth investing in company phones for those employees who regularly need to be contacted outside of the office, or need to be reached quickly, and here are few reasons why.

 

1. Security

 

Giving employees a company mobile phone can help you to keep information safe. Personal-use phones are often connected to company email accounts, databases and the cloud. While it's true that a company phone would also be connected to these things, it shouldn't be connected to any personal accounts as well. This division of work and personal could prevent things such as phishing scams, spyware and malware from being installed as a result of actions taken on personal accounts (such as from junk emails or non-work websites). It also allows you to impose rules on the security of the device itself, so that poor security options on a personal phone (such as fingerprint recognition, password and pattern entry) don't put your company information at risk.

 

2. Control

 

Giving your employees their own company phone, not to be used for personal calls, texts or browsing, allows you to control the price you pay. Some employers will reimburse their staff for mobile phone use when they are required to use their personal phone for work purposes. Depending on what tariff they are on, what price plan they have and which supplier they are with, it might work out cheaper to buy your own contract for them (especially if international calls are made, or calls originating outside of the UK).

 

3. Necessity

 

It may be necessary to provide an employee with a company phone if they don't already own a mobile phone with the capabilities that are required for your business. If they are forced to upgrade, and the costs are more than they would usually incur for personal use, you may have to pay anyway.

 

It's also worth noting that if an employee doesn't take adequate care with their phone, they might be unreachable at crucial times. Giving them a company phone, along with adequate protection - such as Tuffscreen screen protectors - can help reduce downtime and possibly lost profits.

 

Learn more about the Tuffscreen screen protectors and get in touch with an expert today.

 

 


Three security steps to help protect your business

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

 

A secure, well-protected business could be the difference between success and failure. What are the best ways of going about it?

 

1. Encourage employees to activate two-factor authentication

 

Commonly abbreviated to 2FA, two-factor authentication acts as a second stage in your login procedure. After you’ve typed in your password, you’ll need to pass the second step before you can log in. This effectively heightens the security on your device.

 

This second stage of authentication can come in various forms. It might be a fingerprint, a pin code or something physical like a fob.

 

The second level of authentication reduces the chances of your smartphone being compromised by a cyber-criminal. It doesn’t guarantee total security but it certainly deters criminals as it requires extra effort on their part to break down your security.

 

Although it isn’t 100% proof against attacks, 2FA will reduce the chance of sensitive information falling into the wrong hands. Anyone working outside of the office, be it on the road, in the field or at home, presents a higher risk to businesses.

 

2. Ensure field workers' phones and devices are protected

 

With an increasing number of businesses allowing remote working, it's important to ensure your business stays as secure as it can. Technology is a fantastic tool to increase flexibility for workers, but it does mean that businesses surrender control to their employees as they can't monitor what they're doing.

 

Many companies are effective at providing high security to office workers but don’t provide the same for remote workers. This means there’s more chance of remote workers running risks outside an office environment. They might smash their phone more easily if they're rushing around. A simple solution is to install Tuffscreen's multi-layer screen protector. Fewer broken phones; higher profits.

 

3. Secure WiFi

 

Many WiFi networks are unsecured but easily accessible. Provide your employees with formal training on the use of WiFi networks. Even if they've just nipped around the corner to grab a cup of coffee, they might log in on an unsecured network to check their emails. While this is diligent behaviour from an employee, they might be running a risk they're not aware of.

 

So, in conclusion, follow these three simple steps. Make 2FA obligatory, install screen protection on employees' phones and educate your employees about WiFi. If your employees are protected, your business is protected.


Contact Tuffscreen today to find out more.



How to incorporate employees' smartphones into your business

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Smartphones are a way of life, so there's no avoiding the fact that from time to time throughout the day your employees will take some time to catch up on their messages, browse the net or check their emails. As a business however, you could be using your workers smartphone usage to your advantage, which could give you the edge over some of your competitors.

 

Internal communications

 

Let's face it, most, if not all of your employees will be using a smartphone. With that in mind, you may wish to get your employees to download a communications app. Slack is one app that could work to your advantage as it has plenty of different channels for topics specifically related to work. By giving yourself the opportunity to instantly message employees or teams instantaneously, you can cut down your internal emails by up to a half.

 

By cutting down emails, you are allowing your employees to be more productive. You'd be surprised just how many company emails are internal, so it could result in a faster workforce. It will also ensure that nobody misses a meeting or an important update because they 'didn't see the email'. You could even use apps that most of your employees will use everyday such as Skype chat or Whatsapp to send your team messages.

 

Improved collaboration

 

Having better internal communication means your collaboration is also improved. With a huge selection of smartphone apps designed to facilitate teamwork, you could be using smartphones to make working as part of a team easier than ever. Google Docs on smartphones is a great example of this as it enables all your employees to read and update spreadsheets, word documents, presentations and more. Smartphones are also great if you have creative aspects to your business such as graphic design. Allowing employees to share designs that they find inspirational, such as ones found on Instagram posts or online advertisements, could boost creativity which is vital when working on a collaborative project.

 

There are also a number of facility management apps you could be using to your advantage. These include employee directories that are cloud-based which will help your employees to confirm their location if they're remote workers, along with confirming the availability of resources such as meeting rooms.

 

If you're thinking about incorporating your employees' smartphones into the day to day operations of your business, then you may want to make sure the smartphones are protected. Get in contact with Tuffscreen to see how we can help you protect one of your company's most valuable assets.

 

 


Mobile working: the benefits it brings to businesses

Tuesday, May 02, 2017

When you think about mobile working or remote working, you may simply think about working from home or aspects of your business such as the sales team being on the road. Mobile working is much wider than that, however. It encompasses working from any place that isn't the office. Due to changes in working regulations, you could be faced with requests from staff to work remotely, but what's in it for you? We've taken a look at some of the benefits that could come from mobile working...

 

Cost savings

 

You're only going to be as profitable as your bottom line in business and simply by allowing staff to work remotely you could slash your overheads. Put simply, having staff in the office costs money and with the average office costing in the region of £6,000 per head every year, if you've got staff that can work effectively remotely, then it makes financial sense to let them do just that. You may even be able to make savings on their salaries. A recent study by Arise found that almost 60% of workers would be willing to take a pay cut if it meant they could work from home.

 

Less absenteeism

 

Workplaces that offer a flexible approach to where their staff work from generally see a drop in absenteeism from around 8.5% to 3.1%. Healthier employees mean that more work can be done and ultimately more income can be generated. There's also the added bonus of sick employees not coming into the office and spreading their illness to the rest of your staff.

 

Access to skilled workers

 

Sometimes recruiting properly qualified staff can be a struggle. If that's the case with your business, then mobile working could provide you with the solution. Many skilled workers who don't currently work would consider going back into the workplace if they knew they would be offered a greater deal of flexibility. So if recruitment is a problem for your business, you might be able to generate more interest in a position simply by allowing potential candidates to work from home.

 

If you're considering allowing more flexibility when it comes to mobile working within your business, then you're going to want to be sure that you can keep in contact with your remote workers at all times. Being safe in the knowledge that all your remote devices are working and charged is a big part of that. At Tuffscreen, we can make sure your remote worker's devices are fully protected at all times with our protective cases and made-to-order screen protectors, so please don't hesitate to get in touch to discuss your needs with us

 

 


How to apply a screen protector to your mobile device

Monday, April 24, 2017

 

 

If you've equipped your remote workers with iPhones or tablets, you will want to protect your investment. The most effective way of doing so is by providing a robust case in which to keep the device and also by applying an adhesive, transparent screen protector to the screen.

 

An invisible screen protector prevents scratches and can also guard against cracking, should the device be dropped. Here’s a quick guide on how to apply your screen protector correctly so that it doesn’t end up with creases or bubbles.

 

Prepare the device

 

Prepare the device by removing any existing screen protector and taking off the case. Using a microfibre cloth, gently clean the glass screen so that any fingerprints and dust are removed.

 

Apply the screen protector

 

Now, take the screen protector out of its packaging and carefully peel away the backing, taking care not to touch the adhesive; it’s essential that you don’t get dust or fingerprints on to the sticky side of the protector.

 

Carefully align the screen protector with the edges of the device’s screen, holding it between your fingers at the very edges and ensuring that any cut-outs are properly lined up. Squeeze the protector with the non-sticky sides together so that just the central line of the adhesive side touches the device’s screen.

 

Carefully and slowly press the screen protector into position. Never try to put the whole thing on to the screen or you will end up with bubbles. Use a soft cloth to smooth over the screen protector from top to bottom, ensuring that any tiny creases or bubbles are removed by squeezing them towards the edges of the screen.

 

Finishing touches

 

Finally, peel away the film from the front of the screen protector to leave the device fully protected and ready to go. Polish the screen with a soft cloth and place the device back into its protective case.

 

You can protect your off-site employees' iPhones, tablets, and iPads from scratching and impact damage by applying a screen protector and investing in a good quality case. For more information and to browse our range of products, contact our helpful team at Tuffscreen today.

 

 


Top 5 security tips for remote working

Monday, April 10, 2017

 

 

Remote working is becoming less a luxury and more an expectation in the modern workplace. But how do you keep remote workers secure and protect the integrity of your enterprise data when workers are at home or out in the field?

 

1. Educate to increase awareness

 

Heavy handed policies that seek to restrict personal browsing can have the opposite effect, decreasing employee satisfaction and productivity. Instead encourage awareness by educating remote workers about the threats and tactics that can be used to bypass even the best security measures, and promote the use of long and strong passwords, particularly for smartphones which are most likely to be lost or stolen.

 

2. Store it in the cloud

 

Heavily encrypted cloud-based storage has two big benefits for your remote workers. First, it's accessible from anywhere and from any device including a smartphone, and data is better protected from the threat of ransomware.

 

3. Use a VPN

 

A VPN (virtual private network) is the smart choice for a secure connection to your organisation's network. Instead of risking vulnerable public or home networks, connecting to a VPN on a device that has been properly configured ensures that data is encrypted and the larger enterprise network is also protected.

 

4. Protect BYOD

 

Any devices your organisation supplies will, of course, have firewalls, anti-virus and encryption as standard, but you need to ensure that any personal devices your remote workers will be using are similarly protected. It's a tricky one to negotiate, but the security of your enterprise network could be at stake, so be clear in your remote working policies what your expectations are.

 

5. Safety first

 

The easiest way for cybercriminals to breach your security is through stolen business laptops and smartphones, so make sure your remote employees take care of them at all times when they're on the move. Homeworking can have its own unique issues, too, with paws and little fingers often wreaking havoc. Be clear in your remote working policies about the need to secure and safeguard devices at all times. Another important safeguard is making sure that devices are protected from physical damage, with screen protectors and protective cases crucial to protecting your investment in remote working technology.

 

Browse our website today to find the protective cases necessary to keep your remote workers' devices safe.

 

 


Tips on keeping your employees' smartphones safe and secure, on and offline

Monday, April 03, 2017

With more and more remote working practices being adopted by most SMEs, many employees now use their smartphones while working out in the field. A smartphone is, in effect, a powerful computer on a smaller scale, and as such it’s vulnerable to the same online security issues as a laptop or personal computer.

 

Here are some simple tips to keep your employees’ devices protected from cyber criminals and hackers.

 

Keep up to date

 

Although the software updates that arrive on the smartphone can seem superfluous, it’s crucial for security that they are installed to keep security apps up to date and prevent hackers from accessing files and personal information held on the device.

 

Personal protection

 

Employee phones can contain personal contact information pertaining to other employees and can also provide access to company folders, especially if you have a company intranet. Protect phones by ensuring that strong passwords are used and changed regularly.

 

When using the internet via smartphones, employees must take care not to use an unsecured network. It is possible to alter the security settings on a smartphone to prevent unwanted access to your personal data. All sites that are used for making purchases should have web addresses with the following prefixes:

 

  • https://
  • shttp://
  •  

    There should also be a small padlock symbol shown in the web address line in the phone’s browser. This indicates that the site is secure.

     

    Beware Trojans

     

    When surfing, avoid browsing sites that throw dozens of popups at you - these can be used as a vehicle to bring malware into your device. Similarly, never open emails containing attachments if they come from sources that you don't recognise. Hackers often use such communications as Trojan horses, importing viruses or spy bots into your device through which your personal information can be accessed.

     

    Downloading videos and music onto your company smartphone should also be avoided, as this is another common source of trouble.

     

    Physical protection

     

    Smartphones are expensive pieces of kit that should be protected from physical damage when in use out in the field, as well as from invasion by cyber criminals when your employees are surfing the net as part of their work.

     

    You can keep your company issued smartphones protected from damage by fitting each one with a high-quality screen protector and insisting that each phone is kept in a robust, protective case.

     

    In conclusion

     

    You can ensure that your company issued smartphones stay in good condition and are used responsibly to protect your employees and your company from cyber crime by following the tips outlined above.

     

    For more information about our smartphone protection products, why not contact the helpful team at Tuffscreen today?

     

     


    How to keep in touch with remote workers

    Monday, March 27, 2017

    With the number of people working flexibly on the rise, you’ve probably got a number of remote workers spread across your workforce. Remote working is a business and employee benefit - it gives workers more freedom and helps companies cut costs (less office space is needed, less energy is used).

     

    But one thing that’s very important with remote workers is regular communication. Keeping in touch with them is essential if you want to track their progress and ensure they’re being productive. Here are three ways you can do that.

     

    1. Invest in some corporate mobile phones

     

    Giving your remote workers their own business mobile phone will help them feel invested in your company and also give you a direct line of communication. Some employees aren’t comfortable using their personal mobiles for work comms, so buying a fleet of corporate phones helps you bypass this problem. Importantly, consider buying some screen protectors so that your workers can keep their devices protected when they’re travelling to client meetings and remote working spaces.

     

    2. Set some rules 

     

    It is crucial that you set clear communication channels. Draw up a brief policy on how you expect to communicate with your remote workers and how they can best reach you. Knowing which number to definitely reach someone on, what times during the day are acceptable to get in touch etc, are all useful ways to develop a productive working relationship.

     

    3. Keep them updated

     

    When workers are remote, it’s harder for them to keep abreast of what’s happening across the company. This could lead to them feeling disengaged and out of the picture, which could have a knock-on effect on their productivity. Ensure their lack of physical visibility isn’t a problem by keeping them updated with what’s happening in the business - whether that’s through a monthly newsletter-style email or a simple ten-minute catch-up call once a week.

     

    Remote working is set to be a critical part of the way we work in the years to come. But this shift also presents risk if it isn't managed properly. Establishing clear lines of communication, ensuring your remote workers have the tools they need to do the job and keeping in touch regularly are important ways you can do that.

     


    How your smartphone can be used out in the field

    Wednesday, March 15, 2017

     

     

    There is little doubt that the smartphone has become a central part of our everyday lives but with many models offering increasingly exciting capabilities it is perhaps no surprise to see it becoming an increasingly important tool in the workplace too.

     

    But the capabilities of these devices go well beyond communication. Here are just a few of the most effective ways in which smartphones can be used out in the field.

     

    Cameras

     

    Many smartphone devices are now capable of capturing images that either rival or even overtake the quality of a regular digital camera.

     

    As a result, it has never been easier for workers out in the field to capture any potential maintenance issues and seek out help remotely.

     

    By using this technology, technicians are able to access asset logs, meter-readings, inventories, plans, diagrams and warranty information, which in turn allows them to solve issues without needing to actually be there.

     

    Scanners

     

    A large number of smartphones also contain the ability to scan QR codes and barcodes meaning they can be used as a scanner as well as a communication tool.

     

    These scanning capabilities are hugely useful for stock-taking and for identifying certain products quickly and accurately, making your workplace more efficient.

     

    Vibration analysis

     

    In a factory environment, it is important to do everything possible to identify any potential problems.

     

    Analysing vibrations can help to identify bearing defects and misaligned shafts, as well as other issues.

     

    Most modern smartphones contain a built-in accelerometer or gyroscope, which, when combined with a certain app, allows your smartphone to measure vibrations at regular intervals and offer readings in real time.

     

    Measuring magnetic fields

     

    Similarly, most modern smartphones also come with magnetic field sensors to help figure out the location of magnetic north.

     

    As a result, there are various apps available that can be used to measure magnetic fields, making the smartphone suited to several tasks, including checking for power lines behind drywall.

     

    Make sure you’re properly protected

     

    With all of the potential uses for smartphones in the field, there is obviously an increased potential for your device to get damaged.


    Always ensure you are adequately protected with a high-quality screen protector and case, as well as providing rigorous training on device protection and management to the users.

     


    How to ensure your business makes the most of smartphones

    Monday, March 06, 2017

     

     

    The popularity of mobile devices is set to rocket to new heights over the next few years. In fact, figures from the 11th annual Cisco Visual Networking Index (VNI) Mobile Data Traffic Forecast claim that the number of people using mobile phones will reach 5.5 billion by 2021.

     

    Such a figure is made all the more staggering given that it’s ahead of the number of people with bank accounts (5.4 billion), running water (5.3 billion) and landlines (2.9 billion).

     

    It’s therefore somewhat inevitable that with the rising popularity of trends such as bring your own device (BYOD) and the Internet of Things (IoT), many of these devices are finding their way into the workplace.

     

    However, making mobile devices a part of your business network often requires some thought in order to safeguard them.

     

    Have a defined policy in place

     

    This is a particularly important point for businesses looking to implement a BYOD option for its workers.

     

    The way in which employees use their devices both in and out of the workplace can have consequences in terms of security and productivity.

     

    It is, therefore, crucial to ensure that all of your employees are working within one set of clearly defined rules. These are likely to cover a number of areas, including log-in credentials, data encryption, information accessible with a mobile device and the limiting of how certain apps, such as email, can be used outside the corporate network.

     

    Make sure employees are taking care of their devices

     

    Ensuring your employees take care of company-issued devices is something of a no-brainer, but in the world of BYOD, it also pays to ensure workers are taking care of their own devices.

     

    With smartphones and tablets set to have an increased role in the modern workplace, the threat of downtime is clearly much more significant.

     

    For example, a shattered screen can put a device out of action for weeks, which in the days of mobile and flexible working can have a huge impact on productivity. Not to mention it can mean an expensive repair or replacement and has a negative impact on your brand image.

     

    It is possible to ensure that all employees are issued with a smartphone or tablet screen protector or case, but it’s also important to educate members of staff as to why such accessories can bring the most out of their mobile working experience.

     

    At Tuffscreen, we provide purpose-built protectors for a range of devices and industries, so that your business' mobile equipment can benefit from the right level of protection it needs.